College softball action heating up

College softball is headed into second week of playoff action, with three local programs still playing.
Mount Saint Mary follows up its win in the Skyline Conference tourney with its second appearance in the NCAA Division III championships. The Knights are headed to Ithaca for a four-team, double-elimination regional. The Mount opens with host Ithaca at 3:30 p.m. Friday, with Moravian and Worcester State opening at 1 p.m. The Ithaca regional games will have live video and stats available at athletics.ithaca.edu and livestream.com.
Army is the second seed in the Patriot League tournament, hosted by Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pa. The Black Knights will open play Thursday against Boston University at 2:30 p.m. Lehigh and Bucknell precede at 12 p.m. There will be three games Friday at 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m., and two games Saturday at 12 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. (if necessary). All Patriot tourney games can be viewed online at PatriotLeague.tv.
Vicky Lattanzio of nearby Fishkill plays for Lehigh.
Marist is the tourney host for the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference. The tourney got underway with two first-round games on Wednesday. On Thursday, Marist hosts Fairfield at 11:30 a.m., preceded by Manhattan and Quinnipiac at 9 a.m. There will be losers’ bracket games at 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. The games can be viewed online at MAAC.tv (subscription).

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Army’s Minato excited for tonight’s ESPN 3-point contest

By Ken McMillan
Times Herald-Record

Army’s Kelsey Minato didn’t travel all the way to Texas just to participate in a college 3-point shooting contest.
She wants to win.
“I am really competitive,’’ Minato said Wednesday night. “There are a lot of good shooters there for the girls. It will be tough but I think if I just shoot my shot, and stay down and square up and just let it go, I think I will be okay.’’
There are eight men and eight women selected for the 3-point contests, and eight men for the slam dunk competition. The show will be broadcast at 9 p.m. on ESPN.
Each female shooter will have 60 seconds to shoot 25 balls – five balls on five racks set up around the 3-point arc set at 20 feet, 9 inches. The fifth ball counts for two points as opposed to one. Two shooters will participate at a time, on opposite sides of the court. The top four scorers from the quarterfinal round advance to the semifinal round, and then the top two meet in the finals.
Joining Minato in the women’s contest are Rachel Banham of Minnesota; Katie Hempen of Arizona State; Maggie Lyon of Northwestern; Tiffany Mitchell of South Carolina; Lexi Eaton Rydalch of Brigham Young; Megan Podkowa of DePaul; and, Janee Thompson of Kentucky.
“I’m really excited,’’ Minato said. “I think it will be a lot of fun. There’s a lot of good shooters there so it will be good competition.’’
By season’s percentages, Minato is ranked highest at 47.8 percent (second in nation), followed by Banham (39.0 percent, 52nd) and Rydalch (37.8 percent, 63rd). By made 3-pointers per game, Banham ranks second in the nation (3.72), followed by Minato in fifth (3.38) and Rydalch in 47th (2.55).
The participants practiced at the Berry Center, located in the Houston suburb of Cypress, Texas, on Wednesday. Minato liked the arena to a familiar setting of Bucknell’s Sojka Pavilion.
“It wasn’t too bad,’’ Minato said of the recreation center setting with more than 8,000 seats. “I wasn’t sure what the court would be like, like if the backboard is going to be really far back from the bleachers. It felt pretty good. I got some shots up and my shot was feeling pretty good so hopefully I will be able to carry it over to (Thursday).’’
Minato has been practicing ever since Army was ousted in the first round of the NCAA tournament at Syracuse on March 18. With the help of coaches and teammates, they tried to simulate the contest conditions, only Army had only two ball racks, and neither could fit the required five basketballs. So there was a lot of rebounding, passing the ball, re-racking and movement of the racks, which made for chaotic conditions.
“It was tough trying to practice and trying to simulate how it’s going to be here,’’ Minato said. “There were a lot of things going on and it was really distracting. It was hard to focus when there’s things moving in front of me and balls flying everywhere.’’
“(Wednesday) was a lot easier because I got to practice with the actual ball, the actual rack and on the actual court,’’ she added. “I am glad I got some shots up at the actual competition (site).’’
Minato said she enjoyed spending time with her fellow competitors, comparing their collegiate experiences and discussing their post-graduate plans.
Minato said she hopes to be in contention by the end of the semifinal round.
“There’s a little bit more pressure because I am competing to win and I want to win,’’ Minato said, “but it’s also fun because it’s not like a game. It doesn’t count on our record or anything like that. I’m definitely out here to win. I didn’t just come here to shoot with other girls; I actually want to win.’’
Following the contest, Minato will make her way to Indianapolis to participate in two separate showcase camps on Saturday and Sunday in her bid to impress pro scouts.

