For my first official post I have decided to jump back to the fall semester and recap each sports season. I will also do this for the winter and spring sports as well at a later time.
First up for the women, they capped off their season finishing in 26th place in the NCAA Nationals. Brooklyne Ridder paced the women running a 21:24 3 miles pace. This was the second consecutive year that the women made it to the NCAA Nationals and the 14th time in the programs history. This team seems to have a good mix of experience and youth with only Maura Ryan being the only Penn State runner being a senior that competed in the Nationals.
For the men, they also finished their season finishing 30th out of 31 teams at the NCAA Nationals. Kyle Dawson finished first for the men in the race after he finished in 30:44. This marked the 2nd time in 3 years that men made the Nationals. The men’s Cross Country team seems to be a lot more experienced than the women. They will be losing Owen Dawson and Ryan Foster from the 5 members of the team that competed in the Nationals.
I cannot say I know too much about Field Hockey. However, the 2010 season seemed to be very successful as Charlene Morett’s team went 13-5. The team’s 2010 season ended in disappointing fashion as they lost to Syracuse in the 1st round of the NCAA Tournament. The field hockey team will return their 4 leading scorers for the fall season.Football:
I probably do not need to go into much detail for the football recap, as I would guess that everybody who reads this already knows what happened. However, Rob Bolden was successful in becoming the first freshman QB to start the season opener for Joe Paterno. After going 3-3 in his first 6 starts and a quarter and a half against Minnesota he was concussed. This led to Scranton slinger Matt McGloin coming in and changing the attitude of the offense in a positive way. McGloin led Penn State to a win against Michigan and the largest comeback win in Beaver Stadium to capture Joe Paterno’s 400th career win. Unfortunately, he then faltered down the stretch losing 2 out of 3, falling to Ohio State and Michigan State and beating Indiana. In the Outback Bowl game McGloin played terrible tossing 5 INTS and losing the game. Penn State finished the season at a disappointing 7-6.
In Bob Warming’s first season as Penn State he led the Lions to a 14-8-1 record and a loss in the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament to Maryland. The first season under Warming was a success on many levels. First, he had the leading scorer in the NCAA in Corey Hertzog. Second, the team routinely competed against the best teams in the country. This is apparent by losing a close 2-1 game against then #1 ranked Akron. For the upcoming season, Penn State will be forced to replace the offensive ability that Hertzog possessed, as well as, Midfielder Matheus Braga.
I have never paid much attention to the Women’s soccer team during the 3 years I have been a student at Penn State, but I think I will start following a little more closely. The Penn State women won their 13th consecutive Big Ten Title in 2010. Erica Walsh’s team lost to West Virginia also in the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament. Last season seemed to be the worst of the 4-year Walsh era at 11-9-1. However, the team was extremely young only having 2 seniors on the team. They will return 4 of their 5 leading goal scorers including the teams leading scorer from last season Tani Costa. I would exect some good things from this team in the fall.
What else is new? The women’s volleyball team won their 4th consecutive National Championship in 2010. The Nittany Lions were successful in answering the questions of replacing the 2 most successful players in NCAA history, Alisha Glass and my fellow Durham, NC native Megan Hodge. This team was also young and had a bit of a struggle (struggle compared to other recent PSU volleyball teams) during the early part of the year. The team came together toward the end of the year and was successful in winning their 4th straight National Championship. For the upcoming season, Penn State will look to replace Blaire Brown, Arielle Wilson, and hard serving Alyssa D’Errico. Returning for the volleyball team will be the Most Outstanding Player of the Final 4 Deja McClendon, Kristin Carpenter, and the return of Darcy Dorton. This team looks very strong again for the 2011 season.