SMU Men’s Basketball Announces Team Awards

April 16, 2011 by · Comments Off 

by Erica Penunuri
epenunuri@smu.edu

The SMU Men’s Basketball team celebrated the decade’s most successful season at Doubletree Campbell Center on Thursday.

With their first 20-win season, first post-season bid since 1999-2000, and finishing 20-15 in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament (CIT), its no wonder the 2010-2011 season has brought awards to individual players as well.

Senior and one of the Tri-Captains, Papa Dia brought home a slew of awards including; MVP, the Screener, Blocks/Deflections, Rebounds and Charges. He took his captain role to another level as he led the team throughout the season with impressive personal records.

Dia has taken 12th at SMU in points (1437), fourth in rebounds (911), fifth in blocked shots (143) and 10th in field goal percentage (51.8). The forward’s talents have also earned him spots in the following teams: 2011 CIT All-Tournament Team, NABC Division I All-District First Team, All-C-USA First Team and C-USA All-Defensive Team.

Dia also recently participated in the Portsmouth Invitational Tournment (PIT) that had only extended invites to 64 college players across the nation.

The Most Improved Player title, received by junior Robert Nyakundi, recognized the athlete’s skills and progress. From the 3-pont range, Nyakundi has set SMU and Conference-USA records. Shooting a hot 49.7 percent from behind the arc, the junior forward took second in NCAA and first in C-USA for 3-pointers.

Hitting 90 percent this season in free throws (tying the school’s record), the junior forward also took home the Free Throw Percentage Award.

Senior guard Ryan Harp received the Coach’s Award, senior Collin Mangrum finished his only season with SMU with the Hustle Award, senior guard Mike Walker earned the Defense Award, and freshman point-guard Jeremiah Samarrippas received the Best Assist to Turnover Ratio and Good Plays.

Junior guard Aliaksei Patsevich earned the team’s Academic Award and was named to the Conference USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll.

Coach Doherty and the six seniors all spoke at the ceremony not only about the past season but plans for the team’s future.

The Daily Update: Monday, April 4

April 4, 2011 by · Comments Off 

The Daily Update: Monday, April 4 from SMUDailyMustang.com on Vimeo.

A would be teenage suicide bomber was arrested in Pakistan and why Southwest airlines may have some holes in their business strategy. When was the last time you got involved in a pillow fight, if it has been a while you might have missed the time of your life this weekend, all this and more on your Daily Update. Anchored by SMU-TV’s Bridget Bennett.

Texas A&M Women’s Basketball Advances to First Ever Final Four

March 30, 2011 by · 4 Comments 

By Ali Williams
ajwilliams@smu.edu

After their unlikely 58-46 win over top seeded Baylor in the NCAAW Dallas Regional Tuesday night, the Texas A&M Women’s Basketball Team advances to their very first Final Four in school history.

Coming into the game A&M (31-5) had lost eight straight to Baylor (34-3), including three this season.

This time, the Aggies jumped out with a 7-0 lead in the first few minutes of the game and never looked back. They led the entire game holding a 16-point lead at one time, and made key plays to finish strong.

Sydney Carter was the leading performer for A&M with 22 points and 6 rebounds.

Baylor’s All-American Brittney Griner, although the top scorer for her team, only scored 20 points after coming off of a 40-point game Sunday against Wisconsin-Green Bay.

Griner’s shooting game struggled, with only 6 of 18 shots from the field connecting. She was also just 8 of 15 in free throws after making all 10 attempts on Sunday.

When the Lady Bears closed the gap to 48-41 with 4.5 minutes to go after two of Griner’s successful free throw attempts, A&M’s Sydney Colson became a pivotal player.

Colson scored the next five points for the Aggies, all in free throws. After being fouled on a shot and making both free throws, she stole the ball back only to be fouled again while driving the ball for a layup. Her five-in-a-row connections bumped her team’s lead back up to 53-41 before their final victory.

Aggie Tyra White scored 10 points and had 8 rebounds. Her teammate Adaora Elonu had 8 points and 10 rebounds.

The All-American post player and overall top scorer for the Aggies, Danielle Adams, had a less than average shooting game against Baylor. She completed the game with only six points. Connecting with 3 of 12 from the field and missing all five of her three pointers, the senior’s defensive game was her stronger suit this time around.

She was a lockdown defender on Griner, moving her into bad shots off the block and shutting Griner down more than she was previously used to.

Senior Lady Bear Melissa Jones scored 13 points and made 7 rebounds.

In an Associated Press article, Texas A&M Head Coach Gary Blair said, “This was a very special game. We didn’t ask to play Baylor, we asked to be recognized for what we accomplished during the year. They chose to put us in the same region. … Both of us could have been in the Final Four, both of us should have been in the Final Four.”