kmcmillan@th-record.com
Twitter: @KenMcMillanTHR

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Spiker sad to leave Army, excited for opportunity at Drexel

By Ken McMillan
Times Herald-Record

WEST POINT – As a young, up-and-coming head basketball coach, Zach Spiker has been lured in the past with offers to leave his job at Army but nothing compares to his next assignment.
On Friday morning Spiker will be announced as the new coach at Drexel University, which plays in the Atlantic 10 Conference. He takes over for Bruiser Flint, who was let go after 15 seasons with the Dragons.
“It’s invigorating to be a part of Philadelphia basketball,’’ Spiker said late Thursday night. “Being there today, you could feel it.’’
Spiker leaves after seven seasons at West Point and an overall record of 102-112. During his tenure, Army put an end to a burdensome 27-year streak of losing seasons in 2012-13 and, this season, reached the national postseason for the first time since 1978. However, Spiker leaves with one big regret: not getting Army into the NCAA tournament for the first time.
There was raised hope when Patriot League top seed Bucknell was upset in the quarterfinal round, giving Army a rare semifinal home game but, like the Bison, the Black Knights also fell victim to Holy Cross in a rather forgettable outing. Army was granted a berth in the College Insider Tournament but lost at New Jersey Institute of Technology in an opening-round game, falling one victory short of 20 wins.
Army will be losing a heralded senior class that helped turn the program’s fortunes. Kyle Wilson, Tanner Plomb, Kevin Ferguson, Dylan Cox and Larry Toomey combined for 6,115 points over four seasons.
“I am excited for the future of West Point basketball,’’ Spiker said.
Spiker said the decision to leave West Point was not easy but this job was too good to refuse.
“I just haven’t had an opportunity like this,’’ Spiker said. “There have been other opportunities but not one as unique and special as one in the City of Philadelphia that has such a great tradition. … It’s an opportunity we’re very excited about and we’re jumping in with both feet very quickly.’’
Spiker said West Point will be hard to leave behind.
“That’s the one thing that I think people misanalyze, that just because you move on to another job, that it’s easy,’’ Spiker said while choking up. “West Point will always be a part of our lives, our kids’ lives. … It’s been a part of us. It’s the fabric of who our family is and that will never change.
“There’s parts that’s exciting (about leaving) and parts that’s really sad, because we’ve worked hard and built things the right way.’’

kmcmillan@th-record.com
Twitter: @KenMcMillanTHR

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Men’s basketball: College Insider Tournament schedule

The College Insider Tournament was announced late Sunday night, and it appears to be missing three matchups (maybe still to come) out of the 16 first-round contests.
Army will face New Jersey Tech on Wednesday in its first postseason appearance since 1978.
The CIT follows the old NIT system by doing away with a bracket format and scheduling the matchups after every round.
If Army wins, you have to figure the Black Knights would face the likes of Boston University or Fordham, Columbia, New Hampshire or Fairfield in the second round.
All early round games will be webcast at WatchCollegeInsider.com

Here is the round-of-32 schedule (all times Eastern). The NCAA RPI ratings as of late Sunday night are in RED:

Monday
223-Jackson State (19-15, Southwestern Athletic-third place) at 177-Sam Houston State (18-15, Southland-fourth place), 7:30 p.m.
206-South Carolina State (19-14, Mid Eastern-second place) at 92-Grand Canyon (25-6, Western Athletic-second place), 10 p.m.

