Second semester sports highlights

With the semester coming to a close, The Observer looks back on Case Western Reserve University’s winter sports teams’ achievements. From upsetting top teams to dominating opponents at home, the Spartans have had plenty of top moments throughout the semester. Below is the most memorable moment from each team this semester.

Jan. 7: Women’s basketball upsets No. 10 CMU

Behind second-year guard Hillary Hellmann’s career high 35 points, the Spartans upset archrival and then-tenth ranked Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) 87-78 to open up University Athletic Association (UAA) play. The score was tied with just over five minutes to play, but the Spartans went on a 10-0 run to take a lead they would not relinquish. Hellman had a breakout season for the team, leading the country in three point field goal percentage (47.4 percent) and finishing second on the team with 17.5 points per game. CWRU ended the season with a 13-12 overall record.

Jan. 28: Swimming earns big wins over Baldwin Wallace

Both the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams secured blowout wins over Baldwin Wallace University, with the men prevailing 199-98 and the women winning 224.5-74.5. The women won an amazing 15 out of the 16 events they participated in, while the men won 12 of their 16 events. At the end of the season, the women finished seventh in the UAA and the men finished sixth. Third-year students Drew Hamilton and Oliver Hudgins, fourth-year student Andrew Henning and second-year student Brody Schmidt all competed at the NCAA Championships with the team finishing in 40th place.

Feb. 4: Four top four finishes for wrestlers

Four Spartan wrestlers notched top four finishes at the John Summa Tournament held at Baldwin Wallace University as the team placed fifth out of 13 teams. First-year student Andrew Munn (157 lbs) and second-year student Brian McNamara (285 lbs) each took home silver medals, while first-year student Michael Petersen (149 lbs) and second-year student Gavin Dersh-Fisher (197 lbs) placed fourth in their weight classes. Overall, CWRU finished third in the UAA, with fourth-year student Matt Moy taking home All-UAA honors at 125 lbs, and 18th in the Mideast Region.

Feb. 19: Men’s basketball takes down No. 6 Rochester

In their penultimate game of the season, the Spartans pulled a shocking upset, defeating then-No. 6 University of Rochester 76-72. Rochester would eventually reach the national quarterfinals, but not before CWRU, led by third-year guard Colin Zucker, beat them in New York. Zucker had a career-high 27 points and first-year forward Connor Nally added 19 points and eight rebounds. The Spartans would end the season winning three of their final five games, en route to a 8-17 overall record. The team had two additional wins in UAA play and finished seventh in the conference.

Feb. 25: Women sweep weight throw at UAAs

Third-year thrower Cassandra Laios, fourth-year thrower Temi Omilabu and third-year thrower Nimi Gupta finished in first, second and third place respectively in the weight throw event at the UAA Indoor Championship. Laios heaved the weight 15.89 meters and also won the shot put event the following day, becoming the first female Spartan ever to sweep the events. The women’s team finished fourth in the conference for both the indoor and outdoor seasons, with Laios winning three conference titles.

March 14: Men’s tennis beats top 10 team in exciting fashion

With the team’s match against No. 8 Whitman College tied 4-4, fourth-year student Kevin Dong defeated his opponent at fifth singles in a thrilling three-set finale. After taking the first set 7-5 and losing the second 2-6, Dong found himself in a 5-5 third set. He took three of the next four points to win the set and the match, for both himself and the Spartans. The team has posted a strong 20-6 record this season with two matches left to be played. CWRU hosts John Carroll University and Franciscan University of Steubenville on April 29 with the matches taking place on the Carlton Courts.

March 25: Baseball wins wild one, 20-15

In a game with 35 combined runs, 33 combined hits and six combined errors, the Spartans prevailed over then-No. 3 Emory University. After a perfectly normal 2-2 start through four innings, the two teams combined for 14 runs in the fifth as Emory took a 10-8 lead. CWRU had a slim 12-11 lead after seven innings of play, but the Eagles responded with four in the bottom of the eighth. The Spartans scored eight runs in the top of the ninth inning to secure the wild upset. Currently CWRU has a 21-14 record and sits in second place in the UAA.

March 27: Women’s tennis holds on against No. 31 Kenyon

Facing then-No. 31 Kenyon College, the Spartans got off to a quick 3-0 lead by sweeping the doubles matches. However, the Ladies fought back, tying the match with three straight wins in singles matches. First-year student Kendal Holladay won the next match in a thrilling three sets and third-year student Peyton Young followed with a victory to secure the team win. The win continued what would become an eight-game winning streak that included victories over four nationally ranked teams. At the end of the season, the Spartans finished fifth in the UAA with a 17-5 overall record.

April 9: Softball scores four in seventh to walk-off against NYU

As they have done all season, the Spartans pulled out a come-from-behind win against the Violets, walking off after scoring four runs in the final frame. After going down 5-1 in the top of the fifth, the team did not quit, scoring a run in the bottom half of the frame. Down to their final three outs, the Spartans offense exploded. Fourth-year pitcher Annie Wennerberg scored two runs with a single and tied the game by scoring on a single from first-year pitcher Nicole Carty. With two outs, first-year third baseman Melissa Cuellar smashed a double to right field, scoring Carty and winning the game. With just two games left in the season, CWRU sits in third place in the UAA.

April 23: Wahner sets record, wins UAA titles

Fourth-year sprinter Nathaniel Wahner won the UAA title in the 400-meter dash and broke a 21-year school record with a time of 47.64 seconds. He also became the first Spartan ever to win the 200-meter dash at the conference meet, besting the competition with a time of 21.71 seconds. Wahner helped break a 26-year school record in the 4×400 meter relay, winning a conference title in the process, and also teamed up with third-year students Ben Zelkin, Adrian Cannon and Zak Hurd to claim the UAA title in the 4×100 meter relay. Third-year student Sam Merriman added a win in the 5,000-meter run and first-year student Dominic Oddo claimed the conference championship in the long jump, as the Spartans finished third in the UAA.