It's Big East Championship Week for three USF sports where we can't name a single player competing, so let's see how they did and make ludicrous snap judgements on the health of USF Athletics and the ability of their coaches based on the results!
Men's Tennis fell 4-2 to Louisville in the Big East Tournament Final. They were ranked #65 entering the weekend, though we don't know how much their upset of #28 Notre Dame might have helped their NCAA case. Maybe our sports info department could give us an idea of how that would work... oh, right. Despite the fact we hosted the Big East Championships, USF still managed to put multiple stamps on this one and mailed it in. Think I'm being picky? This is the gamer from the exact same event when we lost in the final in 2008. Media relations should get better as a program grows, not worse. Rant over.
Congrats to coach Don Barr on a solid 20th season as Bulls head coach good, as the dean of green and gold teachers has nine career NCAA Tournament appearances as well as the 2009 Big East title. His teams are also always amongst the best in terms of GPA and graduation success as well.
Meanwhile on the women's side, the Bulls lost 4-1 to #17 Notre Dame despite reaching the Big East final for the fifth time in seven years. Agustin Moreno's group was #39 entering this weekend, so since the field is 64 teams V5's Official NCAA Tennis Bracketologist (c'est moi) has us IN the dance! GAGA TIME!!
Congrats to the ladies on a great season, and if you're looking for a name of a player to sweat, go with Ecaterina Vasenina. She's ranked 47th nationally as an individual, and she's also from Moldova. Other than that, we got nothing. Which is about what the official match wrap up is worth. Seriously, are they just grabbing kids out of Freshman English prep classes and having them write the gamers?
Thanks to literally dozens of minutes of research on the internet, I found out the tennis selection show is May 1st on NCAA.com at 5pm for the women and 5:30pm for the men. If the women advance, that's four USF NCAA bids so far this year (men's soccer, men's basketball, and women's cross country the others). You can add softball too, which is a lock barring a Chernobyl-like meltdown, and there's still some hope for baseball as well.
Golf, baseball, and video of a 10-year-old girl whooping my ass on the golf course after the jump.
After one day of the Big East Women's Golf Championships, the Bulls are second with a 298 team total that's two shots behind Notre Dame, but 13 shots ahead of Rutgers and everyone else. Looks like a two team race for the rings and hey look an actual good wrap up is here! Kelli Pry led the Bulls with a 73, while Shena Yang and Amy West each posted 74, but collegiate golf is five players for each team, with four scores counting. Hey Anna Hancock (77) and Christina Miller (78)... need some inspiration? Check out this swing from 10-year-old La Tonya pinch hitting for my foursome at the USF Volleyball Golf scramble on Friday.
Yup, that happened. Nothing like getting emasculated by a 10-year-old girl on the golf course. By the way, La Tonya is ranked 3rd in the world... for girls under 13. You're damn right we all got signed golf balls.
Non-BIg East Championship Teams Bullets
* Baseball (26-14, 11-4 Big East) lost two of three to Louisville this weekend, salvaging a 5-1 win yesterday behind eight strong innings from Derrick Stultz (6-1). We'll get an in-depth baseball post later this week, however in simplest terms the team ERA is 3.52 (good!), but the OPS is .707 (ewww). Besides OF James Ramsey (.337/.397/.411), nobody can really hit, but they've got the starting arms in Stultz, Andrew Barbosa, and Joey Lovecchio to compete for a Big East title. They'll probably need to win it to make NCAA's as Louisville was the highest ranked Big East team nationally entering the weekend at #52. They lose to #4 Florida tomorrow night, and are 0-11 vs. the Gators under Lelo Prado /ReverseJinx.
* Softball (40-8, 13-3 Big East) got a #BEATEMDOWN from #11 Louisville on national TV, falling 4-1 and 9-0 in a doubleheader last Wednesday. Bulls are still in great shape for NCAA's, but their regular season conference title hopes took a hit as they're a game behind the Cardinals with just six Big East games remaining and no tiebreaker.
There are some great softball links are out there too, as this ESPN.com story on starting pitcher Sara Nevins doesn't mention she was the nation's leader in ERA before the UL series, and still might be after this weekend as she still stands at a microscopic 1.01 for 2012. And if you're not watching the iTalk Series on GoUSFBulls.com with bench speedster Ilaura Reeves, you're missing one of USF's most entertaining athletes of all time. She's hysterical and here she is with Jennie Finch, testing the Jersey Guidette cred of one of her teammates, and discussing five pound gummy bears. We love Ilaura, and since there's no more Olympic or pro softball, let's hope this web series gets her clearly destined broadcasting career off on the right foot.