Eagles Sports Table of Contents Front Cover.................................................................................... 1 Table of Contents........................................................................... 2 Cross Country Teams Receive Academic Honors......................... 3 Spring Sports Season Preview.................................................. 4-10 Swimmers Wrap Up Solid Season............................................... 11 Back Cover................................................................................... 12
Eagles Sports is a product of the Bridgewater Department of Athletics in conjuction with the Eagle Club. This periodical is released three times a year to Eagle Club members free of cost via email and at BridgewaterEagles.com. All photos are property of Bridgewater College. Front Cover Design: Bridgewater Sports Information Photo on Front Cover: BC Baseball Pitcher Joseph Lucas (taken by Tommy Thompson) Magazine Design: Bridgewater Sports Information Back Cover Design: Bridgewater Retirement Community Thank you for your membership in the Eagle Club. 2
Cross Country Teams Receive Academic Honors The Bridgewater College women’s cross country team earned 2011 Academic Cross Country Team status from the USTFCCCA (U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association). A total of 187 institutions representing 38 conferences received the academic recognition. To qualify as a USTFCCCA All-Academic Cross Country Team, the team must have had a cumulative team GPA of 3.10 through the 2011 fall semester. The Eagles carried a team GPA of 3.20. Eastern Mennonite, Lynchburg, Roanoke, Shenandoah, Washington and Lee and Virginia Wesleyan were the other ODAC schools recognized. The Bridgewater College men’s cross country team also earned 2011 Academic Cross Country team status from the USTFCCCA. The Eagles carried a team GPA of 3.20. Eastern Mennonite and Washington and Lee were the other ODAC schools recognized. Freshman Tim Miller was recognized on the Division III Men’s Cross Country All-Academic squad, according to a release by the USTFCCCA. Junior Molly Smith was recognized on the Division III Women’s Cross Country All-Academic squad according to a release by the USTFCCCA. Smith was one of 183 student-athletes representing 96 colleges and universities recognized on the team. To be eligibile, the student-athlete must have a GPA of 3.3 or higher and place in the Top 35 at the NCAA Regional Championship Meet.
The Bridgewater women’s cross country team hoisting the ODAC Championship trophy following the 2011 ODAC Championships.
Spring Sports This was the scene in Lynchburg in 2010 as the Eagles claimed the ODAC scene
Season Preview Championship. Baseball was selected as the preseason favorite. Could this be repeated?
The spring of 2011 was slim by ODAC championship standards, but the Eagles were successful on their respective playing fields last season and hope to carry those successes on to the 2012 spring campaign. Last season saw the Eagles tennis teams host their first-ever conference championship match, while the baseball team came back from an opening game loss to reach the title tilt of the conference tournament. Head coach Donnie Fulk and the Bridgewater softball team also lost its opening game and stormed back to be one game away from the conference title contest. The Eagles track and field team had numerous successes, highlighted both by the on-the-track and off-track performances of Chrissy Rhodes. Could the 2012 spring season see a few more conference championship plaques make their way to Nininger Hall? Read on to learn more about each of the Bridgewater spring sports teams. Baseball There is plenty of reason for optimism as the season gets underway. The Eagles return their top three starting pitchers, the entire starting infield and one of the best outfielders in the ODAC. With plenty of returning talent and a solid freshman class, the Eagles, the regular season winner in the ODAC in 2011, were a solid choice to win the ODAC title in the coaches’ preseason poll released last week. Along with the returning talent there is also plenty of motivation for this year’s team. Despite going 15-3 in the ODAC and 26-18 overall, the Eagles feel like there is still some unfinished business