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Big Ten Weekly Honors: Banner week for Rutgers MLAX

Rutgers won three weekly awards from the Big Ten Conference on Monday. Senior midfielder Joe Nardella won Specialist of the Week, junior midfielder Zack Sikora was named Defensive Player of the Week and Jules Heningburg was named Co-Freshman of the Week. Oh yeah, some other people were recognized, too.

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Men's Lacrosse

Offensive Player of the Week

Ryan Brown, Johns Hopkins, A - Jr. - Sykesville, Md.

  • Matched his career-high with eight goals in the Blue Jays' 15-12 win over No. 3/3 Maryland, helping Johns Hopkins earn a share of the Big Ten Championship and secure the top seed in the Big Ten Tournament
  • Scored six goals in the second half, including four in the fourth quarter during a 6-2 run by the Blue Jays
  • In conference play, led the Big Ten with 5.40 goals and 5.80 points per game

Defensive Player of the Week

Zack Sikora, Rutgers, M - Jr. - Clifton, Va.

  • Gathered seven ground balls in the Scarlet Knight's 17-10 win over No. 10/11 Ohio State, helping Rutgers post its first win over a top-10 opponent since 2003
  • Contributed offensively with one goal and one assist
  • Collects his first Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week award
  • The junior was also named NCAA Defensive Player of the Week, USILA Defensive Player of the Week and ECAC Division I Metro/Upstate Defensive Player of the Week on Wednesday.

Specialist of the Week

Joe Nardella, Rutgers, M - Sr. - Cazenovia, N.Y.

  • Won 19-of-28 faceoffs and scooped up nine ground balls in the Scarlet Knights' win over nationally ranked Ohio State
  • Scored two goals on two shots
  • Won 11-of-17 faceoffs in the first half, including 7-of-8 in the second quarter
  • Currently leads the Big Ten with 8.33 ground balls per game
  • Earns his third career Big Ten Specialist of the Week honor

Co-Freshmen of the Week

Hunter Moreland, Johns Hopkins, FO - White Hall, Md.

  • Secured 15-of-25 faceoffs and gathered six ground balls in the Blue Jays' 15-12 win over No. 3/3 Maryland, helping Johns Hopkins claim a share of the Big Ten Championship
  • Won 7-of-8 faceoffs in the fourth quarter when the Blue Jays outscored Maryland, 6-2

Jules Heningburg, Rutgers, A - Maplewood, N.J. - Seton Hall Prep

  • Recorded his third hat trick of the season in Rutgers' 17-10 win over No. 10/11 Ohio State
  • Scored the Scarlet Knights' first goal of the game, and added two second-half goals
  • During conference play, led Rutgers with 10 goals
  • Earns his third Big Ten Freshman of the Week honor and second in as many weeks

Women's Lacrosse

Offensive Player of the Week

Taylor Cummings, Maryland, M - Jr. - Ellicott City, Md.

  • Scored four goals in a win over nationally ranked Penn State, lifting the Terrapins to the outright Big Ten Championship and No. 1 seed in the inaugural Big Ten Tournament
  • Scored Maryland's first two goals of the game, and added back-to-back scores in the second half to push the Terrapins' lead to three goals
  • In conference play, led the Big Ten with 4.20 points per game, and was tied for second with 3.00 goals per contest

Defensive Player of the Week

Bridget Bianco, Northwestern, GK - Sr. - Moorsetown, N.J. - Moorestown

  • Tallied 10 saves and recorded a .765 save percentage in the Wildcats' win over nationally ranked Ohio State in the conference finale for both teams, helping Northwestern secure the No. 3 seed in the Big Ten Tournament
  • Limited Ohio State to six goals in the 16-6 victory, more than seven goals below the Buckeyes' season average
  • Recorded her fourth double-digit save performance of the season

Freshman of the Week

Corinne Wessels, Northwestern, A - Manassas, Va.

