May 6, 2012
[ONE // indiana… a basketball or baseball state?]
The state of Indiana has long been associated with the game of basketball, but looking at the Big Ten baseball standings this past week, one could argue that it should be known for baseball as well. Purdue continues to sit atop the conference standings with a 14-4 record in league play, while in-state rival Indiana trails in second at 11-7. Michigan State, Minnesota and Penn State are all tied for third at 10-8. The Boilermakers took a break from conference action this past week, opting to cruise out west for a series against No. 14 UCLA. On Sunday, Purdue erased a five-run deficit with a 10-run ninth-inning to shock the Bruins, 15-11. Meanwhile Indiana was hosting Nebraska for the first time since 1906. The Hoosiers ended the week with a 2-1 advantage over the Huskers to move into sole possession of second in the Big Ten standings.
[TWO // gopher, boiler baseball stars honored for schoolwork]
Two Big Ten baseball players earned Academic All-District honors, CoSIDA announced on Thursday. The honorees will now be placed on the national ballot for Academic All-America consideration, which will be announced at the end of May. Minnesota outfielder Troy Larson was named to the District 6 first team, while Purdue pitcher Joe Haase received first-team honors in District 5. Click here for the complete release.
[THREE // baseball trio named among nation’s best at shortstop]
Illinois' Thomas Lindauer, Nebraska's Chad Christensen and Purdue's David Miller were named to the 2012 Brooks Wallace Shortstop of the Year Award watch list, the College Baseball Hall of Fame announced on Thursday. The Wallace Award, sponsored by Mizuno, recognizes the nation's top shortstop and will be presented on June 30 in Lubbock, Texas, as part of the College Baseball Hall of Fame's Night of Champions. Click here for the complete release.
[FOUR // plot thickens in big ten softball race]
We are in the final home stretch in the race for the Big Ten Softball Championship and Michigan currently holds a slight advantage over Iowa in the standings. The Wolverines are 15-5 in Big Ten play this season, while Iowa is 14-7. Purdue sits third at 13-7, followed by Nebraska and Wisconsin tied for fourth at 12-8. U-M took the first two contests from Wisconsin this past week before the series finale was canceled due to rain. The Hawkeyes earned wins in the first two games of their series with Ohio State, but dropped the third and final game 2-1 in Columbus. This upcoming week marks the final week in Big Ten softball play.
[FIVE // diamond stars]
Four Big Ten softball student-athletes earned Academic All-District honors on Thursday, it was announced by CoSIDA. The honorees are placed on the national ballots for Academic All-America consideration and will be announced at the end of May. Ohio State infielder Alicia Herron and Purdue infielder Molly Garst earned first-team honors in District 5, while Nebraska pitcher Ashley Hagemann and outfielder Nikki Haget were named to the District 7 first team. Complete information on the awards and a list of all the honorees can be found here.
[SIX // big ten honors the best in men’s golf]
The Big Ten announced on Tuesday the men’s golf All-Conference teams and individual award winners with Illinois’ Luke Guthrie taking home the Big Ten Player of the Year award. Ohio State’s Grant Weaver was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year, while conference champion Illinois’ head coach Mike Small was tabbed Coach of the Year. The conference also announced its All-Big Ten teams, with Illinois’ Guthrie and Thomas Pieters, Indiana’s David Mills and Chase Wright, Iowa’s Barrett Kelpin and Northwestern’s Eric Chun earning first-team honors. Illinois’ Mason Jacobs, Iowa’s Chris Brant and Steven Ihm, Michigan’s Matt Thompson, Minnesota’s Erik Van Rooyen and Purdue’s Tyler Duncan claimed second-team honors. The Big Ten also recognized 12 Sportsmanship Award honorees, which can be found here in the complete release.
