Vassar opened its fall season on the road, competing in the Swarthmore College Invitational over the past weekend. In singles, junior Kate Christensen got her season started by edging Swarthmore’s Emma Kassan 7-5, 6-4. Senior and captain Shayna Becker made short work of Ally Santerelli of La Salle, claiming the 6-2, 6-1 victory.
Junior Dasha Ivenitsky and sophomore Morgane Flournoy also fared well against their Swarthmore opponents, winning 7-6, 6-1 and 6-3, 6-4 respectively in their opening singles matches. The two would team for a victory in doubles competition later that day, strolling to an 8-1 win over La Salle. Vassar picked up four wins overall in doubles, kicked off by Becker and freshman Tara Edwards teaming up for a tough 9-7 win over Emily Shutman and Julia Gan of Haverford.
The first day of play saw three freshmen Brewers compete at the collegiate level for the first time. Vista Grinde won 7-6, 6-1 over La Salle’s Jade Smith, while three-star recruit Edwards cruised through her first singles match against Maansi Malhotra from La Salle 6-1, 6-1. Ashley Fair was competitive throughout but couldn’t quite pull off the victory in her first match, falling 7-6, 2-6, 7-10 to Julia Gohkberg of Swarthmore.
Vassar continued to find success on Sunday, with singles wins from Edwards, Fair, Ivenitsky, Flournoy, senior Connie Yoo and junior Lauren DiFazio, as well as several doubles victories.
This weekend the Brewers will host the Vassar Scramble where they will compete against New York University, Connecticut College and New Paltz.
The Brewer women hosted the Vassar Invitational over the weekend and went a perfect four for four, besting University of New England, Purchase College, Alfred University and University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, all in convincing, straight-set fashion.
The opening day of the Invitational saw Vassar take the court against Purchase College, but not for very long, as the Panthers struggled to keep matters competitive, falling to the Brewers 25-3, 25-6, 25-15. The women next took down the University of New England in a more contested matchup of 25-11, 25-18, 25-19.
On day two of the Vassar Invitational, the Brewers faced their toughest competition in the Pitt-Bradford Panthers, whom they would best 25-22, 25-20, 27-25. In the last game of the weekend, Vassar saw off the Alfred University Saxons, 25-19, 25-14, 25-15.
Women’s volleyball, beyond claiming the overall tournament title, also earned individual honors: Junior hitter Alex Sams was named to the All-Tournament Team, while sophomore Annie MacMillan picked up tournament MVP accolades.
This weekend, the Brewers are diving right into Liberty League play, taking on St. Lawrence University and Bard College on Sept. 16. Then they challenge Clarkson University and Rochester Institute of Technology on Sept. 17.
The Brewers have gotten their season off on the right foot, notching five wins in a row, the best start since the 2007 season. The men extended their winning streak to four with a 2-0 victory at home over the Pioneers of William Paterson University on Saturday.
Sophomore defender Mitch Davis scored his first collegiate goal in the 16th minute to put the Brewers up 1-0, with the assist provided by freshman forward Mattie Mrlik. Mrlik would double the Brewers’ lead 11 minutes from time, finishing at close range off a lofted free kick from junior Hayden Van Brewer. Junior netminder Matt Marcelino made four saves in his 80 minutes before coming off for freshman Will Marment.
The Brewers put another win in the books on Sunday, routing Elms College 7-0. Seven different Brewers found the back of the net. Junior mid Reid Smith opened proceedings in the 25th minute for the only goal of the first half. The second half saw juniors Jose Novas and Tanner Sands, senior captain Noah Bloch, freshmen Mrlik and Kevin Baliat and sophomore Desmond Curran tally goals against a porous Elms defense.
On Wednesday, the men went up against New Paltz. This Saturday, they will face Oneonta in an away game.
Vassar College Women’s Soccer fell 2-0 on the road versus the Stevens Institute of Technology Ducks at the 13th annual Stevens Engineering Cup on Saturday. Stevens outshot Vassar 12-11, but the Brewers outshot the Ducks in shots-on-goal 5-4. The Ducks were able to capitalize on scoring chances late in the first half and 15 minutes from full time.
The Brewers were edged again by Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Hoboken on Sunday. MIT got off to a quick start, finding the back of the net just three minutes into play. The Engineers manufactured an identical start to the second half, poking in a second goal in the 48th minute.
In the 61st minute, however, sophomore Audrey Pillsbury found the net off a rebounded shot from fellow sophomore Sara Seper to narrow the margin for the Brewers. Vassar was unable to produce an equalizer though, and the Engineers came out with a 2-1 victory. Vassar will compete against Oneonta on Saturday Sept. 17 at Gordon Field.
Returning 10 starters from last year’s Fall Final 4 team, Vassar Women’s Rugby walloped inexperienced Siena College at the Farm on Sunday by a score of 70 to 5. Senior flanker Nathalie Freeman piled on the scoring for VC, racking up five tries on the day, while seniors Laila Blumenthal-Rothchild and Mariah Ghant scored twice and once respectively.
Sophomore Rachel Elson scored a try and a trio of juniors Kayla Lightner, Andrea Ramsay and Amanda Saich, added a try each as well. Senior flyhalf Mary Margaret McElduff tacked on 10 additional points for the Brewers, sending home five Cons.
