UC SAN DIEGO ATHLETIC UPDATE (April 6, 2009)
Release: Sunday 04/05/2009 
by UCSD
Junior Nicole Saari and the Softball team finish their home season this weekend vs. CSU San Bernardino.
Junior Nicole Saari and the Softball team finish...
Courtesy: Jimmy Gekas/Sideline Studios

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS:

Wed., Apr. 8---Softball---UCSD vs. USD---5:00 PM

Thu., Apr. 9---Track & Field---UCSD at Johnson/Kersee Invitational---10:00 AM
Thu., Apr. 9---Women’s Water Polo---UCSD vs. Loyola Marymount---6:00 PM
Thu., Apr. 9---Baseball---UCSD at Grand Canyon---7:00 PM

Fri., Apr. 10---Track & Field---UCSD at Johnson/Kersee Invitational---10:00 AM
Fri., Apr. 10---Baseball---UCSD at Grand Canyon (DH)---3:00 PM
Fri., Apr. 10---Softball---UCSD vs. Cal State San Bernardino (DH)---4:00 PM
Fri., Apr. 10---Men’s Volleyball---UCSD vs. Cal State Northridge---7:00 PM

Sat., Apr. 11---Men’s Tennis---UCSD at Colorado Christian---9:00 AM
Sat., Apr. 11---Track & Field---UCSD at Johnson/Kersee Invitational---10:00 AM
Sat., Apr. 11---Baseball---UCSD at Grand Canyon---Noon
Sat., Apr. 11---Women’s Water Polo---UCSD vs. Michigan---Noon
Sat., Apr. 11---Men’s Tennis---UCSD at  Mesa State---1:00 PM
Sat., Apr. 11---Softball---UCSD vs. Cal State San Bernardino (DH)---1:00 PM
Sat., Apr. 11---Men’s Volleyball---UCSD vs. UC Santa Barbara---7:00 PM

Sun., Apr. 12---Men’s Tennis---UCSD at Colorado State-Pueblo---Noon


SOFTBALL CLOSES OUT HOME SEASON AGAINST SAN BERNARDINO
It’s back to CCAA play for Coach Patti Gerckens’ Softball team which hosts Cal State San Bernardino (18-26/9-11) for Friday and Saturday doubleheaders to conclude the 2009 home season...The Tritons, sitting third in the conference and ranked eighth in the region, won four of six and grabbed the Bronze Bracket crown at last weekend’s Mizuno Tournament of Champions in Turlock...UCSD improves to 22-14 overall, 12-7 in the CCAA...CSUSB is currently seventh in the league standings.

The Tritons opened play Friday in Turlock with a resounding, 11-1, shellacking of Hawaii-Hilo...Leading hitter Kristyn Lesovsky accounted for four of UCSD’s 12 hits, one a two-run third inning homer...The sophomore right fielder scored four runs and drove in three as the Tritons built up an 8-0 margin after three innings...Seniors Allison May and Jenni Habib also had three RBIs while freshman starter Camille Gaito and junior Christine Zankich combined to yield just a single run before the mercy rule was invoked after five frames...Friday’s second game was a completely different story, however...Sophomore third baseman Sarah Woofter’s fifth inning single was UCSD’s lone hit in a 5-0 loss to No. 19 Dixie State...The Tritons had only four baserunners (Lesovsky walked twice) and No. 1 starter Lauren Chastain was knocked out in the first inning.

UCSD rang up 24 hits in the first two games Saturday, a pair of victories over Grand Canyon (6-4) and Notre Dame de Namur (10-2)...Habib and May stroked two hits apiece in game one and it was a Habib single that ignited a three-run sixth inning outburst that proved decisive...Gaito went the distance, scattering nine hits and whiffing seven... Lesovsky was again the catalyst vs. Notre Dame, going 3-for-4 (one a home run), scoring three and driving in two, as the Tritons scored all 10 of their runs in the first three innings and made them stand for a five-inning mercy win...Junior catcher Nicole Saari had two hits and also knocked one out of the park, a three-run blast in the third inning...Chastain snagged her 11th win, giving up just four hits and two runs in her five-inning outing...UCSD had eight hits and Hawaii Pacific nine in Saturday’s finale but eight walks and three Triton errors handed the Sea Warriors a 12-3 win...Lesovsky cracked three hits and Saari two in the loss.

The Tritons came back strong Sunday, recording their third mercy rule victory of the tourney while topping Hawaii-Hilo for a second time, 10-2, to win the Bronze Bracket championship... Lesovsky smashed three more hits while Habib and Chastain had two each as UCSD clobbered Vulcan pitching for 14 total hits...The Tritons never trailed but blew it open in the sixth inning, ending the contest with six runs...Habib drove in four with a single and a triple...Gaito did not allow an earned run while pitching a complete game for her fifth win.