Tuesday
194-Mercer (19-14, Southern-seventh place) at 165-Coastal Carolina (18-11, Big South-fourth place), 7 p.m.
96-Louisiana Monroe (20-13, Sun Belt-second place) at 167-Furman (18-15, Southern-third place), 7 p.m.
180-Ball State (19-13, Mid-American West-first place) at 149-Tennessee State (20-10, Ohio Valley East-second place), 8 p.m.

Wednesday
104-Texas Arlington (23-13, Sun Belt-third place) at 277-Savannah State (16-15, Mid-Eastern-fifth place), 7 p.m.
196-Boston University (18-14, Patriot-third place) at 176-Fordham (17-13, Atlantic 10-eighth place), 7 p.m.
220-Norfolk State (17-16, Mid-Eastern-third place) at 133-Columbia (21-10, Ivy-third place), 7 p.m.
179-New Hampshire (19-12, America East-fourth place) at 142-Fairfield (19-13, Metro Atlantic-fourth place), 7 p.m.
214-Army (19-13, Patriot-fourth place) at 207-New Jersey Tech (17-14, Atlantic Sun-third place), 7:30 p.m.
212-Tennessee Martin (19-14, Ohio Valley West-first place) at 156-Central Michigan (17-15, Mid American-second place), 8 p.m.
75-Cal Irvine (25-9, Big West-second place) at 218-North Dakota (17-15, Big Sky-sixth place), 8 p.m.
85-Texas A&M Corpus Christi (25-7, Southland-second place) at 155-Louisiana Lafayette (17-14, Sun Belt-fourth place), 8 p.m.

Round of 16
Fri.-Sun. March 18-20

Quarterfinals
Tues.-Thur. March 22-24

Semifinals
Sunday, March 27

Championship
Tuesday, March 29

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Men’s basketball: Army to play at NJ Tech Wednesday

Army’s first foray into the national postseason since 1978 will take the Black Knights to Newark, N.J. on Wednesday, March 16, to face New Jersey Institute of Technology in a first-round game of the CollegeInsider.com Tournament.
Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. For ticket information, go to NJITtix.com.
New Jersey Tech (17-4), of the Atlantic Sun Conference, will be making its second consecutive appearance in the CIT. The Highlanders won three home games in the 2015 CIT.
Army (19-13) will be seeking its fifth 20-win season in program history. Kyle Wilson needs just six points to reach 2,000 in his career.
Playing on the road has not been a disadvantage for Army this season – the Black Knights are 11-5, tied for the fourth-highest road win total in NCAA Division I. However, the Highlanders are 24-8 at the Fleisher Athletic Center the past two seasons.
Tech’s  Tim Coleman needs six points to reach 1,000 in his career. Junior Damon Lynn needs 13 points to break his own school single-season scoring mark (578), which he established last season.

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Army women’s basketball semifinal preview vs. Lehigh

What: Patriot League semifinals
Who: No. 4 Lehigh Mountain Hawkws (18-12, 10-8 PL) vs. No. 1 Army Black Knights (27-2, 17-1 PL)
When: 5 p.m. today
Where: Christl Arena, West Point (5,043, plenty of good seats available)
Internet: PatriotLeague.tv
Radio: WBNR (1260-AM), WLNA (1420-AM); Sirius 119, XM 203
How to follow: On Twitter, use hashtag #V845U to follow Ken McMillan’s updates
Second semifinal: Loyola (Md.) vs. Bucknell, 7:30 p.m.
Championship: 6 p.m. Saturday, CBS Sports Network

Army’s projected starters: No. 5 Kelsey Minato, Sr., G, 23.7 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 3.8 apg; No. 21 Janae McNeal, Soph., G, 7.7 ppg, 4.0 rpg; No. 24 Jean Parker, Sr. G/F, 7.3 ppg, 5.o rpg; No. 33 Aimee Oertner, Sr. F/C, 9.7 ppg, 6.7 rpg; No. 41 Brianna Johnson, Sr., G/F, 5.0 ppg, 2.6 rpg

Lehigh’s projected starters: No. 11 Taylor Campbell, Soph., G, 2.2 ppg, 0.8 rpg; No. 11 Lexi Martins, Jr., F, 15.2 ppg, 13.8 rpg; No. 30 Quinci Mann, Soph., G, 13.3 ppg, 1.6 rpg; No. 34 Kerry Kinek, Sr., F, 11.6 ppg, 8.0 rpg; No. 35 Amina Affini, Sr., G, 6.2 ppg, 2.8 rpg

Synopsis:
This is a very dangerous matchup for the Black Knights. Army did sweep Lehigh during the regular season (63-39 at home on Dec. 30, 69-49 at Lehigh on Feb. 27) but the Mountain Hawks beat the Black Knights in last year’s semifinals, 76-57, on March 9, 2015.

