Spring sports in full swing
The Bulldogs get ready to start the season
Baseball season is now less than a month away, and the Diamond ‘Dogs are looking to extend their Western Athletic Conference tournament championships to three straight and once again enter national title contention.
With stars such as slugger Tom Mendonca and ace Holden Sprague now out of Bulldog uniforms, head coach Mike Batesole will have to turn to his young, but tested squad.
Preseason All-American selections Danny Muno, junior, and Dusty Robinson, sophomore, will lead a team looking to improve on a 32-20 2009 campaign.
Fresno State will begin its 2010 season on Feb. 29 at home with a four-game series against Nebraska. The Bulldogs will also host a four-game series against Oregon beginning on March 5. In all, the ‘Dogs will host 35 home games with KMJ Radio airing 42 games total.
Bulldog softball still has more than two weeks until the 2010 season opens, but that is not stopping the team from grasping national recognition.
Fresno State’s preseason top-25 national ranking has generated plenty of hype and well-deserved recognition on campus.
Leading the way in 2010 will be pitcher Morgan Melloh who has already collected an abundance of awards in her career. The junior lefty is on the 2010 preseason watch list for the 9th Annual USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Year award. This is her second consecutive nomination.
Head coach Margie Wright’s No. 24 of 25 ranked softball squad will open the season with a home double-header against Santa Clara on Feb. 12.
The Bulldog equestrian team began its second half of the season with a 20-1 home win over UC Davis on Jan. 23.
The win marked the first of the season and the first of four straight home meets to open the spring season. The Bulldogs will host Stanford on Feb. 6, and compete in the Best in the West Tournament starting on Feb. 20.
So far, the ‘Dogs have had strong performances from freshman Chelsea Stone, who took home MVP honors in the UC Davis meet, and Lisa Wells who posted a team best score of 86 in the meet.
Fresno State is currently ranked No. 10 in the country in the most recent coach’s poll. Beginning on April 15, the Equestrian team will travel to Waco, Texas in the three-day-long Varsity Equestrian National Championships.
The Fresno State lacrosse team began its official practice on Jan. 18 in preparation for the second year of the program’s history.
Head coach Sue Behme’s squad will not begin regular season play until they travel to Philadelphia to take on La Salle, but will host two exhibition home matches against the Fresno Men’s Club Team on Feb. 6, and will host an alumni game on Feb. 20. In all, the ‘Dogs will host six regular season games.
Fresno State returns 10 players from last year’s team. Leading the way is the inaugural season’s leading scorer in junior Heather Jack. The Bulldogs had a rough premier season in 2009, losing all 14 games.
The team will travel to Denver, Colo. on April 29 to compete in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Conference Championship.
Men’s & Women’s Golf
Men’s and Women’s golf wrapped up fall play in October and November, but will continue the second half of their seasons very soon.
On the men’s side, spring play will open on Feb. 1 in Tuscon, Ariz. for the Arizona Intercollegiate and will compete in the WAC Championships held in Las Vegas starting on May 5.
The men’s team is lead by senior Grant Doverspike and freshmen Bhavik Patel on the course. Doverspike is the reigning WAC Player of the Year, while Patel completed his fall campaign as a 2009 U.S. Amateur semi-finalist.
The women’s team opens the second stint of its season on Feb. 13 in Las Cruces,
N.M. for the Peg Barnard Invitational. In late April, the ‘Dogs will head to Mesa, Ariz. for the WAC Championships.
Track & Field
Fresno State’s men’s track and field team opens its indoor season on Feb. 5 as they host the Run for the Dream meet inside the Save Mart Center.
The ‘Dogs are looking to improve on their 2009 fourth place finish at the WAC Championships, and will have to do so with a strong throws section headed by Peter Krumeich and Time Greene, both 2009 NCAA Regional qualifiers.
The women’s track and field team had a record-breaking 2009 season and will look to do much of the same when they also open in the Run for the Dream meet next Saturday. The Bulldogs will have a tough time replacing All-American thrower Sharon Ayala, but returns All-American and record-setting hurdler Latrisha Jordan.
Men’s & Women’s Tennis
The Fresno State men’s tennis team began the second portion of its season 2-0 with a WAC doubleheader victory over Idaho and Nevada at home on Jan. 24.
The No. 46 Bulldogs are 3-0 on the season and will look to remain perfect today in College Station, Tex. as they take on Texas A&M. The ‘Dogs are anchored by No. 20 doubles partners Mirko Zapletal and Taylor Leiby.
On the flip side, the women’s tennis team is also dominating on the court, now ranked No. 15 in the country in the International Tennis Association rankings. Head coach Simon Thibodeau boasts one of the nation’s strongest performers in No. 4 singles player Anastasia Petukhova. Like the men’s squad, the women have already begun their spring session, starting on Jan. 22 in Berkeley for the California Winter Invite. They will host Ohio State this Saturday.
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