to take care of as they came up just short of winning the conference tournament last season, losing to Randolph-Macon College in the championship round. “Winning an ODAC title is always one of our goals,” head coach Curt Kendall said. “This team has set some lofty goals as far as wins, offensive production and pitching numbers. If this team meets its goals, we are going to have a very good season.” Kendall sees the usual suspects contending with the Eagles for a conference title. “Randolph-Macon is going to be good. They return one of the best players in the nation in Jordan Walton along with other quality players,” Kendall said. “Lynchburg is a team that always competes. They have good players and they always play us tough. Hampden-Sydney is the same way. They put kids on the field who play the game hard. Washington and Lee always seems to run some pretty good arms out to the mound and they have been pretty productive offensively in recent years,” Kendall said. Kendall also expects to see Virginia Wesleyan bounce back after missing the tournament last year. “I’ve been coaching against Nick Boothe at Wesleyan for a long time. They won’t be down for long.” In addition to a solid conference slate, the Eagles will face a strong non-conference schedule as well. The Eagles have two games slated with Christopher Newport, ranked No. 7 in the d3baseball.com preseason poll, and future ODAC member Shenandoah, ranked No. 21 in the preseason rankings. Bridgewater also has a challenging spring break trip planned with games against Mount Union, Thomas More, Aurora and Husson. Thomas More is ranked No. 19 in the preseason poll while Aurora received votes for the Top 25. Husson, like Thomas More and Aurora, was an NCAA tournament team in 2011. “The non-conference schedule will be challenging and it’s that way on purpose,” Kendall said. “It will help prepare us for the conference games and, if we make it to postseason play, we will know the caliber of teams we can expect to face.” Seniors Kevin Chandler and Devon Snow and junior Johnny Senior pitcher Kevin Chandler will be one of the Mason have been selected as team captains for the 2012 basestaples in Bridgewater’s outstanding pitching rotation ball season. in 2012. Chandler was a second-team All-ODAC pick a year ago 6
when he posted a 6-1 record and a 3.60 ERA. Snow, a three-year starter, hit .301 as a junior while Mason earned first-team All-ODAC honors after hitting .300 with five homers and 42 RBIs in 2011. Joseph Lucas, a lefthanded pitcher and second-team All-ODAC pick a year ago is the junior class captain and righthander Robert Gallet is the sophomore class captain. Softball After losing six players to graduation, including nearly the entire infield, Bridgewater College head softball coach Donnie Fulk has a number of positions to fill when the Eagles take to the field on February 25 against Hood College. Fulk will look to replace the corners of the infield, along with All-Region and 2010 All-American second baseman Emily Morris at second base. Bridgewater’s outfield also took a hit, but the Eagles return a number of players with game experience from the team’s run to the ODAC Championship game a season ago. In Bridgewater’s always talented middle infield, the Eagles return one-half of their one-two punch from 2011 as senior Hillary Rees returns to shortstop for her final season. Rees was outstanding in 2011, hitting at a .410 clip to pace the Eagles offense, en route to earning NFCA all-region honors. The Mt. Crawford, Va. native led the Eagles in RBI with 33 and triples with a pair. Bridgewater’s outfield in 2012 will have a few familiar faces, but plenty of players who have seen significant action in a reserve role. In right field, junior Aven Thomas has been a staple at the position since her freshman year. A season ago, Thomas hit at a .285 average. Thomas and Jenkins both spent time at the position, switching roles between right field and starting pitcher. Junior Sarah Goodman and Jenkins may also see time at the position when Thomas is in the circle. Fulk will look to his pitchers for their veteran leadership during the 2012 season as the entire unit returns after posting a combined 2.10 ERA last season. Jenkins and Thomas will split the primary starting role for the Eagles in 2012 