May 26, 2014
Xavier Baseball Slated In The Nashville Regional For The NCAA Postseason
The Musketeers Face Vanderbilt On Friday, May 30
CINCINNATI – The BIG EAST Champion Xavier Musketeers are seeded fourth in the Nashville regional as chosen by the NCAA selection committee Monday afternoon, where XU is pitted against regional host and No. 1-seed Vanderbilt. No. 2 Oregon takes on No. 3 Clemson in the other half of the region.
Xavier opens its NCAA postseason on Friday, May 30 at 8:00 p.m. (ET) at Hawkins Field, the home turf of the Commodores. The game will be streamed on ESPN3, a subscription-based programming network.
The Nashville Region, along with all other NCAA regions, will run as a double-elimination tournament. The winner of each region advances to the Super Regionals for a three-game series to determine who goes to the 2014 College World Series.
A watch party was held to view the NCAA Selection Show on ESPNU and celebrations began as Xavier made the NCAA postseason for the first time since 2009 and just the second time in program history.
Xavier earned the automatic bid to the regionals after winning three-straight in the BIG EAST Championship this past weekend, knocking out St. John’s, Seton Hall and finally shutting out Creighton in the title game, 5-0.
Mitch Elliot, BIG EAST Championship Most Outstanding Player and All-Tournament Team, has been on a tear both at the plate and the base path, going 8-for-18 with two stolen bases during the championships. Catcher Daniel Rizzie, infielder Joe Forney, designated hitter Derek Hasenbeck and pitchers Trent Astle and Sean Campbell join Elliott on the BIG EAST All-Tournament Team roster.
The Musketeers last earned a bid in the Houston Region back in 2009 when it took on Kansas State in the first game. XU lost, 16-8, but came back to defeat Sam Houston State, 9-6. The season ended with a 12-5 setback against No. 6 Rice the next day.
May 25, 2014
Astle's Complete Game Shutout Carries Xavier Baseball To BIG EAST Crown
Elliott Named Tournament's Most Outstanding Player
BROOKLYN, N.Y. – Freshman hurler Trent Astle pitched a complete-game, three-hit shutout and senior outfielder Mitch Elliott was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player as Xavier captured the BIG EAST baseball Championship on Sunday afternoon.
Astle (5-4) got the call to stat the championship game and performed masterfully. The first three pitches of the game were out of the strike zone for Astle, but the southpaw calmed his nerves and was nearly unhittable the rest of the way. Only five Bluejays reached base all day on three hits, a walk and one hit batter.
The win not only gives Xavier the league championship in its first season as members of the BIG East, but it also sends the Musketeers to the 2014 College World Series. XU will learn its destination on Monday, May 26, when the field is announced on ESPNU at noon.
Elliott put together a tremendous tournament to earn a spot on the All-Championship Team and the Most Outstanding Player award. He went 8-for-18 (.444) at the dish, with two extra-base hits, four RBIs and three runs scored.
Teammates Sean Campbell, Daniel Rizzie, Joe Forney, Derek Hasenbeck and Astle joined Elliott on the all-tournament team.
Elliott drew a one-out walk in the third to get the Musketeers started. Forney followed with a single to right field that was misplayed by Creighton's Ben Lahn, allowing the speedy Elliott to score from first. Rizzie then delivered a sacrifice fly to plate the second run.
Xavier (29-27) scratched across another run in the fourth to extend its lead to 3-0. Stephen Schoettmer and Elliott each singled, setting up Forney's RBI base knock.
Three-consecutive hits in the fifth resulted in two more runs for the Musketeers and a five-run advantage, 5-0. The streak began with Brian Bruening's single and, following a double by Andre Jernigan, ended with a two-RBI single from Schoettmer.
The five runs on the board were all that Astle and Xavier's defense needed to secure the BIG EAST Championship. The loss dropped Creighton to 32-17-1.
Five Musketeers registered a pair of hits in the game, Elliott, Forney, Rizzie, Jernigan and Schoettmer. Schoettmer led XU with two RBIs.
With the win over Creighton, Xavier officially eliminated all three other teams from the tournament, marking the first time that has happened in the BIG EAST since Villanova accomplished the feat in 1991.
The Musketeers have only reached the College World Series one other time in program history. The 2009 team won the Atlantic 10 Championship and earned a berth into the tournament, where it went 1-2.
BIG EAST All-Tournament Team
Dan Rizzie, XU, C
Reagan Fowler, CU, IF
Robbie Knightes, SJU, IF
Joe Forney, XU, IF
Jake Peter, CU, IF
Mike Gerber, CU, OF
Mitch Elliott, XU, OF
Zach Weigel, SHU, OF
Derek Hasenbeck, XU, DH
Trent Astle, XU, P
Sean Campbell, XU, P
MOP – Mitch Elliott, XU, OF
CINCINNATI - Xavier men’s soccer coach Andy Fleming revealed his 2014 recruiting class, which includes a two-time All-American, two all-conference transfers, four players who have served time with youth national teams and three ranked amongst the nation’s Top 150 prospects.
Announcing their intentions to enroll at Xavier next Fall are Kaleb Bayse (KY), Cory Brown (New Zealand), Josh Grant (OH), Eric McWoods (MO), Matt Nance (MI), Majed Osman (England), Alex Ridsdale (New Zealand), Cameron Taylor (IN), Riley Uhrin (OH) and Matt Vasquenza (CT).
"This class is large and diverse with a little bit of everything," said Fleming. "We have two transfers, three internationals, three left-footed players, 24 career collegiate goals, two guys who stand over 6-3 and by far the fastest class to ever enroll at Xavier. We lost seven seniors and also decided to expand our roster from our usual size of 25 and thus brought in a larger than normal class."
The 2014 class is the fifth nationally rated class assembled by Fleming’s staff (rated 26th by College Soccer News) and narrowly missing their second top 25 class in the past three years.
