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Men’s basketball earns fourth seed

Originally published March, 2008

Original link: Men’s basketball earns fourth seed

The men’s basketball team secured the fourth seed in the upcoming America East tournament on Sunday with an 89-58 rout of the Maine Black Bears.

With the win, the Cats will take on the fifth ranked Binghamton Bearcats this Saturday at the America East tournament in Vestal, N.Y. Tip-off for the game is set for 2:30 p.m.

The victory also allowed the team’s three seniors, Kyle Cieplicki, Chad Powlovich and Timothy McCrory to go out on top in what was likely their final game at Patrick Gymnasium.

The three seniors are the last players remaining on the team from the “Tom Brennan” era, which was highlighted by the Cats’ 2005 upset of Syracuse in the NCAA tournament.

“I am really happy for our seniors that they went out playing their best,” head coach Mike Lonergan said. “We now have a week to prepare and get healthy, and hopefully carry over some of our excellent play from today into the conference tournament.”

The Catamounts, led by junior Mike Trimboli’s 24 points, started off hot by opening up a 19-6 lead just 7:15 into the game.

Shooting over 50 percent from beyond the arc (10-19) certainly helped their cause, as the Cats led by scores of 49-30 and 61-33 on the way to their 31-point triumph.

Sophomore Marqus Blakely added his 15th double-double of the year, chipping in 13 points and 12 rebounds. The Catamounts’ bench also made a big impact in the effort, outscoring the Maine bench 31-13.

Freshman Sean McNally of Maine led the Black Bears with 16 points.

The UVM win was a far cry from Thursday’s 68-65 loss against the struggling University of New Hampshire Wildcats.

The Cats blew a sevenpoint lead with ten minutes to go when the Wildcats went on a 14-1 run in just over four minutes.

UVM responded in the waning moments when Colin Macintosh’s three-pointer cut the UNH lead to two. However, with 2.2 seconds left the Cats could not get a shot-attempt off. The loss eliminated UVM from any hope of gaining the coveted second-seed in the tournament.

However, after regaining their momentum against Maine, UVM will hope their late-season surge will carry over into the match-up against Binghamton. UVM swept the season series against Binghamton.

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US Open hits Stratton: Snowboarding’s best fly over Southern Vermont

Originally published March, 2008

Original Link: US Open hits Stratton

Snowboarding’s elite riders took over Stratton Mountain Resort last week for the Burton US Open.

The event, the last stop in the Burton Global Open Series, began on March 17 with preliminary qualifiers and concluded with the men’s Halfpipe competition on Sunday.

Final events took place over the weeked. On Saturday, with temperatures approaching 40 degrees and not a cloud in the sky, fans labored up the hill to line the edge of the halfpipe.

With a go big or go home attitude, the competition was fierce, with amazing runs from riders like Kevin Pierce who was hot on the heels of first place winner Shaun White.

White was the big winner of the weekend, taking first in both the halfpipe and slopestyle competitions, adding to his extensive trophy case.

On the women’s side, Tora Bright of Australia took first place in the women’s Halpipe finals for the second year in a row. Kelly Clark gave Bright a run for her money and finished a close second.

In the SlopeStyle competition, Kjersti Oestgaard Buaas of Norway earned first-place honors, with Jamie Anderson finishing second.

While White was able to take home both big-money prizes over the weekend, it was not enough for him to overtake Finland’s Peetu Piiroinen in the overall standings.

Bright’s win was enough for her to capture the overall women’s crown.

The US Open, the mother of all snowboarding competions, is now in its 26th year of existence, making it the longestrunning snowboard competition in the world.

Each winner took home a cool $100,000, making the Open the largest prize payout in snowboarding.

UVM cycling club’s triumph earns respect

Originally published April, 2008

Original link: UVM cycling club’s triumph earns respect

After their overall victory at the Boston Beanpot Classic three weekends ago, the UVM cycling club is once again on track to become a nationally ranked team, junior club member Jeffrey Caisse said.

“[The cycling club] had been nationally ranked in previous years,” Caisse said. “The team is progressing a lot and gaining more talented riders.” The club’s success culminated at the Boston Beanpot Classic, where – according to the Eastern Collegiate Cycling Conference Web site – UVM placed first, beating the likes of Boston University, Tufts and a number of other Northeastern cycling teams.

“The Boston Beanpot was a really big race,” Caisse said. Caisse, who has been a member of the club since he was a freshman, said he has seen the team’s success building up a lot over the last few years, in part thanks to the hard work of members who have since graduated.

“[The cycling club’s] success was set up by previous riders that graduated in 2006,” Caisse said.

“Now, we have a lot of riders doing really well and working together to help each other out.”

Caisse said most of the races are team races, making it necessary for riders to work together and in some cases to sacrifice their personal results in for that of the team’s.

The team-first strategy has been paying off. Caisse said the team has placed in the top five in their conference at the two previous meets before their victory in Boston.

The club wrapped up the season at the conference championship in Dartmouth this weekend.

“Coaches’ Corner” radio show to debut at Brennan’s

Originally published Sept., 2008

Original Link: “Coaches’ Corner” radio show to debut at Brennan’s

Beginning on Oct. 6, Catamount sports fans will have a chance to get closer to their favorite UVM coaches and athletes than ever before with the debut of the new radio show “Coaches’ Corner” at Brennan’s Pub.

The show, which will be hosted by new UVM hockey play-by-play announcer Chris Wojcik, will feature interviews with men’s hockey coach Kevin Sneddon and women’s basketball coach Sharon Dawley.

“Coaches’ Corner” will be taped on most Mondays from 6-7 p.m. throughout the first semester, and will air on WVMT-AM 620 on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 9:30 a.m.

“We are extremely excited to launch our new ‘Coaches’ Corner’ radio show at Brennan’s Pub,” Sneddon said.

Each week, Brennan’s Pub will feature food specials during the taping of the show along with trivia.

Also, for the first show, WVMT will be raffling off a ski package courtesy of the Ski Rack and UVM athletics will have a number of raffles as well as ticket and apparel giveaways.

Featured at Monday’s show will be former NHL player and 1993 UVM graduate Aaron Miller, who will be joining WVMT this year as an analyst. Miller will be signing autographs and some of his autographed merchandise will be raffled off during the first “Coaches’ Corner” taping.

“Coaches’ Corner” will give students in attendance a chance to ask the coaches questions, giving UVM sports fans more accessibility to their favorite teams.