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Rutgers Olympic Sports: Good weekend for the Knights

From NCAA tournament games to the mats, Rutgers had a pretty good weekend.

Kahleah Copper
Kahleah Copper
scarletknights.com

Women's Soccer   Season Record: 13-5-1, Big Ten 8-4-1

In the first round of the NCAA Tournament, No. 25/21 Rutgers downed LaSalle, 2-0 at Yurcak Field.  It was the first NCAA win for the Knights in two years.

Rutgers got on the board in the third minute of action when redshirt junior Amanda DeVolk bent one in from 20 yards out along the end line.  Senior Stef Scholz got in on the action in the 54th minute of play, receiving a nice pass from sophomore Madison Tiernan in the box before tapping it in. The goal was her team-leading seventh on the year.

Coach Mike O'Neill was very pleased with his team's effort as well as being able to host an NCAA game.  "It's so important to host. It's so important to get the community behind the University. On a cold night, we were still able to get in 1,000 people, and that's important. Our kids love playing at home in front of their friends, family and University.

"I thought we were very good tonight. One thing we talked about was that we've been good in our possession, but we wanted to get a final product, and we did that tonight. We scored two and had a number of other opportunities, so we're very happy with the way we played."

RU will travel to face No. 2-seeded Virginia (19-2) next Friday, Nov. 21, for the second round of the tournament after the Cavaliers defeated High Point, 8-0, Friday night in their first round contest.

NCAA Tournament - First Round

11/14/14

vs. La Salle

Yurcak Field

W, 2-0

11/21/14

at Virginia

Charlottesville, Va.

6:00 p.m. ET

Women's Basketball

The women opened the season with a very comfortable 76-52 win over St. Joseph's.  Sophomore guard Tyler Scaife led all scorers with 23 points on 9-of-13 shooting from the floor.  Redshirt junior guard Briyona Canty matched her career-best with 16 points and had a career-high eight assists. Senior Betnijah Laney posted a double-double with 10 points and 13 rebounds. Junior Kahleah Copper added in 14 points before leaving the game in the second half with a leg cramp.

11/18/14

vs. Northeastern

The RAC

7:00 p.m. ET

11/22/14

at LSU

Baton Rouge, La.

2:00 p.m. ET

Field Hockey

(from Rutgers Athletic Communications)

Rutgers field hockey sophomore back Sofia Walia was named to the 2014 Longstreth/NFHCA Division I All-Mid-Atlantic Region First Team, the National Field Hockey Coaches Association announced today. Walia is the first Rutgers player to be named First Team All-Region since Amy Lewis in 2007.

Walia was an impact player for the Scarlet Knights on the offensive and defensive ends. She provided a stout presence at center back for RU, while also posting seven goals, six assists and 20 points. The sophomore was tied for the team lead with three defensive saves and also had two game-winning goals. She was previously named Second Team All-Big Ten Conference.

The recognition is the second straight All-Region recognition for the sophomore. Walia, along with Sophie Wright was named to the Second Team All-Region Team last year.

Women's Cross Country

(from scarletknights.com)

The Rutgers women's cross country team placed 10th overall among the 29 teams competing and junior Paige Senatore was named all-region at the 2014 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional.  Senatore once again led the Scarlet Knights, as she took 22nd overall on the 6K course, and with her top 25 finish was named an All-MidAtlantic honoree. Senatore finished with a time of 21:14, which was .04 seconds faster than her previous race at the Big Ten Championships in early November in Iowa City, Iowa.

"The team goal was a top 10 finish and for Paige to reach all-region status. It's exciting to see the ladies work hard to obtain goals all season and then fulfill those goals," said head coach James Robinson. "One of the hardest tasks to achieve is staying healthy enough for our student-athletes to perform their best at the biggest competitions. They've been a very determined group and achieving a top 10 regional finish when we weren't even ranked during the season is a testament to their improvement."

Men's Cross Country

(from scarletknights.com)

The Rutgers men's cross country team was in action on Friday at the 2014 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional. The Scarlet Knights, who featured five freshmen and sophomores among its top six runners, finished in 20th overall.

"I thought our guys ran tough today. For three of our members, it was the first time they raced at 10,000 meter, which is twice the distance they ran last year in high school," said head coach Mike Mulqueen. "It is good experience for when they get older."