Lehigh has four players represented on the Patriot League’s all-star teams. Junior forward Lexi Martins made the first team, sophomore guard Quinci Mann made the second squad, senior forward Kerry KIney earned third-team mention and freshman guard Hailey Pascoe was named to the all-rookie team.

Army’s Kelsey Minato won the Patriot League player of the year honors for the third time (2013, 2014) and made the first team. Aimee Oertner was a second-team choice.

Lehigh has won three Patriot League championships, but none since 2010.

Army has won 17 consecutive games, a program record. The Black Knights’ 27 wins is also a program record.

A win tonight would give Lehigh its seventh 20-win season

Army’s Janae McNeal has scored in every game this season, as have Minato and Oertner.

Aimee Oertner is coming off a nine-block game against Colgate, giving hr 283 for her career.

Army has a 4-1 game record as a No. 1 seed in the tournament.

Army is 3-4 all-time against Lehigh in the Patriot League playoffs. However, the Black Knights have dropped their last four playoff meetings with Lehigh (2004, 2007, 2009, 2015).

Army is headed to the national postseason regardless of finish in the tournament, as the No. 1 seed. Army will head to either it’s second NCAA appearance in the past three seasons (and third overall) or to its third Women’s National Invitation Tournament. Army lost to Maryland in the 2014 NCAA tournament, and lost to Fordham (2013) and St. John’s (2015) in the WNIT.

Kelsey Minato (2,500 career points) is averaging 21.6 points in seven Patriot playoff games, Aimee Oertner 7.3 and Jean Parker 4.6. Brianna Johnson is averaging six points in five Patriot playoff games.

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Breaking news: Army men’s basketball to play in postseason

