Year in Review
The Muleys, Part 2
Tomorrow’s Mule Sports Daily will unveil the major Muley Award winners for 2008-09, including Athlete of the Year, Rookie of the Year and Team of the Year. Below is more of the best of
2008-09 in Muhlenberg Athletics.
Best Streak Extended (Team)
Best Streak Broken (Team)
Men’s soccer finished with a non-losing record (12-6-1) for the 23rd consecutive season. That is one of the longest active streaks in Division III.
Women’s soccer beat Scranton for the first time ever, and women’s basketball handed Bowdoin its first-ever homecourt postseason loss, but the
Muley goes to men’s basketball for its 64-57 win against Johns Hopkins.
Muhlenberg had not defeated the Blue Jays at Memorial Hall since the 1987 Scotty Wood Tournament, a span of 21 years and 13 games for a team that plays very well at home against almost everyone else.
Best Streak (Female Athlete)
Sara Hiller of the lacrosse team ended her career by scoring a goal in a school-record 47 consecutive games. The streak is the
second-longest in Centennial Conference history.
Best Streak (Male Athlete)
A tie between cross country runner Timothy VanSyckle
and wrestler Matt Horn.
VanSyckle finished in the top 10 in all six of his races leading up to the NCAA Championships.
He matched the best finish by a Mule men’s runner at the Centennial Conference Championships (third) and posted the best finish by a men’s runner at the NCAA Mideast Regional (seventh).
Horn won 22 straight bouts at 184 pounds on his run to the NCAA Championships. His streak encompassed three tournaments, including the CC Championships.
Most Patient Athlete
After three years as the backup to an All-American, Joseph Gogel finally got to start at goalie for the men’s soccer team.
He made the most of his opportunity, earning spots on the All-Centennial Conference first team and All-Mid-Atlantic Region third team. Special mention
to Joe Caporoso of the football team, who did not catch a touchdown pass until the fourth game of his senior year, then caught one in three straight games.
Best Finish (Women’s Team)
Basketball at Ursinus. The Mules needed a win to complete an undefeated Centennial Conference season but trailed by 12 points midway through the second half.
Still down by five with less than a minute to play, Muhlenberg ended on an 8-0 run, the final points coming on a three-pointer by Alexandra Chili with 1.2 seconds left,
to win 68-65. (video)
Best Finish (Men’s Team)
Baseball vs. St. John Fisher.
Muhlenberg looked like it had no chance to win when it allowed five unearned runs in the top of the ninth, allowing the Cardinals to extend their lead from 4-3 to 9-3.
It still didn’t seem promising when the Mules had two outs in the bottom of the ninth with one run in and two runners on base. Two singles and a bases-clearing double
made it 9-8, and after a walk, Eric Hammond delivered a two-run triple to cap the seven-run inning and give the Mules a 10-9 win.
Best Finish (Male Senior Athlete)
A tie between Andrew Lolley and Nick Fletcher in lacrosse and Stuart Udis
in track and field. Fletcher fed Lolley for the game-winning goal with 8.9 seconds left in overtime as the duo ended their careers with an
8-7 victory against Ursinus in front of the home crowd. In his last career race, Udis battled injury to
run a sensational third leg and help the 4x800 team win a gold medal at the Centennial Conference Championships.
Best Finish (Female Senior Athlete)
Tennis player Carly Rotfeld won her last 11 singles matches, including a 6-0, 6-0 shutout in her final match.
Rotfeld took all 11 matches in straight sets, none closer than 6-3. She won three of the matches 6-0, 6-0, and three others 6-1, 6-1.
Best Finish (Coach)
Retiring coaches Dave Madeira and Tom Schleicher went out on high notes.
Madeira led the men’s basketball team to 16 wins, its most in seven years, and the Centennial Conference semifinals. Schleicher sent two wrestlers to the NCAA Division III Championships, and one (Rob Kein) finished eighth to earn All-America honors.
Best Tandem (Female)
Danielle Winston and Lindsay Schmidt combined to go 17-2 at No. 3 doubles for the women’s tennis team. They won the doubles title at the F&M Fall Invitational and the ITA Southeast Regional (blue draw).
Best Tandem (Male)
“Cresta from Santagato” were three words Muhlenberg football opponents didn’t want to hear. Wide receiver
Phil Cresta tied a Centennial Conference record by catching a touchdown pass in seven consecutive games,
all thrown by Eric Santagato and all of 30 yards or longer. Cresta finished the year with a CC-leading nine touchdowns, all but one from Santagato.
Best Individual Performance (Female)
RiRi Ferrigno went 4-for-4 with two doubles, two home runs and six RBI in the opening game of a softball doubleheader against Franklin & Marshall.
She set school records for extra-base hits and total bases (12) in a game while
tying the mark for RBI in a game and leading the Mules to an 11-3 win.
Best Individual Performance (Male)
Most Be-Deviling Performances|
Female: Alyssa Bruckner pitched a no-hitter against Dickinson in the second game of a softball doubleheader.
Bruckner walked one, struck out five, and allowed only one ball to be hit out of the infield in the
Mules’ first no-hitter in since 1990.
Male: Mike Horowitz made 24 saves, allowing the men’s lacrosse team to
defeat Dickinson 10-8 despite a 52-32 disadvantage in shots.
The two dozen saves were the most by a Muhlenberg goalie since the sport was reinstated in 2003 and the most by a CC goalie since 2005.
Bill Snow shot a 2-under-par 70 to earn medalist honors at the
Gettysburg Fall Invitational. It was the first round of 70 by a Muhlenberg golfer since 2001 and the second career tournament win for Snow, whose previous low round was a 73.
Best Performance by a Group of Individuals
distance medley relay team in men’s indoor track and field broke one of the most impressive school records at the
ECAC Championships, bettering Division III’s top time of 2003. The foursome then went on to
finish fourth at the NCAA Championships, earning All-America honors.
Best Individual Performance in a Loss (Female)
Alexandra Chili scored 33 points, the most by a Mule women’s basketball player since 1992 and a school record for freshmen,
in a 98-87 loss to Moravian. Her nine three-pointers (including seven in the final 6:13) tied a school and
Centennial Conference record.
Best Individual Performance in a Loss (Male)
Matt Rathbun made a career-high 15 tackles, including four for loss and a sack, in the football team’s
27-24 overtime loss at Moravian. His sack came on third-and-3, setting up a blocked punt returned for a touchdown on the next play..