Freshman Alexander Livernois was the Scarlet Knights' top finisher for the first time this season. Livernois placed 94th overall racing to a time of 33:42 on the 10K course and was followed by junior Jaimin Vekaria in 101st with a time of 32:51.   Freshmen Trent Brinkofski and Luke Wiley also made their 10K debut. Brinkowski was the third Scarlet Knight to cross the finish line in a time of 33:05 to place 112th and Wiley ran to a time of 33:50 for 131st.

Wrestling  Season Record: 4-0

(information from scarletknights.com)

Wrestling picked up its first win against D1 competition as it won 8 of ten bouts in throttling Hofstra, 33-6.  Redshirt sophomore 125-pounder Sean McCabe opened the match with a 6-0 decision.  That was followed by two former South Plainfield HS standouts taking the mat at 133 and 141 pounds.  Sophomore 133-pounder Scott DelVecchio trailed Hofstra's Maverick Passaro, 8-7, with 53 seconds in the third period. Passaro held onto the advantage until the 22-second mark, when DelVecchio connected on a reversal to go ahead and ultimately win, 9-8.  Redshirt junior Anthony Perrotti improved to 4-0 on the season with a 9-2 decision over Jahlani Callender at 157 pounds. 

Rutgers took a 12-3 lead into the intermission and exploded in the second half of the dual. Redshirt junior 165-pounder Ethan Orr and redshirt sophomore Phil Bakuckas each recorded pins in their matches, while redshirt sophomore Anthony Pafumi controlled his 184-pound matchup with a 16-1 tech fall.

Junior 197-pounder Hayden Hrymack extended the bonus-point streak with a 13-3 major decision against Mike Oxley. The two were teammates in high school at Christian Brothers Academy (CBA), but Hrymack came out on the winning end Sunday to give Rutgers a 33-3 lead.  Hofstra's Mike Hughes ended the match with a 2-0 decision over freshman Wesley Bernard in the rookie's dual debut.  The other win for Hofstra came at 149 pounds from No. 17/NR/18 Cody Ruggirello, who topped No. 19/NR/20 Ken Theobold 5-2.

East Stroudsburg Open

The Rutgers wrestling team continued its early open tournament success this season, as two Scarlet Knights - freshman 133-pounder Anthony Giraldo and sophomore 141-pounder Tyson Dippery - were crowned champs at the East Stroudsburg Open.  Dippery has now won two consecutive ESU Open titles after going 5-0 last season to take first.  For Giraldo, it was the first open title of his young career. The rookie placed third at the Clarion Open on Nov. 2 in his first collegiate action.

Three other Scarlet Knights enjoyed solid days as top-four finishers. Redshirt freshman 184-pounder Taylor Jackson finished as runner-up, losing to No. 4/3/3 (Intermat/Open Mat/WIN) Lorenzo Thomas in the finals.  Redshirt sophomore 149-pounder Tyler Hunt placed in his first open tournament at Rutgers, going 9-1 to earn third place.

East Stroudsburg Open Results

  • Redshirt freshman 125-pounder Josh Patrick - (5-2) Tied for Fourth
  • Freshman 133-pounder Anthony Giraldo - (5-0) First Place
  • Sophomore 141-pounder Tyson Dippery - (6-0) First Place
  • Redshirt sophomore 149-pounder Tyler Hunt - (9-1) Third Place
  • Redshirt freshman 184-pounder Taylor Jackson - (5-1) Second Place

Volleyball  Season Record: 7-22, Big Ten 0-16

The squad dropped two matches last week, losing at Indiana, 3-0 and dropping a second conference match at the College Avenue Gym to Illinois, 3-0.  Against the Illini,  sophomore outside Micaela Anderson led the squad with season-highs in kills (11) and digs (9). Coming off the bench, junior outside Megan Stephenson added a season-best seven digs in the match. On the defensive side, Rutgers led the count in blocks, as middles Mikaela Matthews and Lauren Cloyd paced the squad with two blocks apiece. Againsr Indiana, Junior middle Mikaela Matthews knocked down 10 kills to lead the Scarlet Knights in the match. Senior setter Nicole Bayer chipped in with a team-high 14 assists. Rutgers maintained a strong front line at the net, out-blocking Indiana 9-6. Junior middle Eden Frazier led the pack with six blocks, followed by senior middle Rachel Andreassian with five stops.

11/19/14

at Purdue *

West Lafayette, Ind.

7:00 p.m. ET

11/22/14

at Michigan State *

East Lansing, Mich.

7:00 p.m. ET