Happy Friday everyone. Several UMass teams in action this weekend, the majority on the road. One of those teams, women's lacrosse, is on the opposite coast looking for a berth into the NCAA Tournament for a second consecutive year. JTAM has news on that big game and more.
The Minutewomen will face Stanford, champion of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, on the home turf of the Cardinals in the NCAA play-in game tomorrow for a chance to return to the NCAA Tournament. The Daily Collegian has a preview of the big game, while Matt Vautour leads off his notebook with some comments from head coach Alexis Venechanos.
Megan Donovan picked up two big academic honors earlier this week as she was named both UMass Scholar-Athlete of the Year and A-10 Scholar Athlete of the Year. Dick Baker has this nice piece on Donovan in the Republican.
Rowing's trip to the Dad Vail Regatta this weekend is also mentioned by Matt Vautour.
The Minutemen will attempt to build on recent success as the squad will put a four-game winning streak and an A-10 series winning streak of four straight on the line at Dayton this weekend. The Dayton Daily News has a brief preview. The baseball team's steady climb is also touched on byMatt Vautour.
Track & Field
Coming off a great weekend hosting the A-10 Championships, the track & field teams are primed for the New England Championships this weekend. Check out these video montages of the A10 Championships:
Check This Out On UMassAthletics.com: Check out the UMass Auctions for some NEW New York Jets autographed items from UMass All-American Vladimir Ducasse.
Don't Miss This: The softball team will face a pair of Philly foes at home this weekend. If you can't make it out to the field, watch the games on UMass All-Access
It was a record-setting day for softball pitcher Sara Plourde, who now owns the school record for strikeouts in a season with 472. The No. 20 Minutewomen rallied for a 3-1 win over BC yesterday. The No. 16 men's lacrosse team might have played its last game as the Minutemen suffered a tough 13-6 loss at Towson in the CAA Semifinals. Check out recaps of both games. JTAM also has the amazing story of senior Ryan Smith. Its a must read!
Matt Vautour from the Daily Hampshire Gazette has the amazing story of senior captain Ryan Smith, who was named UMass' Inspirational Athlete of the Year on Monday. Smith was called a "miracle baby" after surviving a seven-story fall from a Florida hotel in 1990, as a 20-month old.
Happy Cinco de Mayo! Three big games for UMass teams today. The baseball team fresh off a thrilling 12-10 win over Holy Cross on Tuesday, hosts Northeastern at 3 p.m. At 5 p.m., the nationally-ranked softball team hosts BC as Sara Plourde looks to set the UMass single-season strikeout record. Under the lights at 7:30 p.m., No. 16 UMass takes on No. 20 in the CAA Semifinals in Maryland. The winner advances to the league final with a chance for an automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament.
UMass alum Jeff Zywicki was key to the Washington Stealth's NLL Playoff 14-10 win over the Minnesota Swarm. The 2005 grad had five goals for the Stealth as the team prepares to play the Edmonton Rush on May 8 in the West Division Finals. Here are some recaps for the Stealth's win: The Examiner, Our Sports Central and the Seattle Times.
The Boston Blazers and alums Jack Reid and Sean Morris saw their NLL seasons end last weekend as they were defeated by the Orlando Titans, 12-11 in Florida. Reid had three loose balls in the defeat.
In the Daily Hampshire Gazette, Matt Vautour has a great feature story on the transfers from the Northeastern and Hofstra after their programs were discontinued.
UMass alum Matt Torra threw eight strong innings for the Reno Aces last night as his team beat the Las Vegas 51s, 6-3. Torra (1-1), tossed eight solid innings, scattering 10 hits and allowing just three runs. Making his fourth Triple-A start of the season, Torra threw 69 of his 93 pitches for strikes.
Torra is mentioned in "Hitting To All Fields" in the Springfield Republican as he is pitching for the Triple A Reno Aces.