after both hurlers had strong seasons in 2011. Jenkins posted a team-high 13 wins and struck out 93 batters as she helped the Eagles to another 30-win season. Thomas also got to Aven Thomas and the rest of the softball team double digits in the wins column, racking up 11 wins while posting open up the 2012 season on February 25 at home a 2.28 ERA. against Hood. Along with Jenkins and Thomas, senior Summer Ramsey will also see a significant role in the circle. The Fishersville, Va. native has stepped up in some key games for the Eagles during her three years with the program and earned three wins a year ago. Bridgewater opens the 2012 campaign on February 25 against Hood before traveling to Florida on March 5 for the Rebel Spring Games. The Eagles open the ODAC slate on March 22 at JMU’s Veteran’s Field when they meet up with the 2010 ODAC Champion Royals of Eastern Mennonite. Golf With the 2012 spring part of the golf season starting shortly, the Bridgewater Eagles golf team will have to find a replacement for four-time All-ODAC selection Mike Redwood if they hope to earn their second conference title in three seasons. Last season, Redwood earned an individual selection to the Division III National Championships in Greensboro, N.C. Without the services of one of the best golfers in program history, the Eagles will need to find a quick solution if they hope to dethrone the defending champions, Guilford. Senior Travis Gahman and John Phillips provide quality depth for the Eagles scoring quartet. Gahman has been a consistent golfer during his time with the program, helping lead the Eagles to the ODAC title during his first season with the team in 2010. 7
Phillips is one of Bridgewater’s best golfers in a number of categories and could also be looked upon to pick up some key strokes in the spring season. Junior Tod Foshee also brings a quality game to the fold for the group after turning in a strong fall campaign. Freshman Scott Wakely also showed signs of greatness in the fall, turning in the top score for the Eagles en route to his victory at the Virginia Intercollegiate in October. Bridgewater opens the 2012 portion of the schedule on February 27 at the Pine Needles Invitational in Pinehurst, N.C. Track and Field The Bridgewater College men’s track team enters the 2012 season with a strong group of returning athletes. In the sprints, Cliff Woodard and Orlando Bryant should challenge the top sprinters in the conference. Woodard was second and Bryant fourth in the 100 meters at the 2011 ODAC meet. Bryant also placed fifth in the 200. Senior Julius Delbridge could also be a factor in both the 200 and 400 meters. Delbridge, Bryant, Woodard and Daryus Beale all return Senior Travis Gahman and the Eagles golfers look to get from last year’s 4x100 ODAC championship relay team. back to the top of the conference in 2012. In the 800, Tim Wisniewski and Paul Johnson should rank among the conference’s best. Ryan Speray and Abe Rittenhouse are back to challenge in the mile, while Troy Jackson and freshman Luke Sohl should finish near the top of the 5,000 meters. The Eagles could also fare well in the hurdles where Beale and Ben Martindell both return for the 110 meter event. In the 400 meter hurdles, Jevone Fentress is back after scoring in the event at the 2011 ODAC meet. In the field events, the Eagles will be strongest in the jumps. Eugene Cummings placed third in the long jump and fourth in the triple jump a year ago at the conference meet. Leigh Bradley, one of the top triple jumpers in the conference, also returns after missing the 2011 outdoor season. Bradley could also place well in the long and high jumps. Sophomore Willie Logan is BC’s best bet in the throws after placing seventh in the javelin last year. The Bridgewater women look to be strongest in the distance events, throws and jumps. If healthy, junior Olivia Mills is the heavy favorite in both the 1,500 and 5,000 meters. Whitney Fitzgerald and Morgan Keplinger could be a factor in the 1,500. Keplinger could also be a threat in the 800 meters. Also, newcomer Zany Ludtke could figure into the mix in the distance events. In the jumps, Melanie Waters and Kai-Lynn Stoker both return in the long and triple jumps. Waters finished second a year ago in the triple jump. Newcomer Jordan