With temperatures rapidly rising, Vassar athletics heat up

Sophomore Alex Goff and the rest of the rowing team recently competed against Union College on Sunday, April 9. Next weekend, Vassar will compete against Albany on the Hudson River. / Courtesy of Carlisle Stockton

Women’s Rowing
After a slight delay due to high water levels, the Vassar women’s rowing team finally raced Union College on Sunday, April 9. The Brewers topped the Dutchwomen in both events of the day, the Varsity 8 with Coxswain and the 2nd Varsity 8 with Coxswain.

Vassar handily won the first event of the day in the 1V boat, which was stroked by sophomore Julia Blass and coxed by freshman Elle McKenzie. VC finished the 2000m in 8:42, eight seconds in front of its Union foe.

The Brewers continued demonstrating their prowess in the 2V as the team topped Union by five seconds, finishing the event in 9:58. The victory came with the help of freshman Parker Marks, who stroked the race, and McKenzie, who again served as Coxswain.

Following this impressive victory, the team will next host Sarah Lawrence College and the University of Albany on Saturday, April 15 on the Hudson River.

Men’s Rowing
Like the women’s side, the men’s rowing team took on the Union Dutchmen on Sunday, April 9. Despite disappointing results, both squads raced well and finished with strong times.

First up, the Vassar Varsity 8 with Coxswain faced both the Union 1V and the 2V 8’s. With a time of 7:41, the crew finished in front of Union’s 2V (7:57) but behind Union’s 1V (7:41).

Unfortunately, the second race of the day did not prove to be better for VC as the team faced its second loss of the day. Due to a very strong current, the event was cut from a 2000m to 1500m. The men’s novice 4 with Coxswain finished in second place with a time of 6:54, surpassing their previous spring break time significantly.

The team will next hit the water on Saturday, March 15 against Sarah Lawrence College and the University of Albany.

Freshman Andrea Wan celebrates after
an impressive shot at the Vassar College
Invitational. Wan topped the leaderboards after
day one, and finished seventh place overall. / Courtesy of Carlisle Stockton

Women’s Golf
This past weekend, the Brewers hosted the Vassar College Invitational, competing against 12 different colleges. Over the two day affair, VC performed well to finish seventh out of the 12 teams.

After day one, freshman Andrea Han was at the top of the leaderboards with an impressive score of 76, just four above par. With this score, Han was tied for first at the end of day one, as Vassar collectively finished tied for sixth with a score of 341, 53 points over par.

On the second day of the invitational, the squad finished with 343 for a combined total of 684, just one stroke away from Mount Holyoke.

Han continued her strong performance as she posted a score of 83 on Sunday, to finish in seventh place out of 64 players. Freshman Qiwen Tan clinched 29th place overall with a score of 171, followed by Hsu for 35th with a combined total of 174.

VC will take on Amherst College again next weekend as the team competes in the Jack Leaman Invitational on April 15 and 16.

Unfortunately, the road trip to Rochester, NY, turned out to be a difficult one for the baseball team, as VC lost all three games against the Rochester Institute of Technology.

On Friday, the RIT Tigers topped the Brewers 14-4, and then swept the Saturday doubleheader 4-11 and 3-6. Nevertheless, there were positive highlights of the weekend.

On Friday, Vassar took an early 2-0 lead at the top of the first with freshman Matt Martino bringing in senior Denis Shanagher for a run and freshman Daniel Bonfiglio sending home sophomore Taylor Smach. Then in the top of the sixth inning, sophomore Robert Pinataro scored a home run!

On Saturday, during the first game, VC was able to earn one more point against the Tigers during the first game of the day. Bonfiglio was back for more as he singled to bring home sophomore Alex Hartnett. Then another home run for Vassar! Smach hit a homerun to get runs from Martino and freshman Evan Trausch.

In the final game of the weekend, the Brewers again took an early 2-0 lead thanks to a single from sophomore Jake Doyle, who brought in junior Bobby Kinne, and Trausch, who earned the third home run for VC. Vassar scored the last run of the day as Smach brought in Martino to make the score 3-6.

After this tough weekend and facing the City College of New York University, the Burgundy and Gray will look to earn its first conference win against Union College at home on Friday, April 14 and Saturday, April 15.