Fleming has now attracted five U17 national team players, three Gatorade state players of the year and five NSCAA All-Americans to Xavier in his five year tenure.
"I’d like to commend our coaches, players and staff for their efforts in hosting and communicating with these prospects," Fleming said. "After a few months in the BIG EAST we realized we had a new set of demands and had to do quite a bit of recruiting from the end of the season to now. Whereas most programs try and set a class by September 1, I actually liked being able to add to our class over the winter. We kept to our blueprint of what a Xavier player is, yet added a few dimensions with some older internationals and transfers to compliment the strong core of younger domestic players on what will be our youngest team yet. This class has size, speed, some goal scoring threats and a diverse set of skills and experiences. I’d like to welcome each player and their families to our soccer family here at Xavier."
The Musketeers finished the 2013 at 10-7-2, finishing just one point shy of first place in the BIG EAST regular season standings and were one of three final RPI bubble teams left out of this year’s tournament. Over the past four years they are just one of seven schools with multiple Top 25 MLS Superdraft picks (2), and rank amongst the nation’s top fifteen in NCAA appearances (3), consecutive 10 win seasons (4) and wins (46). 2014 graduates Nick Hagglund (Toronto) and Matt Walker (Columbus) signed MLS contracts in January.
Cory Brown - HIGHLIGHTS
5-9 | 165
Nelson, New Zealand/Nayland College
Ole Football Academy
- Starting left back for New Zealand in 2013 FIFA U 17 World Cup
- Played against Italy, Uruguay and the Ivory Coast, averaging 70 minutes per game in World Cup
- One of just three 17 year olds to participate in every New Zealand U20 training camp, played in two internationals for them this May and will represent them in World Cup qualifying in 2014
- Has represented New Zealand four other times.
Personal: Born April 3, 1996 … Son of Paul and Karyn Brown … from same hometown as Xavier teammate Alex Ridsdale … recruited by Louisville, South Florida and Butler … chose Xavier over UC Santa Barbara.
What Fleming Says About Brown: "Corey was recruited by some of the nation’s top programs and was one of the nation’s top defender prospects. In addition to playing three full matches in last year’s FIFA U17 World Cup he is one of the few younger players to travel with New Zealand’s U20 team and is brought in for most of their events. Equally comfortable as a left back and central defender, Cory is very good at connecting the game and is one of the more technically gifted backs I’ve seen in a while. He moves well, is brave and his international experience and living away from home at Ole Academy provide him with some experience that will have him ready. James Prosser, his coach, is a Cincinnati native, which allowed us to connect our school with Cory and his family is a very personal way form the other side of the globe."
5-9 | 155
Hilliard, Ohio/Hilliard Bradley
- Ohio South ODP team
- All-Ohio Team
- Conference and District Champions Senior year
- Recognized to Scholar athlete Honor roll
Personal: Son of Janos and Sheri Uhrin ... father has represented the United States on its Hearing Impaired National Team ... attended Xavier’s One Day ID camp in January 2014 … also recruited by Robert Morris.
What Fleming Says About Uhrin: "Riley attended our One Day ID camp in January which is designed to give players with an interest in Xavier an audition of sorts to our staff. We certainly noticed his versatility, his strong frame and how springy he was. Add in his ability to play multiple positions and a strong left foot, and Rileys skill set is intriguing. Soccer aside it was his enthusiasm for our program and a small chip on his shoulder that he plays with that impresses me the most."
Majed Osman - HIGHLIGHTS
5-11 | 155
London, England/ International School of London/West Virginia University
- All-Mid-American Conference (MAC) first team in 2013
- Second on team with six goals and seven assists.
- Three goals and four assists during freshman campaign
- Recorded goals against Indiana and Akron in 2013
- Represented England FA in National Futsal Finals on two occasions
Personal: Born June 9, 1994 ... son of Sobhi and Linda Osman ... made other visits to North Carolina and Creighton.
What Fleming Says About Osman: "Majed is a dangerous attacking personality who has played as a tucked in winger, a front player and is accustomed underneath role. His six goals and 7 assist and first team All MAC for a solid WVU program prove that he is adept in both a scoring and setup role. He strikes the ball very well form distance, can weight a pass and does well with the final pass when able. His presence will allow Will Walker more freedom to find the game, and help ease the loss of Matt Walker, while lightening the burden on our talented freshmen attacking players. His skill set compliments our system well.
Josh Grant - HIGHLIGHTS
5-10 | 155
Cincinnati United Premier
- Six-time Ohio state cup champion
- 2013 Ohio Division I state high school champion
- 2013 National USYSA U17 Final IV
- Named to Best XI team at 2013 national finals
- MVP of Cincinnati All Star game
Personal: Born December 1, 1995… son of Jeff and Kim Grant … father serves as a minister ... brother competed collegiately at Northern Kentucky ... attended College Soccer 101 camp at Xavier ... also recruited by Radford, Dayton, Cincinnati and Liberty.
What Fleming Says About Grant: "I considered Josh to be the best athlete in Cincinnati this past year. His pace, quickness and leaping ability are at the level are on par with many others in the BIG EAST. Used both as an attacking right back and a flank player, Josh does well to gain the endline and also is better in combination in tight spaces than some give him credit for. Above all, Josh is a delightful young man from a wonderful family which allowed us to once again keep the best players and people at home in Cincinnati. Once he irons out a few details defensively and settles in, the prospect of his speed alongside Vasquenza and Mc Woods is exciting."
Matt Nance - HIGHLIGHTS
5-9 | 150
Washington, Mich./De La Salle
Vardar/ US U 17 National team
- Ranked in nations top 150 recruits by College Soccer News and Top Drawer Soccer. Rated as high as 35th in 2012.