Pitchford could score in several events for the Eagles. Pitchford will run in the 200 and 400 while also participating in all three jumps. Senior Katie Cummings will carry the Eagles’ hopes in the throws as she placed in all three events at last year’s ODAC meet. She was fifth in both the shot and hammer and second in the discus. In the javelin, senior Jessie Owens scored at last year’s ODAC meet. Lacrosse The Bridgewater College women’s lacrosse team begins chapter two of the Kim Lowry era in 2012 as a youthful stock of Eagles take to the field looking to improve upon last season’s wins total. Last year, the Eagles notched six wins, including three conference victories. Of the team’s 10 losses, three came by three goals or less, including a one-goal loss to Virginia Wesleyan and an overtime loss to Ferrum. Bridgewater returns all-conference selection Taylor Chamberlain to the mix in 2012, to go along with seniors Megan Bach, Simone Conyers and Jenny Logan. Chamberlain led the Eagles in scoring last season with 44 goals and 10 assists. Her 44 goals placed the Finksburg, Md. native in a tie for 12th in the conference in goals scored. 8
Lowry also welcomes 10 newcomers to the program, including a batch of seven freshmen. The Eagles also return more than half of their scoring from a rebuilding year last season. On March 3, the Eagles will open regular season play with a trip to Frostburg State. Bridgewater opens the season on a five-game road trip, including a matchup on March 8 in Myrtle Beach, S.C. with SUNY-IT. The season-opening road trip ends with the conference opener on March 13 at Randolph before the Eagles finally come back to the Jopson Lacrosse Complex to open the home slate on March 17 against the Quakers of Guilford College. Women’s Tennis Under new leadership this season, the Bridgewater Eagles women’s tennis team will look to build on a successful 2011 spring season with young but experienced players when it takes to the court on Feb. 18 at Washington and Lee. Bridgewater returns a trio of freshmen who each earned AllODAC honors a season ago after propelling the Eagles to a 15-4 overall record and a berth in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) semifinals. Top flight singles player Katie Gordon returns to the mix for the Eagles after posting a 12-7 record last spring from the No. 1 post in singles play. Gordon was a second-team All-ODAC selection in Senior Megan Bach returns to help lead the singles action, finishing the season with a combined mark of 13-9. Bridgewater Eagles women’s lacrosse team in Sophomore Katy Bergey also returns to the mix after notching 2012. a 14-4 dual meet record last season. Bergey, a Harrisonburg, Va. product, was the second team All-ODAC choice from her No. 2 position on the ladder where she went 7-3 last season in conference affairs. Joining Gordon and Bergey in the sophomore class is Brittany Wilson who turned in an outstanding rookie season in 2011, leading the Eagles with 18 wins on the year. Wilson turned in a school record 13-match winning streak in the middle of the season while her 18 wins on the year also set a new school standard. The Lynchburg, Va. native went a perfect 7-0 on the season at the number four spot, and was 4-1 at number five where she earned second team All-Conference honors. Aside from head coach Marty Perry’s returning all-conference performers, the first-year head coach returns a talented pair of seniors in Emily Schweitzer and Ally McConaughy. The senior duo saw limited singles action a season ago and turned in a 10-11 record in doubles matches. In 2010, the tandem teamed up to set a school record in doubles wins with 17 victories. Senior Brittany Floyd also joins the squad this season as a senior newcomer. Junior Olivia Stone and Rita Murphy also return after both players saw time on the courts last season. Murphy saw action in just one match on the year, posting a loss, while Stone saw significant time at No. 6 singles, posting an 8-2 record. One freshman joins the fray in 2012. Brookside, N.J. product Marla O’Bryan comes to Bridgewater after a solid career at West Morris Mendham High School. O’Bryan helped lead Mendham to the Morris County Championship, winning her flight. Sophomore Katie Gordon returns after earning all-conference honors in 2011.