Women’s Lacrosse
Vassar split its road trip to Rochester, NY, 1-1 as the team fell to the University of Rochester, but bounced back to handily defeat the Rochester Institute of Technology.

Against Rochester, VC fell into an early deficit as the Yellow Jackets advanced to a 5-0 within the first 20 minutes. The Brewers finally reached the boards with the help of sophomore Fiona MacLeod who was assisted by freshman Kelly Pushie. Next up for the squad was junior Storm Sideleau with an unassisted goal, followed by one from Pushie with an assist from senior Julia Trudell.

The Brewers then had a late run within the last 11 minutes, rallying four goals to bring the deficit to one. Goals were scored by freshman Tessa Waters (2), Trudell (1) and Pushie (1). However, this run was not enough and the team fell 7-8 to Rochester.

The next day, the Brewers rebounded to earn a strong win over the RIT Tigers 12-7. Pushie continued to dominate as she contributed four goals and one assist against RIT. Sideleau also tallied four goals, followed by Trudell and Waters both with two goals apiece. To help the team score, senior Phoebe Hankins handed out three assists against the Tigers.

VC will head into more Liberty League play as the squad takes on Bard College on Friday, April 13 at home.

Men’s Volleyball
It’s official, the No. 2 men’s volleyball team cannot stop winning. After defeating both Hunter College and Alvernia University on Saturday, April 8 for their 14th uninterrupted win, the Brewers surpassed program record for most consecutive wins.

The team first took down No. 10 Hunter 3-0 with set scores of 25-17, 25-21, 25-22. Junior Matthew Knigge led the team in kills with 12, followed by seniors Quinn Rutledge (11) and Christian Lizana (9). Lizana also contributed 11 digs, an ace and an assist. Meanwhile, senior Trey Cimorelli led the squad with 13 digs while sophomore George Diehl finished with a team-high six blocks.

Later against Alvernia, the Burgundy and Gray did not lose any steam as they earned the win in three sets 25-19, 25-18, 25-14. During this match, the team hosted Senior Day, in which they honored the talented senior class of Lizana, Rutledge and Cimorelli. The team earned this win by forcing the Crusaders to a negative hitting percentage.

Knigge continued his strong performance, as he posted 13 kills, followed by Rutledge with 7 and Lizana with 6. Junior Zechariah Lee led the squad with 28 assists, while Ros and Cimorelli each dished out a team-high seven digs.

The Brewers will next compete in the United Volleyball Conference finals and semifinals on April 14 and 15 in Kenyon Hall.

Women’s Tennis
The women’s tennis team traveled to Mount Holyoke College to take home a third consecutive Seven Sisters Championship title, the 10th Vassar title in program history.

On Saturday, April 8, the Brewers swept both Bryn Mawr College and Smith College 5-0.

In their Seven Sisters debut, the freshmen shined. Tara Edwards earned a 6-1, 6-0 win at No. 1 singles against Bryn Mawr, while clinching three victories at No. 1 doubles with sophomore Morgane Flournoy against Smith, Mount Holyoke and Wellesley. Meanwhile, freshmen Vista Grinde and Ashley Fair earned a 6-1, 6-0 win at No. 2 doubles against Bryn Mawr.

Grinde also posted a win at No. 3 singles against Smith, and three victories at No. 2 doubles with junior Dasha Ivenitsky versus Smith, Mount Holyoke and Wellesley.

Other wins came from juniors Lauren DiFazio and Kate Christensen and seniors Connie Yoo and Shayna Becker. DiFazio posted a win at No. 3 singles against Bryn Mawr, while Christensen, Becker and Yoo all collected multiple victories at No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 singles, respectively.

With another trophy for the bookshelves, Vassar looks to face the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) on Saturday, April 15.

Women’s Rugby
Despite St. Michael’s College strong reputation, the women’s rugby team annihilated the Purple Knights 88-5.

Senior Mary Margaret McElduff led Vassar’s efforts, contributing an impressive nine conversions and a try. In terms of tries, sophomore Rachel Elson and senior Nathalie Freeman headed the pack with three tries each on the day. Then to add 10 points, freshman Caroline James scored two tries.