- US U 17 national team full time residency program, Bradenton FL 2011
- Represented US internationally in Spain and France in 2011
- Captain of Region II ODP team
- U 15 national champs 2011
Personal: Born November 4, 1996 … son of Jeff and Diane Nance … attended College Soccer 101 camp at Xavier ... brother Chris was two-time Division III national finalist at Calvin College … also looked at NC State, Kentucky, Michigan and Indiana.
What Fleming Says About Nance: "I met Matt at camp as a freshman in high school and knew then this would be a guy I wanted to coach. In my eyes he is quietly one of the smarter and smoother players in the Midwest and has quite a pedigree and array of soccer experiences from his time with the United States National Team residency program. He is a gifted passer, is left footed, very poised, has great vision and has improved his commitment to the defensive side of the ball. His ability to read the game and pass out of pressure make him very versatile and promise a solid career here at X."
Eric McWoods - Highlights
5-8 | 165
St Louis, Mo./Kirkwood
Lou Fusz Soccer Club
- 2013 NSCAA State Offensive Player of Year for Missouri
- Ranked in nations top 150 recruits by College Soccer News
- 2012 National High School All-American Classic at NCAA Final IV weekend
- 2013 NSCAA All-American
- Region II ODP regional team
- School record for career goals (87)
- All-conference in basketball and all-state sprint finalist in 100 yard dash
Personal: Born October 21, 1995 … son of Ricky and Roberta McWoods ... mother was a heptathlete at Missouri … also recruited by SMU, Duke and New Mexico.
What Fleming Says About McWoods: "Eric is a guy who was a standout point guard and track athlete and only did soccer part time until this spring. Despite his limited exposure, he still drew interest from several top programs and was a two time High School All American. He is one of the most athletic players in the nation who is able to face up players and also run onto balls behind them. He turns the corner well and finishes with both feet as well as his head. Although just 5’9 he can dunk a basketball and will grow leaps this spring as he becomes a fulltime soccer player."
Kaleb Bayse - HIGHLIGHTS
6-3 | 175
United FC Rovers
- Final two players for 2013 Kentucky Gatorade Player of the Year
- Five goals in four playoff games en route to state title and had a goal in club state title game three straight years
- Five-time state champion with Rovers
- Class president junior year and kicked for 12-2 football team his senior year
Personal: Born October 24 1995 … son of Steve and Melodye Bayse ... brother and sister both play collegiate soccer … attended College Soccer 101 camp at Xavier ... also visited Lipscomb and Wright St.
What Fleming Says About Bayse: "Kaleb attended our College Soccer 101 camp last year and emerged as the week grew on. The first thing you notice is his 6’3 frame and his great feet and ability to connect the game as a target player, while he moves very well and can also play in the midfield. His soccer IQ and vision are very impressive and once he refines his ariel game and develops some more physical strength I think hell add a nice dimension to some of the excellent quickness and pace we brought into our attack with our players in this class.
Cameron Taylor - HIGHLIGHTS
6-3 | 175
Indianapolis, Ind./ North Central
Indiana Fire USSDA
- Mentioned in Best XI at 2012-2013 Development Academy playoffs
- Starting defender for three time state champion Carmel United (09-11)
- Team had eleven players got to Division I schools, including 7 to BIG EAST/ Big Ten schools and one turn professional
Personal: Born November 22, 1995 ... son of Randy and Anita Taylor ... club teammate of current Musketeer Jalen Brown ... also visited Loyola of Chicago and IUPUI.
What Fleming Says About Taylor: "Cameron is a physical specimen at 6’4 and a special athlete with a great ariel presence/ leaping ability and tremendous pace when in 1v1 footraces. He rarely complicates his role and has done well shutting down attackers on the ground, in the air and thru his positioning. We are anxious to see if he can fit into some other spots and is a guy who will really develop once he is engrained into the culture of our program. His ceiling is exciting and he gives us another legitimate BIG EAST level athlete in this class."
Matt Vasquenza - HIGHLIGHTS
5-9 | 155
East Hampton, Conn./East Hampton HS
Oakwood Soccer Club USSDA
- Ranked as a Top 150 recruit and #6 prospect in Northeast by topdrawersoccer
- US National Team U18 training camp August 2013
- 15 goals in 25 games for Oakwood 2013, placing him amongst nations leaders
- Named to starting XI for US Soccers Eastern Conference team 2013
- 1,000 point scorer during four-year high school basketball career
Personal: Born January 6, 1996 … son of Michael and Mary Lou Vasquenza … attended CS 101 camp at Xavier … also visited UConn and Providence.
What Fleming Says About Vasquenza: "Matt reminds me of so many others who have gone onto be prolific goal scorers at the college level. He has a blue collar mentality, tremendous pace, times his runs well, has great balance and can finish with both feet in a variety of ways. His efforts got him noticed by the US staff and lead to an invite to a national team camp last summer where he won the beep fitness test. He has worked hard to add dimensions to his game in the middle third and with his back to the goal. He also scored 1000 points in high school basketball despite standing 5’9. Matt finds a way and is a winner."
Alex Ridsdale - HIGHLIGHTS
5-8 | 170
Nelson, New Zealand/ Mount Albert/McKendree University
New Zealand U 17 national team
- Second Team, All Great Lakes Valley Conference selection 2012 and 2013
- Tallied eight goals as freshman and seven as sophomore. 15 goals in 32 career college games
- Member of New Zealand U 17 World Cup qualifying team, representing them twelve times.
- Participated in trials with Scottish Premier League team Hibernian and West Brom of English Premier League.
Personal: Born January 14, 1994 ... son of Michael Ridsdale and Marie Calderbank … comes form same hometown as incoming freshman Cory Brown … also contacted by St John’s.