The women’s B-side was also in action on Sunday, taking on their Route 9 rivals, Marist College. Junior Yasani Spencer opened the scoring, while her fellow juniors Michelle Urrutia and Alicia Menard-Livingston each added two tries of their own.
After a first half deficit, the Brewers pulled away for final score of 33-15 over the Red Foxes. Sophomore Makena Emery was efficient on the day, connecting on four of five conversion attempts.
Looking to continue the season’s strong start, the Brewers will travel on Saturday to take on the University of Albany.
A thinned-out Men’s Rugby squad took the field for their home opener against Rugby debutants Monroe College at the Vassar Farm on Sunday Morning, coming away with a 45-7 victory. Senior captain Seamus Taylor notched a try, as did juniors Nick Olkovsky and Dale Lord, while junior Joe Simon and sophomore Charlie Hooghkirk each had a brace.
Vassar had the lion’s share of possession and control of the field but found themselves down 7-5 early to the athletic but raw Monroe squad. The scoring chances would dry up for the visitors though, as mounting penalties from Monroe and improved play from the Brewers led to a final score of 45-7, with Vassar dominating the second 40 minutes of play at the farm, scoring 33 points in the second half. Stephen Kpundeh went five for seven on conversion attempts on the day, tacking on 10 points for the Brewer A-side.
On Sunday, the men will travel to Annandale-On-Hudson to tackle Bard College.
Men’s & Women’s Cross Country
The Vassar College men’s and women’s cross country teams hosted the annual Ron Stonitsch Invitational at the Vassar Farm, named for longtime coach Ron Stonitsch, who has been with the program from the very beginning in 1982.
All the runners, beyond attempting to best their competitors, also had to contend with sweltering, humid conditions on Saturday morning. The field of 225 runners on the men’s side was the largest in the history of meets at Vassar, while the field of 197 runners on the women’s side was also a record number of participants.
Junior Michael Scarlett paced the Brewers, looking unaffected by the heat, finishing 13th overall with a time of 19:42.4. Fellow junior Philip Brown kicked into high gear in the home stretch, moving up more than 10 spots in the last 800 meters to finish 19th, with a time of 19:54.0.
Freshman Adin Becker also turned in a solid time of 20:02.3, good for 25th place overall. The lone senior runner, Gabe Fishman, was seventh among Vassar entrants and 59th overall with a time of 20:36.8.
The Brewer men finished fourth with 128 points, edging Stevens Institute of Technology, who had 143 points. Williams College came away with the team title with 31 points; RPI finished second with 57 points, and NYU finished third with 61 points. All three were ranked in the United States Track and Cross Country Coaches Association of American Top 25 poll.
With 156 points, women’s cross country finished in seventh place in a field of talented teams. Senior Lucy Balcezak continued her strong run of form, finishing first for the Brewers. She finished 26th overall with a time of 19:55.1 and was the only Vassar runner with a time under 20 minutes.
Senior Laura MacDonald was the second runner to cross the line for the Brewers Saturday, chalking up a 20:05.1 to take 31st place overall. Sophomore Christiana Prater-Lee had a strong showing, finishing with a time of 20:05.9.
In the women’s competition, the Ephs of Williams earned the team title with 41 points; Stevens was second with 74 points and RPI third with 112 points.
Both teams will race in the Rowan University Invitational on Saturday in Glassboro, NJ.
Vassar breezed past the College at Brockport 9-0 at home on Weinberg Field this past Saturday. The Brewers’ tally of nine goals in a game was the most since Oct. 5, 2013, when Vassar scored 11 on Morrisville State. Vassar outshot Brockport 34-1 Saturday, and earned all 20-penalty corners for the game. The Brewers produced an offensive onslaught in the first half of play, outshooting the Golden Eagles 16-1 and notching three goals.
In the second half, Vassar would break the Brockport defense wide open, knocking in six scores to soundly complete the rout. Senior Hayley Beach had an efficient two goals from two shots on target; sophomore Midfielder Gracie Tavakkol scored twice from two shots on target with an assist; senior captain Emma Bracken played facilitator, tallying four assists and two shots on goal, while sophomore Alyssa More had three shots on target, one goal and one assist. Sophomore Paige Amico and freshman Liz Rotolo can share credit for the shut out, with each turning in a 35-minute shift on the day.
The Brewers have a packed week of competition ahead. They played Western Connecticut State yesterday. Then on Saturday the Brewers will go up against Ramapo College, followed by William Paterson Univerity on Monday.
Women’s golf started its 2016-17 season Sunday afternoon in winning fashion, sweeping Union College at the Casperkill Golf Course. The Brewers and Dutchwomen played a modified match format on the par-72 course, playing all 18 holes with match play scoring. Two Vassar freshmen, Andrea Han and Qiwen Tan, debuted at the number one and two spots. Junior Annie Hsu sealed the victory at number three, while sophomore Evon Shay and senior Emily Prince completed the sweep at numbers four and five respectively.
Vassar will play in the Ann S. Batchelder Invitational in Wellesly, MA this weekend.