  • Matched her season high with two goals to go along with three assists, en route to a team-high five points in the 16-6 win over No. 8 Penn State
  • Scored one goal and tallied two assists in the first half, before adding one goal in the second frame
  • In conference play, was tied for first with two game-winning goals, and ranked fourth in the Big Ten with 1.25 assists per game

Softball

Player of the Week
Andrea Filler, Northwestern, Jr., SS, Fort Wayne, Ind.

  • Led the conference with a 1.214 slugging percentage and 12 RBI, guiding Northwestern to three conference victories against Illinois and Ohio State
  • Scored six runs and belted two home runs, while compiling a .643 batting average and .714 on-base percentage
  • Reached base at least twice in all five contests and drove in multiple runs in four games

Pitcher of the Week
Sara Groenewegen, Minnesota, So., RHP, White Rock, British Columbia

  • Recorded three complete-game shutouts last week, including two in conference play and a no-hitter against North Dakota State
  • Scattered three total hits, holding opposing hitters to a conference-low .064 batting average
  • Struck out 25 batters, including nine in each victory over Iowa

Freshman of the Week
McKenzie Long, Michigan State, 2B/SS, Alta Loma, Calif.

  • Paced all Big Ten players with a .727 batting average last week, while registering a .714 on-base percentage and a 1.000 slugging percentage
  • Recorded at least one hit in each game, including two hits in each game against Indiana, and now leads the Spartans with a .368 batting average in conference play
  • Scored three runs and tallied three RBI

Baseball

Co-Players of the Week
Casey Fletcher, Illinois, Sr., OF, Oakwood, Ill.

  • Helped Illinois extend the nation's longest-active winning streak to 17 games with a .500 batting average (8-for-16) in a 4-0 week, including a series sweep of Penn State
  • Collected at least one hit in each game, including the game-winning RBI single in the 15th inning of game two versus the Nittany Lions
  • Tallied a .688 on-base percentage and .818 slugging percentage in the Penn State series

Jimmy Frankos, Iowa , Jr., C, Park Ridge, Ill.

  • Posted a .545 (6-for-11) batting average with a hit in all four games, including a pair of multi-hit games in a win over Northern Illinois and a series sweep of nationally ranked Nebraska
  • Batted 2-for-3 in a win over the Huskies to open the week
  • Recorded an RBI in each game, including the game-winning RBI single in the bottom of the 10th inning, sending Iowa to a 3-2 come-from-behind victory over the Huskers

Pitcher of the Week
Mick VanVossen, Michigan State , Sr., RHP, Ada, Mich.

  • Threw a one-hit complete-game shutout in a 7-0 win over Indiana
  • Recorded a 0.00 ERA, striking out a season-high eight batters
  • Retired the final 13 hitters of the game

Freshman of the Week
Jake Bivens, Michigan, SS, Battle Creek, Mich.

  • Hit .462 (6-for-13) on the week as Michigan went 3-1 with a win over Oakland and a series victory over Minnesota
  • Batted 4-for-4 with two runs scored, two RBI, two stolen bases and a sacrifice fly in the series finale against the Gophers
  • Recorded an RBI-single to break a 3-3 tie in the final game against Minnesota

Rowing

Boat of the Week

Ohio State First Varsity Eight

  • Collected wins over No. 13 Michigan, No. 17 Syracuse and Michigan State at the Griggs Reservoir on the Scioto River, hosted by the Buckeyes
  • Closed out the regular season 10-0 in races, while also extending their record to 22-0 in races overall since the start of the 2014 season
  • Boat edged No. 13 Michigan by five seconds, No. 17 Syracuse by 10 seconds and Michigan State by 26 seconds with a time of 6:19.8

Men's Golf Championships

Illinois claimed the Big Ten Championship in men's golf on Sunday after shooting a four-round team score of 1,138 in the 2015 Big Ten Men's Golf Championships at Victoria National Golf  Course. The Fighting Illini were followed by second-place Iowa (1,170), Minnesota and Penn State, which tied for third-place (1,181), and Ohio State and Wisconsin (1,183), which finished in a tie for fifth-place.