What Fleming Says About Ridsdale: "Alex is a savvy player comfortable in each of the front four spots. His international experience representing New Zealand and trials with Scottish and English Premier League clubs provide him with a wide range of experiences. This accumulated soccer IQ resulted in two all-conference selections at McKendree as well as 15 goals in two seasons. He is extremely fit, has good vision, balance and is good at getting players off balance via the dribble. I think that our culture will be good for him and his veteran experience will be welcomed in our young attacking core."
May 20, 2014
College Sports Madness Awards Three Musketeers With Postseason Honors
Nittoli, Rizzie Earn CSM First Team All-Conference Accolades
CINCINNATI – College Sports Madness has named Vinny Nittoli and Daniel Rizzie to its BIG EAST All-Conference First Team and Derek Hasenbeck to the second team. All three Musketeers earned the same accolades from the conference earlier this week.
Nittoli, a right-handed pitcher who also sees time in the outfield, ranks among the conference and national leaders in ERA (2.07). He holds a 5-3 record with 59 strikeouts and has issued just 16 walks this year. At the plate, Nittoli is batting .273 with 19 RBIs and 16 runs.
First-team honors were also bestowed to Rizzie, who anchors Xavier's infield from his catcher position. Xavier leads the BIG EAST in stolen-bases against thanks to the sophomore's prowess behind the plate. Opponents have completed just 45-of-68 stolen-base attempts against Rizzie. He leads the Musketeers with 37 runs scored and has a .309 batting average with 32 RBIs.
Hasenbeck has spent most of the season as Xavier's designated hitter, while also spending time at first base and behind the plate. He holds a .305 batting average with 26 RBIs and 33 runs scored. Hasenbeck has also belted a team-high six homeruns.
Xavier's season continues at the BIG EAST Baseball Championship presented by New York Life. The Musketeers face the Creighton Bluejays in the opening round of the tournament in Brooklyn, N.Y., at 4 p.m. on Thursday, May 22.
College Sports Madness 2014 BIG EAST All-Conference Teams
Field Player of the Year – Reagan Fowler, Creighton
Pitcher of the Year – Josh Prevost, Seton Hall
Freshman of the Year – Michael Donadio, St. John's
Coach of the Year – Ed Servais, Creighton
P Matt Warren, Creighton
P Josh Prevost, Seton Hall
P Vinny Nittoli, Xavier
IF Robbie Knightes, St. John's
IF Sal Annunziata, Seton Hall
IF Reagan Fowler, Creighton
IF D.J. Ruhlman, Seton Hall
IF Daniel Rizzie, Xavier
OF Mike Gerber, Creighton
OF Michael Donadio, St. John's
OF Derek Jenkins, Seton Hall
UTIL Nick Collins, Georgetown
P Luke Cahill, Seton Hall
P James Lomangino, St. John's
P Anthony Elia, Seton Hall
IF Kyle Grimm, Seton Hall
IF Derek Hasenbeck, Xavier
IF Jake Peter, Creighton
IF Todd Czinege, Villanova
IF Steve Anderson, Georgetown
OF Connor Jones, Villanova
OF Marcos Calderon, Butler
OF Zach Lauricella, St. John's
UTIL Max Beerman, Villanova
May 19, 2014
Five Musketeers Haul In All-BIG EAST Baseball Honors
Nittoli, Rizzie Tabbed First-Team All-Confrence
CINCINNATI – Xavier’s Vinny Nittoli and Daniel Rizzie highlight five Musketeers on the 2014 All-BIG EAST Conference baseball teams as voted on by the league’s coaches. First-team members Nittoli and Rizzie are joined by second-team honorees Derek Hasenbeck, Brian Bruening and Scott Klever.
Nittoli ranks nationally in four major pitching categories, including 92nd in ERA (2.07), 118th in strikeout-to-walk ratio (3.71), 136th in WHIP (1.09) and 157th in walks allowed per nine innings (1.88). The native of Gibsonia, Pa., was named College Sports Madness BIG EAST Player of the Week after striking out nine batters in seven innings against Toledo. He also has a BIG EAST Player of the Week and three weekly conference honor roll awards to his credit this season. The dual-threat Nittoli is also batting .273 with four long balls, 19 RBIs and 16 runs scored.
Xavier’s starting catcher Rizzie earned the first-team nod after establishing himself as the top catcher in the league this season. The native of Orland Park, Ill., ranks tied-fourth in the BIG EAST and 98th nationally in doubles (15) and tied-eighth in the BIG EAST in hits (60). Rizzie is batting .309 on the season with four homeruns. Behind the plate, opponents have only completed 45-of-68 stolen base attempts against the sophomore.
Hasenbeck is one of two Musketeers to have started every game this season and earned second-team all-conference as a designated hitter. The Poway, Calif., native is tied-second in the BIG EAST in both hits (64) and homers (6), while holding a .305 batting average.
After an injury-shortened 2013 campaign, Bruening returned to the lineup in 2014 to hit .272 with 26 RBIs and 26 runs scored. In conference action, the redshirt junior centerfielder is tied-third with six doubles and tied-fourth with five stolen bases.
Klever steadily improved over each of his four years as a Musketeer, culminating with a second-team all-conference honor this season. The local product from Mason HS (Cincinnati) is 6-5 on the year with a career-best 3.40 ERA. Klever’s 92.2 innings pitched ranks second in the conference behind Seton Hall’s Josh Prevost, the league’s Pitcher of the Year.
The five all-conference honorees will lead Xavier into the 2014 BIG EAST Conference Championship presented by New York Life on Thursday, May 22, when the fourth-seeded Musketeers will take on the No. 1-seed Creighton Bluejays at 4 p.m. MCU Park in Brooklyn, N.Y., will host the four-team double-elimination championship.