The remaining points came from senior Laila Blumenthal-Rothchild, juniors Michelle Urrutia, Alicia Menard-Livingston, Kayla Lightner and Andrea Ramsay.

Vassar dominated from the start, taking a 57-0 lead in the first half. Therefore, Vassar pulled its seven starters to allow the rest of its roster to play.

The Brewers will next head into a match against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) on Saturday, April 15.

Men’s Rugby
Unfortunately, the men’s rugby team fell 15-53 to St. Michael’s College due to too many turnovers. Nevertheless, the Brewers had some shining moments on the day.

Despite strong defense from St. Michael’s, VC was able to score three tries. After the squad fell quickly 0-5, sophomore Louis Brown tied the game with a try, putting the Brewers on the scoreboard. Unfortunately, VC could not hold onto this tie and trailed 19-5 at halftime.

St. Michael’s continued its run, increasing its lead to 32-5. Sophomore Dale Lord continued to fight and scored another try for the Burgundy and Gray. Then, junior Kaden Wood scored the third and final try for the Brewers.

Vassar hopes to turn things around before the 2017 The Beast of the East Tournament on Saturday, April 22 and Sunday, April 23.

Men’s Track and Field
The Brewers raced in both the Howell Invitational and the College of New Jersey Invitation on Friday, April 7 and Saturday, April 8.

At the Howell Invitational, senior Gabe Fishman started off strong with a first place finish. Fishman clinched first in the 800m with a time of 1:58.69, winning far in front of his competitors. Meanwhile, junior Jared Fishman clinched second place in the 1500m with a 4:02.96.

In the long 5000m, freshman Adin Becker took home 24th place, beating out many Division I runners with a 15:11.85. With this time, Becker clinched the third fastest 5000m time in program history as well as qualifying for the ECAC Championships. Close behind, junior Philip Brown registered a time of 15:19.66 for ninth place in his heat and 35th overall, also earning an ECAC qualification.

Then on Saturday, the men’s track team raced in the TCNJ Invitational.

Junior Kyle Estrada shined as he clinched fifth place in the 400m with a personal-best time of 50.32. Estrada joined Fishman, senior Elijah Winston and freshman Skylar Widman for the 4×400 relay to take home fourth place with a collective time of 3:29.29. Next up, Freedman finished in 11th place in the 800m, while Widman clinched 19th in the 100m dash. Then, freshman Jonah Goldenbird took home 19th place in the pole vault with 3.40 meters. Junior Jesse Schatz finished in 14th in the 3000m as sophomore Ry Blume earned 18th in the 800m.

The Vassar men’s track and field team now looks to compete in the Silfin Invitational on April 14 and 15 .

Women’s Track and Field
The Vassar women’s track team had two competitions this past weekend: the Sam Howell Invitational and the College of New Jersey Invitational. In both meets, Brewers found success.

In the 800m, senior Lucy Balcezak earned 14th place with a time of 2:21.29, while fellow senior Alex Gittens clinched 17th with a 2:23.52. Then in the 1500m, sophomore Acadia DiNardo posted a time of 19:04.42 to earn 24th in the second heat.

The next day, the squad returned to the track for the College of New Jersey Invitational.

In the 3000m, Matera found success with a personal-best 10:42.35 to clinch third place. Right behind Matera was senior Laura MacDonald, who finished in fourth with a 10:45.91. Next up, junior Katie Voegtlin earned 10th place, sophomore Megan Horn took home 12th and fellow sophomore Kate Lawson finished in 13th place.

In field events, freshmen Penelope Mort Ranta, Jackie Cenan and Max Wagh and sophomore Annelise Depman also found success. Mort Ranta earned seventh place in the high jump with height of 4’11”, setting a new school record along the way. Meanwhile, Depman finished in seventh in the triple jump, while Cenan took home fifth place in shot put and 18th in the discus. Wagh finished in 12th in the pole vault.

Gittens was back for more as she as she finished in seventh place overall and second place in her heat with a time of 1:01.14. Meanwhile 4x400m relay consisting of Gittens, Balcezak and junior Eliana Marcus-Tyler and senior Saparja Nag clinched third place with a collective time of 4:06.78.

VC will next race in the Silfin Invitational at Connecticut College on Friday, April 14 and Saturday, April 15.

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