Illinois earned the Big Ten's automatic berth to the NCAA Championships, claiming its 13th team title and first since winning five straight championships from 2009-13.

Rutgers men's golf placed 14th with a 1274 (328-322-312-312) total at the Big Ten Championships, played Friday through Sunday at Victoria National Golf Club. Freshman Toks Pedro paced the Scarlet Knights, carding a 309 (78-75-83-73) to finish tied for 51st in the 70-player field.

Illinois' Nick Hardy and Iowa's Carson Schaake shared the individual Big Ten title, shooting a four-under par score of 284. The Fighting Illini's Thomas Detry and Maryland's David Kocher tied for third-place (286), while Illinois' Brian Campbell and Minnesota's Jose Mendez finished in a tie for fifth-place (288) individually. The top six student-athletes earned a spot on the Big Ten All-Championships team.

Detry was also honored with the Big Ten's Les Bolstad Award, given to the conference player with the lowest stroke average (70.44) during the 2014-15 season.

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Women's Golf Championships

Northwestern and Ohio State shared the Big Ten Championship in women's golf on Sunday after shooting a three-round score of 863 at the 2015 Big Ten Women's Golf Championships. The Wildcats and Buckeyes were followed by third-place Purdue (872), fourth-place Michigan State (878) and fifth-place Michigan (882) at the par-72, 6,221-yard Fort Golf Resort. Due to the Big Ten's tiebreaking procedures, the Buckeyes earned the conference's automatic berth to the NCAA Championship.

The Rutgers women's golf team wrapped play at the Championship placing 14th place with a 926 (309-313-304).  Freshman Emily Mills and junior Christina Paulsen tied for 46th to lead the Scarlet Knights during the three-round championships. The pair scored a 229 with Mills shooting 78, 76 and 75, while Paulsen carded 77, 76 and 76.

Northwestern won its second Big Ten title, while Ohio State secured its 13th Big Ten Championship. Northwestern's Sarah Cho won the individual Big Ten title, shooting a three-under-par 213 (72-70-71). Maryland's Juliet Vongphoumy and Ohio State's Katja Pogacar shared second (214), followed by Ohio State's Jan Chanpalangsri in fourth (215) and Buckeyes' Rio Watanabe and Jessica Porvasnik joined Purdue's Marta Martin and Michigan State's Lindsey McPherson in fifth. All eight student-athletes earned a spot on the Big Ten All-Championships team.

Vongphuomy was also honored with the Mary Fossum Award, honoring the conference's player with the lowest stroke average (+1.37) relative to par this season.

Women's Track

Track Athlete of the Week

Cindy Ofili, Michigan, Jr. – Ypsilanti, Mich.

Field Athlete of the Week

Kelsey Card, Wisconsin, Jr. – Plainview, Ill.


Men's Track

Track Athlete of the Week

DJ Zahn, Illinois, Sr. – Morton, Ill.

Co-Field Athletes of the Week

Darrell Hill, Penn State, Sr. – Philadelphia, Pa.

Michael Lihrman, Wisconsin, Sr. – Rice Lake, Wis.

Women's Tennis Championships

With a 4-0 victory over No. 2-seeded Ohio State, top-seeded Michigan won the 2015 Big Ten Women's Tennis Tournament Championship Sunday afternoon at Combe Tennis Center in Evanston, Ill. The Wolverines earned their first conference tournament crown.

In doubles play, Michigan’s Emina Bektas and Alex Najarian defeated Gabriella De Santis and Sandy Niehaus, 8-7 (9-7), while the Wolverines’ Ronit Yurovsky and Sarah Lee topped Miho Kowase and Ferny Angeles Paz, 8-6.

Picking up singles wins for Michigan was Bektas, Yurovsky and Lee. Bektas defeated De Santis, 6-3, 6-1, while Yurovsky posted a 6-1, 6-3 win over Anna Sanford. Lee secured a 6-2, 6-3 win over Angeles Paz.

With the win, Michigan earns the conference's automatic berth to the NCAA Championships, which will be held May 14-25.