All-BIG EAST Conference Awards
Player of the Year – Reagan Fowler, Creighton, So., 1B; D.J. Ruhlman, Seton Hall, Jr., SS
Pitcher of the Year – Josh Prevost, Seton Hall, Sr., RHP
Rookie of the Year – Michael Donadio, St. John’s, Fr., OF
Coach of the Year – Ed Servais, Creighton
First Team &
Daniel Rizzie, Xavier, So., C
Reagan Fowler, Creighton, So., 1B
Jake Peter, Creighton, Jr., 2B
D.J. Ruhlman, Seton Hall, Jr., SS
Kyle Grimm, Seton Hall, Jr., 3B
Nick Collins, Georgetown, So., DH
Mike Gerber, Creighton, Sr., OF #
Michael Donadio, St. John’s, Fr., OF
Derek Jenkins, Seton Hall, So., OF
Matt Warren, Creighton, So., SP
James Lomangino, St. John’s, R-Sr., SP
Josh Prevost, Seton Hall, Sr., SP #
Vinny Nittoli, Xavier, R-Sr., SP
Joe Kuzia, St. John’s, Jr., RP
Nick Collins, Georgetown, So., C
Dillon Hamlin, Seton Hall, Sr., C
Sal Annunziata, Seton Hall, Jr., 1B
Todd Czinege, Villanova, Fr., 2B
Bret Dennis, St. John’s, Jr., SS
Robbie Knightes, St. John’s, Fr., 3B
Derek Hasenbeck, Xavier, Jr., DH
Zach Lauricella, St. John’s, Jr., OF
Alex Caruso, St. John’s, So., OF
Brian Bruening, Xavier, R-Jr., OF
Gunner Johnson, Butler, Sr., SP
Ryan McCormick, St. John’s, So., SP
Luke Cahill, Seton Hall, So., SP
Scott Klever, Xavier, Sr., SP
Bryan Sova, Creighton, Sr., RP
Matt Meurer, Villanova, Sr., RP
& - 16 players because of a tie in the voting
# - unanimous first-team selection
May 17, 2014
Xavier Nabs Four-Seed In BIG EAST Baseball Championship
Musketeers Will Play Top-Seeded Creighton In Opening Game
CINCINNATI – Xavier's season remains alive as it grabs the No. 4 seed in the upcoming BIG EAST Conference Baseball Championship presented by New York Life at MCU Park, home of the Brooklyn Cyclones, in Brooklyn, N.Y. The Musketeers went 26-26 on the season, including their 8-10 mark in league play that led to a fourth-place finish in the conference standings.
Coming off of a three-game series at Hayden Field against Creighton (30-16-1, 14-4 BIG EAST), the two teams will play a fourth-straight contest on Thursday, May 22 at 4 p.m., to open the tournament. The Musketeers dropped the three-game set this weekend against the league-champion Bluejays, 2-1.
St. John's (35-18, 13-5 BIG EAST) and Seton Hall (38-13, 11-7 BIG EAST) earned the two- and three-seeds, respectively, and will square off at 7 p.m. in the other first round game on May 22. The Redstorm and Pirates also played this weekend, with St. John's winning the series, 2-1.
This is the inaugural season in the BIG EAST for the Musketeers, who joined the conference on July 1, 2013.
Tickets are on sale to the general public via the Brooklyn Cyclones official website, brooklyncyclones.com, at the MCU Box Office, or by calling 718-507-TIXX.
Live coverage will be provided for all six games of the championship. The first five contests will be live streamed on BIGEAST.com and the title game on Sunday, May 25 will air on FOX Sports 1.
BIG EAST Championship Schedule
Thursday, May 22
Game 1: #1 Creighton vs. #4 Xavier, 4 p.m.
Game 2: #2 St. John's vs. #3 Seton Hall, 7 p.m.
Friday, May 23
Game 3: Game 1 loser vs. Game 2 loser, 4 p.m.
Game 4: Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 7 p.m.
Saturday, May 24
Game 5: Game 3 loser vs. Game 4 winner, 3 p.m.
Sunday, May 25
Game 6: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner, 1 p.m.
May 17, 214
Extra Effort From Xavier Falls Short In Final Home Game, 7-6.
Hasenbeck Recorded Four Hits, Including A Homer, In The Loss
CINCINNATI – Xavier baseball dropped its final home game of the 2014 season to Creighton Saturday afternoon, 7-6, in a 12-inning affair. With the loss, Xavier finishes the regular season with a record of 26-26 and 8-10 in the BIG EAST Conference, while Creighton (30-16-1, 14-4 BIG EAST) clinched the regular-season championship with the win.
Pitching dominated the game through the first four and a half innings, but the Musketeers finally broke through with two outs in the fifth. Consecutive singles by Patrick Jones and Derek Hasenbeck drove in Daniel Rizzie to give XU a 1-0 advantage.
A leadoff double from Creighton's Cody Kottich was followed by a sacrifice bunt to move him to third and then a sac fly by Ryan Fitzgerald to push him home.
The Musketeers cooked up a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh to stake claim of a 3-1 lead. Rizzie singled with one down and took second on a wild pitch. The hot-hitting Jones delivered an RBI single before scoring on Hasenbeck's double to deep right-center.
Three ninth-inning walks to start the frame haunted the Musketeers. Reagan Fowler plated the game-tying runs on a single through the right side of the infield, and Logan Lucansky pushed across the go ahead run on a bloop single that fell just inside the right field line between three Musketeers giving chase.
Xavier wasn't ready to go down. Forney opened the ninth with a chopping infield single, which was followed by a Rizzie sac bunt to give XU the game-tying run in scoring position. Jones singled up the middle for the third time of the day, putting runners on the corners with one out. A groundout into the hole on the right side by Hasenbeck allowed Forney to score the game-tying run and send the game into extra innings all square at four.
After a scoreless 10th, Creighton worked Sean Campbell to get one run on a McKewon single to left field in the 11th. Xavier quickly answered with one swing of the bat from Hasenbeck, sending a ball deep into left centerfield and tying the game, 5-5.