BASEBALL TAKES 3-OF-4 AT CHICO; STAYS ATOP CCAA
Fresh off an impressive performance in Chico, the sixth-ranked Baseball team heads to Phoenix for a four-game set with Division II Grand Canyon...The two clubs will play single games Thursday and Saturday, sandwiched around a Friday doubleheader...Last week, Coach Dan O’Brien’s club won three-of-four from Chico State and that leaves the Tritons 22-8 on the season, 19-5 in CCAA play and holding in first place, three games up on second place Sonoma State.

A 21-hit attack, spearheaded by senior Garrett Imeson and junior Robert Sedin propelled UCSD to a 19-8 triumph under the lights at Chico State Friday...The hit and run totals were the most posted against a Chico State team since 1996...The Tritons busted open a 2-0 affair with eight runs in the sixth inning...Imeson had two of his three hits---a double and a three-run homer---in the sixth inning uprising...Sedin also accumulated three hits and like Imeson had three RBIs...Left fielder Evan Kehoe blasted a round tripper of his own and UCSD piled up seven doubles...Sophomore Tim Shibuya tossed seven strong innings, giving up just two runs and six hits, while garnering his fourth victory.

It was more of the same Saturday as second baseman Imeson and shortstop Vance Albitz smacked five hits apiece, leading the Tritons to a 10-8, 5-3, doubleheader sweep...UCSD rebounded from a 6-4 deficit, scoring three in the sixth and two in the seventh to take game one...O’Brien’s squad had 15 hits total with the every member of the infield accounting for three---first baseman Brandon Gregorich and third sacker Josh Tanner joining Imeson and Albitz...Starter Matt Rossman had a rough outing but junior Sean Greer went four and two-thirds out of the pen, collecting his sixth win without a defeat...Guido Knudson notched his seventh save...Senior Trevor Decker put in a workmanlike five and two-thirds on the mound in the nightcap, earning his fourth win with Knudson getting another save...UCSD led all the way in this one, scoring twice in the first courtesy of a two-run bomb by DH Matt Cantele.

Sunday, Tanner, who hit over .500 for the series, had two more hits and UCSD scored four sixth inning runs but it was not enough to overcome an 8-2 Chico State lead as the Wildcats salvaged the getaway game, 8-6...Starter Kirby St. John took the loss and the Tritons had nine hits for the day.

MEN’S V-BALL ONE GAME OUT OF TOURNAMENT AS CSUN, UCSB VISIT
Still in the thick of the hunt for the final berth in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) Tournament, Coach Kevin Ring’s 10th-ranked Men’s Volleyball team plays host to No. 3 Cal State Northridge (21-5/14-5) and No. 12 UC Santa Barbara (8-16/4-15) this weekend...The Tritons, now 11-13 overall and 7-12 in MPSF play, are ninth in the conference standings, one game back of Long Beach State which currently owns the final post-season playoff spot.

Friday night at RIMAC Arena, the Tritons whipped Pacific, 3-0 (30-19, 30-22, 30-24)...The win was their fourth straight over the Tigers and gave them all-time single season bests for overall (11) and MPSF (7) victories...This one was never in doubt as UCSD registered a resounding, .434-.136 edge in hitting percentage with Jason Spangler and Will Ehrman knocking down 11 and 10 kills respectively...Ehrman’s sparkling .318 hitting percentage was, amazingly, the lowest on the team...The Tritons also had six aces and a 7-3 blocking advantage...Lefty setter Phil Bannan handed out 35 assists and senior libero Eric Leserman had nine digs.

The Tritons put in a valiant effort Saturday night but it was not enough to overcome a steady No. 5 Stanford squad which prevailed, 3-1 (30-26, 21-30, 30-26, 30-25)...Ring & Co. had some bright moments, specifically in game two where they hit an astounding .594 and completely had their way with the Cardinal...UCSD kept grinding in the third set and rallied from four points down to get to within one at 27-26...But from there, the visitors ran off three straight markers to sew up the game and for all practical purposes the match...Outside hitter Frank Fritsch hammered 22 kills for UCSD and Ehrman added 19 as the Tritons hit .316 for the contest,  a number typically resulting in a "W"...Bannan distributed 57 assists and was in on five blocks, Ehrman led with 11 digs and UCSD served up seven aces, two each by Spangler, Calvin Ross and Aaron Hedland.

Listen to Coach Kevin Ring's Saturday night post-match comments.