2009 alum Mitchell Clegg moved to 3-0 as a pitcher with the Hagerstown Suns. He picked up the win as his team knocked off the Rome Braves, 11-5 on Tuesday afternoon. Check out his season stats, he is 3-0 with two saves along with 15 Ks in 22 innings and just two walks.
If the two games on campus aren't enough, head over to the DCU Center for the AHL Atlantic Finals as the Worcester Sharks host the Manchester Monarchs, tonight at 7 p.m., UMass is well represented with the Sharks feature Minuteman products Cory Quirk, Justin Braun, James Marcou and Matt Irwin. The series is tied 2-2. Braun and Quirk have a team-best plus-3 in the postseason.
Also in the AHL Playoffs, UMass product Matt Anderson and his Chicago Wolves beat the Texas Stars last night, 5-3 in Austin. The Wolves lead the series 2-1 with Game 4 on Wednesday night.
Check This Out On UMassAthletics.com: Coming to campus for one of the games today, or the Softball FanFest this weekend? Get directions to campus on our site.
Don't Miss This: Again, three games, three teams: Baseball vs. Northeastern at 3 p.m., Softball vs. Boston College at 5 p.m., and Men's Lacrosse at Towson at 7:30 p.m., in the CAA Semifinals. Listen to that game on WRNX 100.9 FM.
Congratulations to Vladimir Ducasse and Lisa Wilson, the male and female Athletes of the Year, as announced at last night's Senior Awards Banquet. Congrats also to all the other award recipients and the senior student-athletes. Today's edition of Just Take A Minute has a wide array of coverage. Also, baseball is in action today at home against Holy Cross a 3 p.m. Will Baudinet hit four homers again today?
The Balitmore Sun has a Q&A with Mark Dixon in which UMass is mentioned a few times in talk about the very competitive CAA.
ESPN's Quint Kessenich lists his Top 20 teams with UMass coming in at No. 10. He says of UMass' CAA playoff game at Towson on Wednesday, "it's a must-win game for both squads."
The Examiner has a recap of the Minutewomen's doubleheader sweep of Dayton on Sunday and talks about Sara Plourde closing in on the UMass single-season strikeout record.
The Eagle Tribune's softball notebook mentions two UMass-bound high school players, Paige Hansen, who helps give Concord the "best one-two pitching combination." Also mentioned is North Andover's Candace Waldie, who went 5-for-6 at the plate last week with a pair of homers and is batting .654.
Check This Out On UMassAthletics.com: Visit our YouTube page to see the best highlights and video.
Don't Miss This: The baseball team hosts Holy Cross today. Also look for the latest national softball polls.
The UMass Senior Student-Athlete Banquet takes place tonight at 6 p.m., the 2009-10 Athletes of the Year as well as Scholar-Athletes and Inspirational Awards will be handed out. It was record-setting Sunday for UMass baseball's Brian Baudinet, who smacked four homers as the Minutemen won another A-10 series with a 14-13 win over GW. JTAM has plenty of news on all UMass' teams as well as NFL minicamps featuring many UMass products.
Victor Cruz is in camp with the New York Giants. Here are some stories mentioning the local boy trying to make good with his hometown team. He is mentioned in these stories in the New York Post and the Newark Star-Ledger.
Big weekend for UMass track & field as the A-10s took place right here in Amherst on campus. Here is a recap: Daily Collegian.
The Worcester Sharks are tied 2-2 with the Manchester Monarchs in the AHL Playoffs. Here is a 3-2 winning recap as Cory Quirk scored his second postseason goal to tie the game at 2-2 and was the game's No. 1 star. UMass' Matt Irwin made his playoff debut.
Check This Out On UMassAthletics.com: Sign up for wireless updates on all UMass teams with Mobile Headlines & Scores Update. When the games end you will get the instant updates.
Don't Miss This: Tonight, the Senior Student-Athlete Banquet takes place at 6 p.m., at the Campus Center. Monday will bring conference weekly honors as well as the UMass Athlete of the Week announcement. Also check back to see where the men's lacrosse team is ranked in the USILA and Inside Lacrosse polls.