CU tallied two more runs in the 12th inning due to back-to-back singles from Daniel Woodrow and Nicky Lopez. Facing the two-run deficit, Xavier put together a one-out rally, starting with a double from Mitch Elliott. Forney drove a single into right field and brought home Elliott to cut the deficit to one. XU's push ended there and the Musketeers fell in the final game of the series, 7-6.
Hasenbeck led all XU hitters with four hits, one home run and four runs driven. Bruening, Jones and Forney each recorded three hits.
On senior day, Xavier's fifth-year hurler Vinny Nittoli pitched a gem. In his final day on the mound at Hayden Field, Nittoli allowed one run on two hits and a pair of walks. He fanned seven Bluejays, but did not factor into the decision. Fellow seniors Scott Klever (6-5), who pitched on one day's rest and was charged with the loss, and Markus Kuykendoll made appearances on the mound.
Prior to the start of the game, ten graduating players were honored for their time as Musketeers. Tres Eberhardt, Elliott, Jake Forrester, Klever, Kuykendoll, Michael Moore, Nittoli, Joey Noble, Stephen Schoettmer and Bo Slemons were given engraved bats in the ceremony.
May 17, 2014
TRACK & FIELD
Ohlman Leads Musketeer Track & Field At Cardinal Twilights
Ohlman, Kolibab, Oliver Represented Xavier In Louisville
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Xavier track & field sent three members of its team to the Cardinal Twilights in a last chance effort to qualify or solidify spots in the NCAA First Rounds. Tom Ohlman, John Kolibab and Mercedes Oliver participated in the event.
Ohlman, who entered the weekend ranked 40th in the NCAA East Region in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, earned a fifth-place finish with a time of 9:14.27. The senior distance runner awaits the results of other meets this weekend to see if he qualified for the NCAA First Rounds. The top 48 runners qualify for the event.
Xavier's career record holder in both the indoor and outdoor high jump, Kolibab, cleared a height of 1.94m to finish sixth. Oliver took eighth place in the women's shotput after recording a distance of 13.54m. Kolibab and Oliver's seasons came to an end, as neither athlete improved upon their mark to slide into the NCAA First Round.
Senior captain Clare Fischer has already qualified for the women's 10,000-meter run. She will make the trip to Jacksonville, Fla., for the NCAA First Round, which is scheduled for May 29-31.
May 16, 2014
Musketeers Downed, 7-2, By Bluejays In BIG EAST Action
Jones Belts Homeruns In Consecutive Games For Xavier
CINCINNATI – Creighton scored five runs late in the game to pull away from Xavier in a 7-2 loss for the Musketeers. XU falls to 26-25 on the season and 8-9 in the BIG EAST Conference, while CU improves to 29-16-1 overall and 13-4 in league play.
Creighton's Mike Gerber scored the first run of the game on an RBI groundout by Nicky Lopez in the second inning.
Xavier struck back in the fourth. Brian Bruening doubled down the left-field line and was moved to third on Joe Forney's sac bunt. Daniel Rizzie delivered an RBI sac fly to center field to even the score at one.
Ryan Fitzgerald answered for the Bluejays, singling home Lopez in the fourth. Then Creighton added a three-spot in the seventh on three hits and a pair of Xavier miscues.
Patrick Jones answered in the bottom half of the seventh, sending a solo homerun over the fence in left center. Jones also hit a long ball in XU's 9-4 win over CU on Thursday.
A two-run bomb from Creighton's Landon Lucansky in the eighth pushed Xavier's deficit to five, 7-2.
Jones finished with a pair of hits and one of the Musketeers two RBIs. Rizzie collected the other RBI. Mitch Elliott also finished the game with two hits at the plate.
Eric Stiene earned the start for the Musketeers. He allowed two earned runs on three hits over five full innings. The native of Loveland, Ohio (Moeller) added a pair of strikeouts to his line, but took the loss and fell to 3-3 on the season.
Brad Kirschner entered in relief and was charged with five runs on five hits in three innings. Adam Hall pitched a scoreless ninth for the Musketeers, fanning one batter.
Creighton was led at the plate by Lucansky and Fitzgerald. Lucansky went 1-for-3, but drove in two runs and scored twice. Fitzgerald recorded a pair of hits and two RBIs.
Bryan Sova went the distance for the Bluejays. He surrendered two runs on six hits in the complete-game effort.
May 15, 2014
Three Homeruns Help Put Xavier Over Creighton At Home, 9-4
Double-Digit Hits Power XU's Offense, Dropping Magic Number To One
CINCINNATI – Xavier baseball jumped on Creighton early with three runs in the third and held off the Bluejays at home, 9-4. In a much-needed victory, XU (26-24, 8-8 BIG EAST) dropped its magic number to make the BIG EAST Championships to one, while Creighton (28-16-1, 12-4) already clinched its spot along with Seton Hall and St. John's.
Both teams struggled to hit early in the game, but XU broke through first. In the bottom of the third, Andre Jernigan sent a ball just over the left field wall and gave Xavier an early lead. Joe Forney added two more with a single through the left side to build the advantage to three.
Creighton answered with its own homer from Jake Peter to cut the deficit to two, 3-1.
Stephen Schoettmer joined the home run club in the fifth when he sent a long ball into the left field netting.
A quick rally in the seventh put Xavier in the driver's seat. With two outs, Daniel Rizzie ripped a single into center field, scoring Brian Bruening and Schoettmer. Patrick Jones came up to bat with runners on the corners and drove a ball onto Victory Parkway to give the Musketeers a 9-1 lead.
The Bluejays did not go away quietly. In the top of the ninth, Landon Lucansky found space in left field and drove in Reagan Fowler. Lucansky eventually came around to score with Nicky Lopez on a Brad McKewon single. However, it was not enough to surpass the XU lead and the Musketeers clipped the Bluejays, 9-4.