The Aggies next face Stanford, another number one seed, in the national semifinals.

Mustangs Advance to CIT Semifinals After Defeating Northern Iowa

March 22, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

By Erica Penunuri
epenunuri@smu.edu

SMU Men’s Basketball have not seen this many victories in a post season since 1956. Thanks to Monday night’s victory over Northern Iowa, 57-50, the ‘Stangs advance to the Semifinals in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament.

The game started off tight as the Northern Iowa Panthers took the lead. It didn’t take long for the Mustangs to regroup as they set the lead in little as 4 minutes into the game. From there on out, the boys not only shielded Iowa but set some great personal and team records.

Papa Dia led SMU with 17 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, making for his 16th double-double of the season (29th of his career).

Teammates Collin Mangrum and Robert Nyakundi followed with 11 points each. Mangrum also contributed with five rebounds and three assists while Nyakundi extended his personal best of three-pointers hit in a season to 93.

Mustangs stomped out Northern Iowa in rebounds and defensive playing.

SMU looks to break school history with making it to the fourth game in postseason. The Mustangs are the first to advance in the CIT semifinals. They either play the Santa Clara Broncos (21-14) or the San Francisco Dons (19-14) at Moody Coliseum on Friday at 7 p.m.

Daily Update: Tuesday, March 22

March 22, 2011 by · Comments Off 

What men’s basketball record got broken? Are the attacks on Libya having any effect? And what marathon runner broke a world record? Find out all this and more on your Daily Update!

Daily Update: Tuesday, March 22 from SMUDailyMustang.com on Vimeo.

SMU Athletics: Spring Break Recap

March 21, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

By Marissa Belske
msbelske@smu.edu

While most SMU students were at home or on a beach somewhere, the devoted SMU students athletes continued to play as their season continued on.

It was a successful week for the Mustangs with men’s basketball, women’s swimming and track all stepping up to the plate and delivering for SMU athletics.

Men’s Baksetball

Over spring break, men’s basketball won it’s first postseason game since 1988 with a victory over Oral Roberts in round one of the CIT (CollegeInsider.com Tournament). This was SMU’s first postseason appearance since 2000.

In the victory, senior Papa Dia continued his regular season dominace with 17 points, 15 rebounds and five blocked shots. The victory allowed SMU to continue on to round two of the CIT.

In the second round of the CIT the Mustangs came up successful against Jacksonville. In the 63-62 victory, the Mustangs shot 63.2 percent from the field, topping jacksonville’s 35.1 percent.

Papa Dia continued to impress with 24 points, eight rebounds and three blocked shots. Jeremiah Samarippas had a career-high 16 points, hitting 3-for-3 from the 3-point line.

The Mustangs compete in the quarterfinals of the CIT this Monday, March 21 against Northern Iowa.

Women’s Swimming

Women’s swimming finished out their 2010-2011 season with a 36th place finish at the NCAA Championships.

Junior swimmer Therese Svendsen earned the honor of All-American as she placed ninth in the 100-yard backstoke. Freshmen Nina Rangelova and Genny Konicke also competed for SMU in the NCAA Championships.

Track and Field

SMU track and field kicked of their 2011 outdoor season last week at the TCU invitational. Several Mustangs set personal bests while in Fort Worth.

Junior Ayla Gill went for 61.70 meters in the hammer throw, topping the rest of the field by over ten meters and setting her personal best.

Egheosa Osawemsenza and Mary Alenbratt also set personal bests with a 1:03.86 finish in the 400 meter hurdles and a 2:09.81 second place finish in the 800 meter run respectively.

Viktoria Leks and Lisa Egarter took the second and third spots in the high jump while Silje Fjortoft and Lara Bodinson also placed second and third respectively in the 1500 meter run.

Women’s Basketball Concludes 2010-2011 Season With Loss to UTEP

March 10, 2011 by · Comments Off 

By Marissa Belske
msbelske@smu.edu

SMU women’s basketball fell to the UTEP Miners Wednesday night in round one of the Conference USA Tournament. With the victory, UTEP moves on to the quarterfinals where they face Conference USA Champions Houston. SMU concludes its 2010-2011 season at 14-16.

SMU’s Christine Elliot led the Mustangs, earning her third double-double of the season. Elliot led all scorers with 18 points and pulled down 10 rebounds. Sophomore Alisha Filmore reached double-figure points with 15 and Samantha Mahnesmith had a team-best six assists.

Ninth-seeded UTEP went 46 percent from the field, including nine three pointers to take the 75-57 victory. SMU was held to 30.8 percent from the field, including shooting 1-for-21 the three-point line.

