Vassar athletics excel in Spring 2023 season

This spring, Vassar athletic teams did not disappoint. Throughout the semester teams excelled on a national stage and went further in conference competition than ever before.

 

Men’s Volleyball

 

After a loss in their second game of the season, the Vassar men’s volleyball team rode a dominant 25-game winning streak all the way to the Final Four. On April 6, the team avenged its only loss to date to the Stevens Institute of Technology, the top ranked team in the country at the time. After finishing that week with two more wins, including one over national semifinalist Messiah University, the Brewers received their first No. 1 overall ranking in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll in program history. As the top ranked team in the country, the Brewers continued to excel, finishing United Volleyball Conference regular season play undefeated. The team then won the conference tournament as the host school with a 3-0 win over St. John Fisher University, who ended the Brewers’ season in 2022 in the conference semifinals. As champions of the UVC, one of the most competitive conferences in Division III men’s volleyball, Vassar earned the number one overall seed in the NCAA tournament. Vassar hosted Baruch College in the first round and advanced to the quarterfinals with a 3-0 win. The next day, Vassar faced off against Southern Virginia University and won 3-1 to advance to the Final Four for the fourth time in program history. The Brewers finished the season undefeated at home and saw their impressive season come to an end in the national semifinals against North Central College. 

 

In addition to tremendous team success, Vassar enjoyed an abundance of individual recognition. Head Coach Richard Gary was named the UVC and national coach of the year—the first time in program history a coach has won the national award. Similarly, Andrew Kim ’23 was named the UVC player of the year and the national player of the year, marking the first time any Vassar athlete has garnered such national recognition. Gavin van Beveren ’23, Jacob Kim ’24 and Adam Gulick ’23 also earned all-conference recognition and Tristan Christofferson ’26 was named the UVC co-rookie of the year. The Brewers also had van Beveren, Jacob Kim and Andrew Kim honored as first team All-Americans by the AVCA. At the Vassar Athletics Department’s Annual Brewer Award Ceremony, van Beveren was awarded the Matthew Vassar Outstanding Career from a men’s team award and Jacob Kim was awarded the Betty Richey Performer of the Year from a men’s team award.

 

Women’s Lacrosse

Anchored by senior standout play and leadership, the Vassar women’s lacrosse team enjoyed a historic season as the Brewers advanced to the Liberty League semifinals for the first time since the league expanded the postseason in 2015. Seeded sixth in the conference tournament, Vassar defeated third seed St. Lawrence University in a thrilling first round matchup by a narrow margin of 13-11. Vassar finished the regular season with five Liberty League victories, the most the program has posted since 2019, and a total record of 9-7. 

 

Offensively, Maddy Kretten ’23 led the team with 47 goals and 17 assists. Annie Uyeki ’23 thrived as the team’s top facilitator and finished the season with a team high 32 assists while also contributing 18 goals, which is good for fifth on the team. Kateri Sanseviro ’23 also had an impressive senior season, posting 27 goals and 19 assists. Emma Torkelson ’25 and Reilly Mulcahy ’25 emerged as standout sophomores, finishing the season with 34 and 24 goals, respectively. Lauren Johns ’24 led the way in goal with 143 total saves and a strong save percentage of .444. Trina Chou ’23 was another crucial part of the Brewers’ defense and won the Vassar Scholar-Athlete from a women’s team award. Also honored was Uyeki, who won the Frances D. Fergusson Coaches Award. 

 

The team also had five athletes honored as All-Conference selections: Chou was named to the first team, Mulcahy and Torkelson were named to the second team and Kretten and Uyeki were named honorable mentions.

 

Women’s Tennis

 

The Vassar women’s tennis team also enjoyed a successful season with a 12-6 overall record and a 7-1 conference record. The team earned the top seed in the Liberty League tournament and defeated St. Lawrence University 5-0 in their semifinal matchup before falling to Skidmore College in the league championship match, the Brewers’ sixth straight appearance in the conference championship. The team’s impressive season also merited department-wide recognition as Macey Dowd ’25 was named a finalist for the Betty Richey Performer of the Year from a women’s team award and Erin McCusker ’26 was a finalist for the Vassar Rookie of the Year from a women’s team award. 

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