Every Musketeer starter reached base at least once in Thursday's game. Schoettmer led all XU batters with three hits, his second-straight three-hit game. Jones extended his hot streak by recording three RBIs and going 2-for-4. Forney and Rizzie each had one hit and two RBIs.
Scott Klever (6-4) started for Xavier and pitched another gem at Hayden Field. The senior righty went eight innings, allowing just three hits and one run in his final contest in front of the home crowd. The duo of Daniel Przeniczny and Brad Kirschner closed out the ninth to seal the win.
Taylor Elman (2-5) pitched well in the first two innings, but struggled with control after that. He was tagged with the loss after going 6.2 innings and allowing seven runs.
Fowler and Peter each finished 1-for-3 at the plate with one run scored for Creighton.
May 14, 2014
TRACK & FIELD
Oliver Garners All-BIG EAST Outdoor Track & Field Honors
Sophomore Reached Podium In Two Events
CINCINNATI – Xavier University’s Mercedes Oliver was tabbed All-BIG EAST Outdoor Track & Field after medaling in two events at the BIG EAST Championships last weekend.
Oliver earned a silver medal in the women’s shot put after recording a mark of 14.10m, which fell just five centimeters short of gold. However, her toss broke Xavier’s record in the event. The native of Cleveland added a third-place finish in the women’s discuss, throwing 43.24m.
The Musketeers and Oliver are back in action on Friday, May 16 at the Cardinal Twilight in Louisville, Ky.
May 13, 014
Quick Bats And Strong Arms Lift Xavier Over Bowling Green, 7-0
Rizzie And Schoettmer Record Three-Hit Games
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio – Xavier (25-24) closed out its nonconference schedule and snapped a six-game losing streak by recording an all-around clean victory at Bowling Green (23-24) Tuesday afternoon, 7-0. An XU pitching effort from six different arms held BG to just two hits in the win.
After one scoreless inning from both teams, Xavier grabbed a quick lead in the second inning off a Stephen Schoettmer single, scoring Derek Hasenbeck from second. A sacrifice fly by Michael Moore and an RBI single by Brian Bruening built the XU lead, 3-0.
Xavier had a repeat performance in its half of the third. Jumpstarted by a Daniel Rizzie one-out single, XU plated another three runs on three-straight singles from Hasenbeck, Patrick Jones and Schoettmer to give the Musketeers a six-run lead.
Bowling Green's cold bats and one more run by Xavier in the ninth sealed the game and XU walked away with a road win, 7-0.
Jones had the best eye on the field, finishing 2-for-2 with three walks. Rizzie and Schoettmer recorded three hits and one run scored each. Schoettmer added two RBIs to his afternoon. Hasenbeck tallied two runs for XU on one hit and one walk.
Neither team hesitated to use the bullpen. Both teams combined to use 14 different pitchers, none throwing more than three innings.
Bowling Green could not figure out the Xavier pitching staff. Trent Astle (4-4) started the game for the Musketeers and went three scoreless innings, giving up just two hits, in the win. Daniel Przeniczny, Adam Hall, Brad Kirschner, Sean Campbell and Zach Johnson combined to pitch six more shutout innings, without surrendering a hit.
Bowling Green used a multitude of pitchers to finish out the game. Cody Apthorpe started and threw 2.2 innings before giving up six runs. Seven relievers tossed the rest of the game for the Falcons.
Xavier comes back home to take on Creighton in a three-game BIG EAST series with a conference tournament appearance on the line for the Musketeers. Game one is set for 3:00 p.m., Thursday at Hayden Field.
May 14, 2014
#MyXavierCourt: Xavier Athletics Invites Fans To Design News Cintas Center Court
Fan Contest To Help Determine New Playing Surface That Will Debut In 2014-15
CINCINNATI – Xavier Athletics will debut a new court inside Cintas Center for the 2014-15 season and we want your input on the design!
Using the Provided Template, you are encouraged to display your creativity and showcase what you think the court should look like for the Musketeers. Be sure to include the Cintas Center and BIG EAST logos in your design.
Fans can submit their design by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail to Xavier Athletics Attn: Court Design, 3800 Victory Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 45207. The deadline for submissions is Friday, May 30, 2014.
By entering a submission, you will be entered into a sweepstakes to win two (2) courtside seats for a mutually agreed upon game during the 2014-15 Men’s Basketball season.
Be sure to share your design on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram using the hashtag #MyXavierCourt so we can share your design!
Check back this summer as we unveil the new layout. Maybe you’ll see elements of your design included!
May 13, 2014
Stiene Garners Attention For The 2014 Gregg Olson Award
The Annual Award Honors College Baseball’s “Breakout Player” Of The Year
CINCINNATI – Xavier baseball pitcher Eric Stiene (Loveland, Ohio/Moeller) was named to the 2014 Gregg Olson Award watch list. Stiene joins a list of 80 student-athletes to be nominated for the award.
Stiene had a limited role in the Musketeers’ bullpen last year, pitching in just four appearances and giving up 10 runs over seven innings. He finished the 2013 season with a 7.71 ERA and one save.
The redshirt sophomore is now one of Xavier’s most reliable pitchers. In four starts and 10 relief appearances, Stiene leads XU with a 2.03 ERA and a record of three wins and two losses over 40 innings pitched.
The Gregg Olson award is named after former Auburn pitcher Gregg Olson, who became one of the top collegiate players after breaking out from a year where he struggled on the mound. Olson rebounded and became a two-time All American, MLB Rookie of the Year and All Star.
May 13, 201`4
Xavier Duo Picks Up BIG EAST Men's Golf All-Conference Honors
Kato And Ward Earn All-BIG EAST Selections
BIG EAST Release - http://www.bigeast.com/sports/c-golf/spec-rel/051314aaa.html
CINCINNATI - Senior Yuki Kato (Las Vegas, Nev./Faith Lutheran) and junior Korey Ward (West Chester, Ohio/Lakota West) were two of 12 golfers named to the 2013-14 All-BIG EAST Men's Golf Team, selected by a vote of league head coaches. The All-BIG EAST team was announced by the conference office on Tuesday, May 13.
