Muhlenberg College

Allentown, Pa.
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Thursday, May 31, 2007
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YEAR IN REVIEW: TOP 10

The 2006-07 athletic year at Muhlenberg College began with a volleyball match at Moravian on the first day of September and ended last Saturday at the NCAA Division III Track and Field Championships. With just three short months until the start of the 2007-08 year, it’s time to take a look back.

Below are the top 10 Mule moments of 2006-07, as ranked by the sports information office. Do you agree or disagree with the selections and/or the order? Let us know by e-mailing to the address below. Selected comments will be published in the upcoming weeks, so let the debate begin!

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1. UP TO PAR
Centennial
Conference champions! Women’s golf won Muhlenberg’s lone Centennial Conference championship of 2006-07, outshooting five-time defending champ McDaniel by 30 strokes to win its first title since 2001. Freshman Kimberly Snyder earned medalist honors by shooting a 162, 12 strokes ahead of two other competitors, and ended the year with an average of 81.7, breaking the previous school record by more than 12 strokes. Junior Dana Lynn Bielecki finished fourth at the CC tournament for the second year in a row, and senior Kristen Amore tied for eighth.

2. FANTASTIC FOUR
wrestling champs Of the 96 schools that sponsor wrestling at the Division III level, only five produced four conference champions who qualified for the NCAA Championships. One was Muhlenberg. Sophomores Billy Hall (133) and Rob Kein (141), senior Matt Loesch (197) and junior Joe Tartar (HWT) all represented the Mules at the national meet in Iowa, with Loesch finishing sixth to earn All-America honors for the third year in a row. Loesch ended his career undefeated against CC foes and a four-time CC champ.

3. COOL RUNNING
cross country at NCAAs The men’s cross country team earned its first berth to the NCAA Championships in 2006. With their top eight consisting of five seniors and three sophomores, the Mules had the perfect blend of experience and youth. They tied program bests by finishing second at the CC Championships and fourth at the Mideast Regional and were rewarded with one of 16 at-large berths to the NCAA Championships. Entering the national meet ranked 33rd in the Division III coaches poll, the Mules finished 29th, ahead of three other invited teams.

4. LEADERS IN THEIR FIELDS
A member of the Muhlenberg women’s track and field team was named outstanding performer for field events at the Centennial Conference Championships both indoors and outdoors. The indoor honoree was freshman Alex Faust, who won the pole vault and broke four school records in her rookie campaign. Outdoors, senior Sarah Mitchell was recognized after winning the javelin for the fourth straight year. Mitchell automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships, where she finished 11th.

5. NOT DEAD YET
The men’s basketball team was a game-and-a-half out of last place and had lost eight straight when it hosted Franklin & Marshall on Feb. 3. Down 18 points two minutes into the second half, the Mules came back not only to win that game, but also the next four to qualify for the CC playoffs. It was the first time in College athletic history that a team followed an eight-game losing streak with a five-game winning streak.

6. A STARTLING START
The women’s basketball team graduated seven seniors from its 2006 CC-championship squad, but looked like a veteran group as it won its first 11 games to climb to No. 19 in the national rankings. Included in that stretch was the Scotty Wood Tournament championship and the 100th career win for coach Ron Rohn. The Mules eventually cooled off and finished 19-7, with senior Meghan Courtney earning CC player-of-the-year and All-America honors.

7. NO REGARD FOR HISTORY
The first-round of the CC field hockey playoffs matched five-time conference champion Gettysburg against a Muhlenberg squad that had not won a postseason game since 1992. The new kids on the postseason block knocked off the old veterans, 1-0, on a goal by senior Jessica Hand with 18:17 left in the game.

8. MERCY!
Down 2-0 with 15 minutes to play in the first game of the season, the women’s soccer team scored three goals in a span of 7:49 to stun Gwynedd-Mercy, 3-2. Senior Mallory DiMaio, playing her first game with the Mules, scored the go-ahead goal with 6:36 left. The comeback victory set the tone for a season in which the Mules went 13-6 – a nine-win improvement from 2005.

9. FOOL ME TWICE, SHAME ON ME
The Muhlenberg football team ran two fake punts against William Paterson, and they both went for 51 yards. The second, on a pass from senior Ryan Sassaman to junior Matt Johnson with 9:12 left in the fourth quarter, resulted in the game-winning touchdown.

10. FLAIR FOR THE DRAMATIC
Sophomore Billy Dalton scored with five seconds left in regulation to give the men’s soccer team a 1-0 win against defending CC regular-season champion McDaniel. In the first round of the CC playoffs, the Mules tied the game, 1-1, on a goal by sophomore Brendan Carroll with 20 seconds left in regulation, but Gettysburg went on to win in penalty kicks.


Questions or comments? Send mail to falk@muhlenberg.edu
Last updated May 31, 2007