WATER POLO FINISHES HOME SEASON VS. LMU, MICHIGAN
Coach Larry Sanders’ Women’s Water Polo team is back at Canyonview Pool for its final two home outings of 2009...The 18th-ranked Tritons will tangle with No. 10 Loyola Marymount Thursday and then square off against No. 13 Michigan Saturday...Clearly feeling the loss of junior starter Stephanie Bocian, UCSD is 9-16 after splitting four games at last weekend’s Bronco Invitational in Santa Clara.

It was a tale of two periods in UCSD’s Bronco Invitational opener...The Tritons outscored No. 6 San Jose State by a goal in both the second and fourth quarters but were blitzed, 5-1, in the first and 6-2 in the third, leading to a 17-11 defeat...Down, 10-7, at halftime, the last of senior Stephanie Heinrich’s four goals pulled UCSD to within two early in the third period but that’s all the closer it would get...Senior Sydney Gstettenbauer and junior Rebecca Gearty each chipped in with two goals for UC...Gstettenbauer tallied three goals as the Tritons struggled but emerged victorious, 7-6, over Sonoma State in Saturday’s second tilt...Gstettetnbauer may have been the big gun, but it was single goals by Jessica Tran, Kirsten Bates, Gearty and Hanalei Crowell that lifted UCSD to a one-goal halftime lead after trailing, 3-1...The Tritons went up 6-4 and 7-5 before holding off a late Sonoma State comeback try.

Sunday, UCSD, with two goals each from Nadine Shnayderman and Stephanie Heinrich, edged WWPA foe Colorado State, 8-7...Gstettenbauer and Bates scored fourth quarter goals to ice the outcome...In a rough-and-tumble finale, the Tritons were downed, 10-7, by host Santa Clara...The Broncos got the lead early and, although it was tied on four different occasions, UCSD was never able to get a lead...Tran found the cage twice for UCSD.

TWO SCHOOL MARKS FALL AT MANGRUM INVITE; RYAN CLEARS 7-FEET
Coaches Tony Salerno and Darcy Ahner had plenty to be happy about after Saturday’s Mangrum Invitational hosted by Cal State San Marcos...The Triton women dominated with eight first place finishes while the men posted three gold medal performances... Each had a school record mark, the women’s coming from pole vaulter Donna LeFever (12-0.5) while Casey Ryan became the first UCSD athlete to clear seven feet in the high jump, leaping 7-0.25...Ryan took first place and hit an NCAA automatic qualifying mark while LeFever was second.

Winners for the UCSD women included sophomore Kelly Fogarty, who broke the tape in both the 100 (12.09) and 200 (24.36) and senior Laiah Blue, top finisher in the 100 (14.07) and 400 (62.04) hurdles...The Tritons absolutely owned both hurdle events, taking the top five spots in the shorter race and grabbing six of the top seven finishes in the one lap event...The remaining first place efforts were turned in by Anna Lee McGreogr (400/56.98), Leah Murphy (triple jump/36-3), Sarah Hendy (discus/158-4) and the 4x100 relay unit of Christine Merriill, Katie Skorupa, Fogarty and Blue which clocked 47.10...Hendy’s mark was an automatic NCAA Championship qualifier

On the men’s side, Ryan was joined in the winner’s circle by long jumper Thinh Truong (22-1) and shot putter Nick Morilla (52-0)...Leon Baham took silver in both the 110 high hurdles (14.99) and 400 intermediate hurdles (55.20)...Both Triton teams travel to Los Angeles this weekend for the Rafer Johnson/Jackie Joyner Kersee Invitational at UCLA.

MEN’S VARSITY EIGHT POSTS HUGE CREW CLASSIC TRIUMPH
In dominant fashion Sunday, Coach Zach Johnson’s varsity eight captured its second Cal Cup title in three years at the San Diego Crew Classic, scoring an open water victory over USD, Sacramento State, Santa Clara, UCLA and Orange Coast College on Mission Bay...After narrowly trailing Sacramento State through the first 500 meters, the Tritons had pulled even by the midway point and absolutely brought the hammer down in the third quarter of the race to assume a comfortable lead and win handily...The crew consisted of Andrew Hilton, Ryan Andre, Jay Dee Morgan, Jeff Collett, Kris Grey, Nathan Morgan, Karam Badran and Justin Gordon ...It was steered by coxswain Cameran Bittucci.

The JV eight and novice eight both won Sunday’s petite finals in their divisions...The JV eight was a five-second winner over UC Davis while the novices narrowly put away runner-up Michigan, crossing first by less than half a boat length...The Tritons are back on Mission Bay in two weeks to as five-time defending champions at the San Diego City Championships...San Diego State and fast-improving USD will furnish the competition.