Men’s Tennis With the team’s highest roster number in some time consisting of six freshman, Bridgewater College head coach Marty Perry will be looking to some veteran players and talented newcomers to propel the men’s tennis team to new heights in 2012. Perry enters his first season with the program and has as much time in the Crimson and Gold as more than half of his team and returns just one senior to the team of 11. Last season, Bridgewater finished with a 14-7 overall record, but lost 48 of its combined 79 singles victories from a season ago due to graduation. Bridgewater also earned the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Sportsmanship Award. Bridgewater returns just one lone senior to the fold in Waynesboro, Va. native Brent Floyd. Last season, Floyd rolled up a 14-5 record in dual match action, including a 9-2 mark at the number four singles post. Floyd also notched 14 combined doubles victories during the 2011 season. In the junior class, Bridgewater returns a pair of players, including 2011 second team All-ODAC selection Peter Hawkins. Hawkins was outstanding for the Eagles during his second year with the program. The Silver Spring, Md. native went 14-7 on the year for the Eagles and ended the season on a seven-match winning streak. Along with Hawkins, Drew Hubble returns to the fray after seeing limited action a season ago. Bridgewater’s sophomore class is chocked full of transfers as a pair of newcomers join the mix after spending their first collegiate season elsewhere. Sophomore Sam Churchill comes to Bridgewater after spending his first season at conference-rival Randolph, while Tim Goetz comes to BC after starting his career at region-foe Methodist. Bridgewater’s three freshmen from Virginia are all Northern Virginia products as Mike Cable, Robert Haskiell and Brandon Larsen join the mix. Cable comes to Bridgewater after helping Robinson Secondary School to a state championship a season ago, while Haskiell enters the mix after being the team MVP at James Wood High School in Winchester, Va. Larsen competed at Woodbridge High School in suburban Washington DC. North Carolina product Robert Belton comes to Bridgewater after a highly successful senior season at Mt. Airy High School. Belton was the state runner-up in doubles action en route to earning allstate honors. Christian Lynn joins the mix after earning a trip to the state championship meet on three occasions in his native Illinois. The St. Charles, Ill. native competed at Elgin Academy. Junior Peter Hawkins returns to the fray for the Eagles after Finally, Georgia product Evan Stack joins the an outstanding sophomore season. mix after an outstanding career at North Cobb High School. Stack was ranked in the top 40 in the state of Georgia’s VSTA rankings and competed for a North Cobb squad that reached the “Five-A” state championships on two occasions. The Eagles open the 2012 spring season on February 26 when the team travels to Christopher Newport. Action from Newport News is set for a 1 p.m. start.
Swimmers Wrap Up Solid Season Another extremely successful season is in the books for the Bridgewater College swim team as the Eagles wrapped up competition on Sunday, February 12 at the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Championships at the Greensboro Aquatic Center. Bridgewater notched a fourth-place finish at the conference championship meet, but continued to close ground on the top three in the league. Freshman Shannon Myers was the leader for the Eagles at the ODAC Championships, notching three topfive finishes on the weekend. In all, the Eagles tallied 329 total team points to finish less than 50 points behind third-place Sweet Briar. The point total for the Eagles is the highest in the four-year history of the team. Senior Simone Conyers wrapped up the successful showing at the conference meet by earning an individual honor. Conyers picked up the Bonnie Kestner Sportsmanship Award. During the season, the Eagles snapped numerous school records and effectively re-wrote the record book for the second straight season. Myers and fellow freshman Annalee Gallagher were outstanding in the sprint events, while sophomore Michelle Caron and junior Danielle Dillon controlled the distance events. Junior Jeni Zeiler was also exceptional for the Eagles during the course of the year as she improved on nearly all of her breaststroke records. Along the way, Bridgewater earned a key dual meet victory with the team’s impressive 148-101 victory over Sweet Briar. Bridgewater set 10 new school records on the evening, while winning all but two events. Over the course of the season, the Eagles owned a seven-match winning streak before being topped by the conference champion Generals of Washington and Lee. Bridgewater wrapped up the dual meet season with an 8-1 overall record after upending ODAC newcomer Notre Dame of Maryland University in the regular season finale. Bridgewater graduates two swimmer from this year’s squad in Conyers and fellow senior Maggy Sullivan. Everyone else from the Eagles’ fourth-place showing is slated to return next season.
Another successful season is in the books for head coach Fran Smith and the Eagles swim team.