SMU Women’s Basketball Falls in Regular Season Finale

March 4, 2011 by · Comments Off 

By Marissa Belske
msbelske@smu.edu

SMU women’s basketball concluded their regular season Thursday night with a loss against the Rice Owls of Houston. The final score was 73-63 in Moody Coliseum where the Mustangs finished out the season eighth in Conference USA.

Senior Haley Day put forth a strong performance in her last home game as a Mustang, posting double-double figures with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

“Haley really did a good job of hitting the boards,” said Mustang Head Coach Rhonda Rompola. “Her pursuit of the basketball is so good. I wish we could have 15 players that go after the ball like Haley Day.”

Senior Raquel Christian also performed strong bringing in 10 points for the Mustangs. Sophomore Alisha Filmore also provided a strong offensive front for the Mustangs with her 14 points.

The SMU defense held Rice to just 39.3 percent from the field, but the Mustangs where unable to stop the Owl’s Jessica Kuster. The 10-time C-USA Freshman of the Week scored 23 points and brought down 13 rebounds.

The Mustangs will play ninth-seeded UTEP at 8:30 p.m. in the first round of the Conference USA Tournament Wednesday, March 9, in El Paso, Texas.

Women’s Basketball Sets Record in Victory over UTEP

February 27, 2011 by · Comments Off 

By Marissa Belske
msbelske@smu.edu

SMU women’s basketball(14-14, 7-8 C-USA) defeated the UTEP Miners(14-13, 6-9 C-USA) in El Paso Sunday night. The 70-64 victory completed the Mustang’s season sweep of the Miners.

SMU’s Raquel Christian led the Mustang attack setting a new school record. Christian set the SMU single-game record in 3-pointers with eight 3-point field goals, scoring a career-high 32 points. The senior went 11 for 16 from the field and a precise 8 for 12 from behind the three point arc. Christian’s 32 points is the 10th most in the program’s history.

The Mustangs went 24 for 52 in the game shooting 46.2 percent from the field. The game was close to the final seconds when junior Samantha Mahnesmith recorded 3 of 4 free throws in the final 20 seconds the take the victory. Mahnesmith scored 13 points on the night.

Senior Haley Day continued to impress, reaching double figures for the third-straight game with 10 points.

SMU concludes there regular season play this Thursday, March 3 against Rice at home in Moody Coliseum. Prior to the game the seniors will celebrate their last home game with Senior Day activities.

SMU Men’s Basketball Defeats Rice in Overtime

February 24, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

By Erica Penunuri
epenunuri@smu.edu

The SMU men’s basketball showed their strength Wednesday night at Moody Coliseum in defeating the Rice Owls (12-15, 4-9) in overtime. SMU Mustangs (17-10, 8-5) took the lead early on leading 15-10.

Both teams battled it out for possession until senior forward Papa Dia broke the tea-party with a lay up cutting through Rice’s defense. Much of the crowd’s momentum and intensity carried on into the court as the players picked up the game.

As tensions rose so did fouls – with less than 7 minutes remaining in the first half, SMU and Rice had tied for team fouls (6). With less than 5 min Papa Dia posted a basket bringing the Stangs to 23. Teammate Collin Mangrum followed with a 3-pointer putting the Stangs at 26, leaving Rice trailing with 16.

Coming back from the half, Rice began to pick up their game. Rice’s forward Lucas Kuipers hit a 3-pointer, dangerously closing the gap 30-28. Robert Nyakundi then hit a field goal followed by Papa Dia, who hit a slam dunk bringing Moody Coliseum to its feet.

Many fouls from Rice handed over SMU points as free shots were successfully executed by Mike Walker and Robert Nyakundi.
Rice attempted to pass up the ‘Stangs solid defense but failed as SMU’s defense did an outstanding job of playing off the ball and anticipating any rebound. In the final 11min SMU led 38-29.

With only 11 seconds left the score was 56-52. Rice came back with a game threatening 3-pointer, resulting in a time out for SMU followed by free shots tying the two teams 57-57. Moody had been on its feet the past fifteen minutes and prepared themselves for another ten, as SMU and Rice went into overtime.

SMU proved themselves successful in free throws in the overtime, hitting 80% field goals in overtime alone. With shooting power, the Mustangs managed to outscore the Owls earning them a 76-66 victory.

SMU students chanted “Hey hey hey, Goodbye!” as the Mustangs ended the game with a solid triumph in an anything but upsetting game.

Robert Nyakundi scored the game high of 26 points for SMU while Papa Dia added 20 and Mike Walker 10.

The Mustangs return to the court again Saturday the 26th at Marshall.

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