Georgey Buzz - Fall 2012
A look at GW Athletics moments from the fall semester that are creating buzz for the second annual Georgey Awards.
Dec. 19, 2012
There were plenty of exciting moments, projects and activities in GW Athletics during the fall 2012 semester. Below is a list of moments generating some buzz for the second annual Georgey Awards this spring.
GW women's basketball graduate student Tara Booker had quite an afternoon against Howard on December 15 when she became the 27th member of GW's 1,000-point club late in the second half, then won the game on a four-point play with six seconds left. With GW trailing 60-57, Booker sank a three-pointer from the wing to tie the game and was fouled, then calmly sank the game-winning free throw. She finished with 18 points and nine rebounds in the game, scoring nine points during GW's 19-5 game-ending run to complete a 13-point comeback.
Bolstered by hundreds of students, student-athletes, alumni and fans, a season-high crowd packed the Charles E. Smith Center for the BUFF OUT game against Kansas State, providing the men's basketball team a home-court advantage and displaying an exciting college basketball atmosphere to a national television audience on CBS Sports Network. Supported by members of the swimming team in Speedos and men's water polo team in holiday sweaters, as well as numerous GW Alumni and members of the GW Student Association and Greek Life, the GW Student Body was instrumental in creating an exciting environment to support the Colonials in their near upset of the Wildcats.
GW volleyball senior Candace Silva-Martin set a new Atlantic 10 all-time record in convincing fashion, totaling a career-high 36 digs in a November 4 match against Rhode Island to move into sole possession of the conference's career digs mark with 2,105. The Fremont, Calif., native concluded her career with 2,126 digs, narrowly edging out Xavier's Stephanie Vorherr (2,093) in the final weeks of the season to retain her crown. Silva-Martin led the conference in digs as a freshman and junior and owns the top three spots on GW's single-season digs record list.
4 - GW Athletics Aligns with You Can Play Project and GW Global Women's Institute
GW student-athletes voiced their support for two important causes this fall:
The George Washington University men's and women's basketball teams proudly held the annual Colonials Invasion season tip-off event at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in nearby Fort Myer, Va., on October 12. With the men's team tracing its roots back to the venerable facility where it played home games from 1956 to 1975, the night was equal parts celebrating GW basketball and honoring the brave men and women of the military.
With 12 saves in a 12-11 win over 19th-ranked California Baptist on October 5, senior Cameron Illes became GW men's water polo's all-time saves leader with 961. Earlier that night, he matched his own program single-game record with 19 saves in an 8-7 win over Chapman. The Pittsburgh native equaled his career high with 267 saves on the season, the third-highest single-season total in school history, and finished his career with 1,061 in four years, over 100 more than previous leader Tony Paster.
7 - Trio of GW Student-Athletes Recognized as Department Tops 4,000 Community Service Hours
Anchored by the first-ever Community Service Student-Athletes of the Month in lacrosse sophomore Mackenzie Jones, men's swimming senior Stephan Franke and women's soccer senior Jane Wallis, GW student-athletes surpassed more than 4,000 hours of community service to the greater Washington community in the fall semester.
On October 11, George Washington alumnus ('86) and Athletic Hall of Fame member ('99) Gregg Ritchie was named head coach of GW baseball. Coach Ritchie returned to his alma mater following a 30-year career in professional baseball, including the past two seasons as hitting coach for Major League Baseball's Pittsburgh Pirates. During his playing days at GW, Coach Ritchie was a three-time All-Atlantic 10 Outfielder and the A-10 Player of the Year as a senior before being drafted by the San Francisco Giants in the eighth round of the 1986 First Year Player Draft.
On Sunday, Sept. 23, GW student-athletes, head coaches and administrators ventured just blocks from campus to gain a better understanding of the commitment, respect and determination of some of our nation's greatest leaders who are memorialized on the National Mall at the second annual GW Student-Athlete Leadership Day. 450 current Colonials joined leadership from the Department of Athletics and Recreation, GW Colonial Army, Club Sports Council and Student Association for a tour of the Thomas Jefferson, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Martin Luther King Jr. Memorials to examine the distinct attributes unique to the leaders - pillars now integral to life as Colonials who seek to Raise High the Buff and Blue.
Foreshadowing the success he enjoyed through the first month of the season, men's basketball senior forward Isaiah Armwood threw down an alley-oop dunk from classmate Lasan Kromah just four seconds into the season-opener against Youngstown State - his first game wearing the Buff and Blue. 10 games into his debut season with the Colonials after transferring from Villanova, Armwood led the team with 14 dunks and 13.4 points per game, paced the Atlantic 10 with 8.9 rebounds per game and four double-doubles, and ranked in the top 10 in the nation with 3.4 blocks per game.
Freshman Bogdan Petkovic was named Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Southern Division Rookie of the Year, becoming the first-ever Colonials men's water polo player to earn the CWPA's top rookie honor. Petkovic was also tabbed to the All-South First Team, becoming just the second-ever GW freshman and first since Peter Clifford in 1994 to garner first-team accolades. The native of Belgrade, Serbia, concluded his impressive inaugural campaign with a single-season program record 96 steals while ranking third on the team with 45 goals, 24 assists and 69 points.
GW women's soccer midfielder Kristi Abbate was named to the Atlantic 10 All-Rookie Team following a breakout freshman season. Abbate was the lone freshman and one of just five players to start all 18 matches for the Colonials in 2012 and she matched senior Adriana Moya for the team lead with eight points on three goals and two assists. The Northport, N.Y., native took a team-high 34 shots and recorded a team-best two game-winning goals this season.
The GW men's soccer team gave rookie head coach Craig Jones a golden win in his debut as junior Tyler Ranalli broke a scoreless draw in the 107th minute to lift GW to a thrilling 1-0 double-overtime victory over LIU Brooklyn on August 24. Sophomore Joe Holleran's initial shot was saved by the Blackbirds' goalie, but Ranalli knocked in the rebound for the dramatic win. Senior goalkeeper Alejandro Almodovar made seven saves in the shutout, including a diving stop late in the first overtime period to keep the game alive.
Freshman Reid Breck has been instrumental in helping the GW men's squash team achieve its highest ranking in program history as the Colonials are currently ranked No. 15 in the College Squash Association rankings. The Colonials used their biggest win in program history, a 5-4 triumph over then-No. 9 Penn on Nov. 17, vault up the national rankings. Breck has gotten off to a 9-0 start in individual matches, including an upset win over Trinity's Matthew Mackin, the 39th-best player in the CSA.
15 - GW Men's Tennis Makes Noise at National Tournaments
GW men's tennis players upset eight ranked opponents - six singles and two doubles - at a pair of prestigious fall tournaments (ITA/D'Novo All-American & ITA Atlantic Regional) as the Colonials look to claim their third straight Atlantic 10 Championship in the spring. Sophomore Francisco Dias - who debuted this fall as the No. 89 player in the country - earned victories over Top 58 players from Florida, Michigan and LSU, while junior transfer Nikita Fomin posted upsets over Top 70 players from VCU, Michigan State and Louisville. The doubles pair of Fomin and freshman Danil Zelenkov defeated a 28th-ranked pair from Penn State, and Dias and senior Alexander van Gils downed the No. 55 pair from Michigan.
Years of commitment and success at the club level translated into a banner moment for GW Athletics and Recreation in the fall - the introduction of sailing as the university's 23rd varsity sport. Head coach John Pearce and his roster of sailors made their debut at a pair of regattas on Sept. 8, 2012, then a month later clinched a coveted spot in the War Memorial conference championship event - its first as a varsity program.