[SEVEN // …and the women too]
The Big Ten also announced on Tuesday the women’s golf All-Conference teams and individual award winners. Purdue’s Laura Gonzalez-Escallon earned the Big Ten Player of the Year award, Ohio State’s Kendall Prince took home Freshman of the Year accolades and Michigan State’s Stacy Slobodnik-Stoll earned Coach of the Year honors. The All-Big Ten first team features conference champion Michigan State’s Caroline Powers, Nebraska’s Madeleine Sheils, Ohio State’s Amy Meier and Rachel Rohanna, and Purdue’s Gonzalez-Escallon and Paula Reto. Also earning All-Conference honors were Michigan’s Yugene Lee, Michigan State’s Liz Nagel and Lindsey Solberg, Minnesota’s Banchalee Theinthong and Ohio State’s Susana Benavides and Prince, who each received second-team honors. In addition, the Big Ten recognized 12 Sportsmanship Award honorees, which can be found by clicking here.
[EIGHT // six men’s tennis squads earn ncaa bids]
Six Big Ten men's tennis teams have been selected to the NCAA Championships, the selection committee announced on Tuesday. Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Northwestern and Ohio State each earned berths to the national tournament, which gets underway on May 11 at campus sites. The Fighting Illini received an automatic bid to the championships after winning the Big Ten Tournament while the other five teams earned at-large bids. First- and second-round play takes place May 11-13 at campus sites. Subsequent rounds will be played at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga., from May 18-22. The championships will be hosted by the University of Georgia.
[NINE // big ten well-represented in ncaa men’s tennis singles and doubles draw]
Five Big Ten singles players and four conference doubles pairs have been selected to the NCAA Championships, the selection committee announced on Wednesday. Fourteen automatic qualifiers and 50 at-large selections make up the singles field, while 14 automatic berths and 18 at-large selections comprise the doubles field. Michigan’s Evan King leads the pack of Big Ten singles players, entering the tournament as the No. 6 seed after earning the conference’s automatic berth. Illinois’ Dennis Nevolo earned the No. 7 seed, while teammate Roy Kalmanovich received an at-large bid. Ohio State’s Chase Buchanan and Blaz Rola are seeded ninth and 14th, respectively. The Buckeyes’ Buchanan and Rola also earned an automatic berth and top-seed in the doubles draw. Illinois’ Kalmanovich and Nevolo, Penn State’s Jason Lee and Russell Bader, and Wisconsin’s Billy Bertha and Fredrik Ask will also be among the field of 32. The singles and doubles competition will be conducted May 23-28 at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga., following the conclusion of the team championship that runs May 18-22.
[TEN // six women’s tennis teams set for ncaa postseason action]
Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern and Purdue will represent the Big Ten at the NCAA Women’s Tennis Championship. The selections, which were announced this past Tuesday, mark the second time in the last three years the conference has boasted six seeds in the tournament. First- and second-round play takes place May 11-12 at campus sites. The winner of each sites advances to the round of 16 at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga., from May 18-22. The championships will be hosted by the University of Georgia. For a complete look at where the six teams are going and who they are playing, follow this link.
[ELEVEN // three singles, two doubles to represent big ten women’s tennis]
Three Big Ten singles players and two doubles duos have been selected to the 2012 NCAA Women’s Tennis Championships, as announced on Wednesday. Big Ten Champion Michigan and Big Ten Tournament Champion Northwestern will each send three players to the championships, while Iowa will be represented by a doubles pair. The Wolverines’ Emina Bektas earned the conference’s automatic singles bid, picking up the No. 9 seed in the 64-player field. Nebraska’s Mary Weatherholt and Northwestern’s Kate Turvy also earned a berth to the championships, receiving at-large bids in the draw. Bektas and teammate Brooke Bolender earned a berth in the doubles draw, entering the championships as the conference’s automatic bid. Northwestern’s Linda Abu Mushrefova and Nida Hamilton join the Wolverine duo in the 32-pair field. The singles and doubles competition will be conducted May 23-38 at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga., following the conclusion of the team championship that runs May 17-22.
[TWELVE // thanks for everything]
Finally this week, the Big Ten we would like to extend both its congratulations and a sincere thanks to all the student-athletes that celebrated their graduation this past weekend. Several schools held their graduation ceremonies across the conference landscape and the Big Ten could not be prouder of the effort its student-athletes displayed on the field and in the classroom. Job well done!