ON CAMPUS A look at the area college sports scene

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Getting her wish

In the press conference following her team's loss to Penn State in the 2008 NCAA Division I volleyball tournament, Yale coach Erin Appleman said she was hoping the Lady Lions would win it all so she could say the Bulldogs lost to the champs.

Well, Penn State did their part, outlasting Stanford in an entertaining three-set match to win its second straight national title and extend their NCAA record winning streak to 64 matches. How dominant were the Lady Lions? Well, they lost two sets the entire season and those came against Nebraska in the semifinals.

An interesting piece of trivia is that Penn State's last loss came on Yale's home court against Stanford in the 2007 season.

Parker, Richmond finish in style

Martin Parker is no stranger to titles, playing a key role on Hyde's Class S championship teams in 2004 and 2005. The redshirt sophomore defensive tackle at Richmond added another crown to his collection.

Parker had three tackles including one which he recorded a sack and forced a fumble in the first half of the Spiders' 24-7 win over Montana Friday night.

Parker finished with 56 tackles including eight tackles for losses and four sacks for 13-3 Richmond.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Naeher honored

The honors keep rolling in for Seymour's Alyssa Naeher.
Two days after the Penn State junior was named the goalkeeper on the National Soccer Coaches Association of American Division I All-American team, Naeher was named the outstanding goalkeeper in the FIFA Under-20 World Cup.
Naeher allowed just one goal in five matches to lead the U.S. to the gold medal.
In Sunday's final in Santiago, Chile, Korea outshot the U.S. 15-9 but only managed a goal in injury time by Cha Hu Nam.
Sydney Leroux and Alex Morgan had first-half goals for the U.S. in the championship match.
Naeher had a 1.11 goals against average and six shutouts in 19 games this season at Penn State.
Naeher, who had eight shutouts for the U-20 national team in 2008, is one of three members of the team in the running for U.S. Soccer Young Female Athlete of the Year award. Fan voting on the site ends Monday.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Yale wins opener; Penn State next

Ohio dominated on the stat sheet but it is the Yale volleyball team which advanced to face defending national champion Penn State on the Nittany Lions home court on Saturday with a rousing 3-2 win in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

Ellen Herman was easily the best player on the floor but had some costly hitting errors in the third and fifth sets as Yale emerged with a 25-19, 23-25, 25-23, 17-25, 15-13 victory.

Herman had 32 kills and a hitting percentage of .312, both truly remarkable numbers. The Bobcats went to Herman early and often as she had 46 percent of Ohio's hitting opportunities. As a point of reference, Yale went to Cat Dailey 36 percent of the time.

Herman had 32 kills and 13 digs for Ohio, which had more kills, assists, digs and blocks but the number which really stood out was Ohio's 20 service errors. The serving, hitting and setting errors as well as one illegal substitution call by the mistake-prone accounted for 12 of Yale's 25 points in the pivotal third set.

Dailey led Yale with 20 kills but it was Alexis Crusey who had the most timely kills. On match point, Crusey's perfectly-placed shot fell between three Ohio players.

"I couldn't be prouder of my team. I thought we really played well as a team, I thought we outplayed a really good team defensively," Yale coach Erin Appleman said. "The outhit, outblocked us, outdug us but we were able to gut it out. That is what this team has done all year is find a way."

Their reward is facing a squad being touted as perhaps the best in women's college volleyball history on its home court. Yale played at Penn State on Sept. 19 and suffered its first loss of the season 25-7, 25-13, 25-16.