WOMEN’S CREW FINDS GOING TOUGH IN NORTHWEST REGATTA
It will likely be a month, when the conference meet is in the books and NCAA invitations are handed out, before Coach Pattie Pinkerton’s Women’s Rowing team knows the full effect of Sunday’s performance at the Northwest Collegiate Rowing Invitational but in the immediate aftermath, she described her team’s results as “mixed”...Facing some of the top Division II squads in the country, including host and defending NCAA kingpin Western Washington, the Triton varsity eight slipped to an unexpected sixth place finish...After withstanding a two-hour fog delay on Vancouver Lake, UCSD held with the leaders through the first 500 meters but lost contact and was never able to regain it.

On a brighter note, the varsity four, featuring a new lineup of Jesi Bennett, Wanda Chin, Laurel Copenbarger and Susanne Chang with coxswain Amy Fan, claimed third behind Humboldt State and Western Washington...The lightweight four---Kav Ravo, Kelly Temes, Katie Tanaka, Lynn Nguyen and coxswain Alissa Miyake—took runner-up honors.

On the home front, Asst. Coach Liz Record’s novice squad raced Saturday at the San Diego Crew Classic but was unable to place any boats in Sunday’s finals...Next up for UCSD will be the annual San Diego City Championships, April 19.

MEN’S TENNIS BEATS POINT LOMA; FOUR-MATCH COLORADO TRIP NEXT
After splitting a pair of home matches last week, Coach Eric Steidlmayer’s young Men’s Tennis team begins a regular season-ending string of six road contests with a four-match Division II swing through Colorado this week...The Tritons (8-9) will challenge Colorado Christian and Mesa State on Saturday, take on Colorado State-Pueblo Sunday and then close things out against Metro State on Monday.

After winning two of three doubles matches, the Tritons finished off Point Loma with victories in five of the six singles encounters for a 7-2 triumph last Thursday...Kazumi Negishi and Erik Elliott at No. 1 and Naveen Dixit and Samuel Ling at No. 3 both recorded, 8-6, doubles wins...Then, at Nos. 2-6 singles, it was Vincent Nguyen, Dixit, Chapman Chan, Jake Fellow and Ling racking up points...Dixit needed a 10-6 super tiebreaker performance to win at No. 3.

Things were not so easy Friday as the Tritons absorbed a 9-0 beating at the hands of NAIA power Fresno Pacific...UCSD’s best chance to hit the scoreboard came at No. 3 doubles where Dixit and Ling were edged, 9-8.

WOMEN’S TENNIS BLOWS OUT CAL STATE L.A.; 58 STRAIGHT IN CCAA
Coach Liz LaPlante’s 14th-ranked Women’s Tennis team will have an 11-day respite before finishing off the regular season slate next week...UCSD split a pair of home matches last week, losing a tough one, 6-3, against NAIA No. 2 Fresno Pacific Friday before bouncing back to wax Cal State L.A., 9-0, on  Saturday...The Tritons are now 13-5 on the year.

Against Fresno Pacific, Katie Mulloy and Tessa Tran teamed up for an 8-0 doubles win and then Tran (No. 6) and Valerie Tang (No. 5) forged straight set singles victories...Both Taskeen Bains at No. 3 and Anita Athavale at No. 4 were in the hunt for points, driving their matches to third sets, but neither was able to seal the deal, Athavale going down, 7-6, in the third.

Using a re-worked lineup, La Plante & Co. improved their CCAA record to 8-0 and their consecutive match conference winning streak to 58 against CSULA...With regular Ina Dan sidelined, LaPlante’s doubles pairings of Natalie Varnay-Bains, Athavale-Tang and Tran-Mulloy swept by a combined, 24-5, margin...Then it was shutout results at Nos. 1-6 singles with Varnay, Bains, Roxy Pourmirzaie, Rina Nakano, Sam Yeung and Lauren Saket doing the work.

GOLFERS 14TH IN PHOENIX
Still trying to find its stride, Coach Mike Wydra’s Golf team will have the week off after finishing 14th in the 20-team field at the Grand Canyon Thunderbird Invitational...The Tritons will be back in action April 13-14, entering the Buzzini Invitational at Turlock Country Club.

Leading the way for UCSD at the Grand Canyon event was freshman Raj Samra who tied for 15th, carding a four under par 212 for 54 holes on the 7,015-yd. Palm Valley Country Club course...Samra’s opening day 71-68 turned out to be the Tritons’ two best individual rounds of the tourney...Unfortunately, no one else was close to Samra... Sophomore Austin Alfonso was next in line, tying for 62nd at 224...He was followed by Keith Okasaki (T68th/225), Billy Olsen (T84th.229) and Justin Gabbert (T87th/231).


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