Joining Kato and Ward on the all-conference squad were Moritz Ackerhans and Jonathan Hewitt of DePaul, Ed McCrossen and Greg Podufal from Georgetown, Brandon Cloete, Patrick Sanchez and C.J. Swift of Marquette, Ryan McCormick and Dylan Crowley from St. John’s and Seton Hall’s Lloyd Jefferson Go. Two of the five unanimous picks, Kato and Ward were joined by McCormick, Jefferson Go and Crowley.
The Red Storm’s McCormick was selected as the BIG EAST Player of the Year, while Jefferson Go of Seton Hall was named league Freshman of the Year. SJU’s Frank Darby was tabbed as BIG EAST Coach of the Year.
Kato finished tied for second place at the recent BIG EAST Men's Golf Championship in Callawassie Island, S.C. After opening with a 5-over 77 in the first round of the tournament, he rebounded and then carded his low round of the event with a 70 (-2) in the second round. The senior wrapped up the tournament with an even-par 72, and finished with a 54-hole total of 219, eight shots out of first place.
A native of Las Vegas, Kato was XU’s second leading scorer in 2013-14. He finished his senior season with a 74.15 scoring average, compiled over 33 rounds in 11 events. He posted six top-25 finishes, including three in the top-10. His best finish came at the 2014 BIG EAST Men's Golf Championship, where he tied for second place, but his second best finish came at the 2013 Badger Invite. Kato shot 219 (70-73-76), en route to a earning a share of eighth place.
Ward took home a share of 16th place at the 2014 BIG EAST Men’s Golf Championship. He opened the event with an 81 (+9) in the first round, followed by a four-over 76 on day two. The junior saved his best for last and carded his best score of the event with an even-par 72 in the final round and registered a 54-hole total of 229.
A native of West Chester, Ohio, Ward was XU’s leading scorer in 2013-14. He finished his junior campaign with a 73.77 scoring average, compiled over 26 rounds in 9 events. He posted five top-20 finishes, including one in the top-10. His best finish came at the Wolverine Intercollegiate, where he tied for sixth place with a three-round score of 212 (71-70-71; -1).
Player of the Year
Ryan McCormick, St. John’s, Sr. ^
Freshman of the Year
Lloyd Jefferson Go, Seton Hall, Fr. ^
Coach of the Year
Frank Darby, St. John’s ^
Moritz Ackerhans, DePaul, Sr.
Jonathan Hewitt, DePaul, Fr.
Ed McCrossen, Georgetown, Sr.
Greg Podufal, Georgetown, Jr.
Brandon Cloete, Marquette, Jr.
Patrick Sanchez, Marquette, So.
C.J. Swift, Marquette, R-So.
Ryan McCormick, St. John’s, Sr. ^
Dylan Crowley, St. John’s, Jr. ^
Lloyd Jefferson Go, Seton Hall, Fr. ^
Yuki Kato, Xavier, Sr. ^
Korey Ward, Xavier, Jr. ^
^ - unanimous selection
May 13, 2014
Xavier_WBB Adds B1G Transfer Maleeka Kynard To Roster
Guard Played Three Seasons At Ohio State
CINCINNATI - Xavier University head women’s basketball coach Brian Neal has announced that Maleeka Kynard (Toledo, Ohio/Start HS/Ohio St.), formerly of Ohio State, will join the Musketeer basketball program for the 2014-15 season.
Kynard, who will graduate in August from OSU with a degree in Criminal Justice, will have one-year of eligibility remaining and will be able to play immediately (2014-15).
“With a young roster, adding a veteran like Maleeka, who has played three years in the Big Ten, will help stabilize us on the court and in the locker room,” Neal said. “She’s a versatile playmaker on offense and on the other end, she’s a pressure defender who will raise our level dramatically.”
Kynard spent three seasons playing for the Buckeyes (2011-14). Last season she helped lead OSU to a 17-18 overall record (5-11 Big Ten). She saw action in 21 games, making one start, and averaged 3.5 points, 1.2 assists, 1.2 rebounds and 1.1 steals in 13.0 minutes per game.
The 5-7 guard, who was the #58 overall prospect and #14 point guard in the class of 2011 by Dan Olson of the Collegiate Girls Basketball Report, played in 74 games, averaging nearly 10 minutes per contest, during her three seasons as a Buckeye.
Rated No. 41 at her position by ESPNHoopGurlz in high school, she averaged 19.0 points, 5.0 assists and 4.0 steals during her senior campaign en route to first-team all-city, league and state selections. A four-year starter at Roy C. Start HS, she helped the Spartans to a state final four in 2011 and runner-up appearance in 2010.
Kynard, is the seventh addition to the 2014 XU recruiting class, which, as of November 2013, was ranked No. 38 in the country by Blue Star Basketball and second in the BIG EAST by Dan Olson of the Collegiate Girls Basketball Report. She joins fellow transfer Raeshaun Gaffney (Fairfield, Ohio/Fairfield HS/Virginia) and incoming freshmen Anniina Äijänen (Tampere, Finland/ Sammon Keskuslukio), Jada Byrd (Lithonia Ga./Redan HS), Imani Partlow (Cincinnati, Ohio/Winton Woods HS), Marquia Turner (North Canton, Ohio/Hoover HS) and Kindell Fincher (Fort Wayne, Ind./Canterbury HS), who all signed National Letters of Intent in November.
Fans can follow Xavier women's basketball on the program's Twitter (@Xavier_WBB) and Instagram (@Xavier_WBB) accounts and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Xavierwbb.