By Ken McMillan
Times Herald-Record

WEST POINT – Zach Spiker could hardly contain his excitement, listening to the words that people associated with Army men’s basketball have longed to hear.
“On behalf of the College Insiders Tournament, we would love to invite Army basketball into this year’s CIT and bring postseason basketball back to West Point for the first time since 1978,’’ selection chairman Jamie Kachmarik told the team over a speaker phone on Tuesday afternoon.
With that, the team room in the Kimsey Center, packed with about 45 people, broke out into huge applause.
“Mr. Kachmarik, as you can tell from that applause that is a resounding yes. We happily accept,’’ Spiker replied.
Army’s long wait to return to postseason play is over. The full 32-team CIT bracket will not be announced until Sunday once conference tournaments are concluded, though the Black Knights may learn of their opponent before then. The CIT emphasizes regional play in the early rounds that begin Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.
Army officially announced its selection on Thursday morning.
It’s not the NCAA tournament, or even the National Invitation Tournament, which Army played in eight times, the last coming in 1978, but it is clearly a positive step for a program that has rid itself of a haunting past that included 27 consecutive losing seasons until a talented Class of 2016 came along.
“I am just very happy to see them rewarded for their dedication and hard work and commitment to the program,’’ said Spiker, now in his seventh season as head coach.
Army learned of its CIT bid two days after a stunning 60-38 loss to eventual champion Holy Cross in the Patriot League semifinals on Sunday, putting an end to NCAA tournament hopes once again.
“After a loss that we had Sunday,’’ said senior Tanner Plomb, “it was kind of hard to digest everything. Hearing news like this definitely brings a little light onto the next couple weeks. It is definitely disappointing (not getting to the NCAAs) … but being able to play in the postseason is something special no matter what tournament. To bring that back to men’s basketball is exciting.’’
That was the message shared with the team by party attendees Pat Harris, Dr. Jim Oxley and Bill Schutsky, three links to the last times Army played in the postseason.
“Thanks a lot, thank you very much,’’ Harris told the team, as a proud alum. He played on the 1978 NIT team that lost to Rutgers 72-70, and later went on to coach Army. “Everybody has been waiting for this for a long time. We do appreciate it so thank you very much.’’
Oxley, the 1969-70 team captain, played on three of Army’s NIT teams. He told the players they have an opportunity to reach a milestone of 20 wins with just one more victory, cementing their place in team history.
“I am just so excited for the coach and the players, especially the seniors who have been through this for the last four years, with that pressure on their head to make it to a postseason tournament,’’ Oxley said. “This couldn’t be better. We’re very excited for them. We know they are going to do well. I think this will round out a very successful four years for the seniors, and be a platform the program to continue to improve.’’
Schutsky, a 1968 team captain who played in the 1966 and 1968 NIT, was impressed with how this year’s team bounced back after Plomb and Kevin Ferguson returned from injuries and made a late run to secure the No. 4 seed and home court in the Patriot League playoffs.
“You guys had a great year,’’ Schutsky said. “We’re really proud of you for all your accomplishments … The thing that stands out for me is you had a lot of adversity this year, you had a lot of injuries and you never quit. … That is really a great thing for you. Don’t quit now. You have everything in front of you. Don’t quit now.’’
Kachmarik, during his three-minute phone call, said the selection committee was impressed by Army’s 65 wins posted over the last four years, its 11-5 road record this season and the unique distinction of having four 1,000-point career scorers from the senior class.
“Every season, there are a handful of stories that are captivating,’’ Spiker said. “I think Army going back to the postseason for the first time since 1978 is certainly one of those.’’
The CIT, created in 2009, is made up of mid-major schools only, so it should be an even playing field. Through the first seven years, CIT teams have averaged 20 wins during the season.
“No matter what team we play, we have a chance to win the game,’’ said senior point guard Dylan Cox. “I believe in the guys, I believe in my teammates and I believe in the talent. I believe in the coaching staff. I think any game we play at the mid-major level, for this instance, I think we have a chance to make a deep run and win the thing.’’
Army played in the NIT in 1961, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969, 1970 and 1978 – the Black Knights finished third in 1964, 1965 and 1970. Army was invited to the 1968 NCAA tournament but coach Bob Knight turned down the offer because most coached figured it would be impossible to beat powerhouses UCLA or Houston in the NCAAs, and Knight believed Army could win the NIT. Years later, Army still has the dubious distinction of being one of five programs that were around when NCAA Division I was created in 1949 to have never played in the NCAA tourney.

kmcmillan@th-record.com
Twitter: @KenMcMillanTHR

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Kevin Ferguson has spurred Army basketball’s latest run

By Ken McMillan
Times Herald-Record

WEST POINT – Army senior center Kevin Ferguson has been more surprised with his production of late than his coach, Zach Spiker.
Ferguson produced seven double-double stat efforts in a row and was just two rebounds shy of an eighth in Saturday’s loss to Lehigh.
“Truthfully, we’ve known what he’s been capable of,’’ Spiker said. “He was surging of late … We are thrilled that it’s coming out.’’
Ferguson had 17 points and 10 rebounds against Lafayette, 17 and 14 against Loyola, 24 and 12 against Colgate, 20 and 14 at American, 25 and 13 versus Holy Cross, 22 and 19 against Navy, 18 and 15 versus Boston and 14 and eight against Lehigh. He shot 61 percent from the field during the stretch, which is equal to his season-long numbers.
“I just felt like I was making shots I knew I could make,’’ said Ferguson, who averages 13.4 points and 9.7 rebounds. “We were playing hard and with a lot of energy as a team and I was able to feed off of that and get the ball in easy spots and just finish around the rim.’’
At 6-foot-10 but just 200 pounds, Ferguson says he’s not a “brusier” player who can mix it up physically with opposing centers, so Army’s fast-paced game gives him more opportunities to score in unsettled situations.
“Kevin Ferguson has worked consistently and has improved,’’ Spiker said. “We’re very fortunate that he went to prep school and we got this fifth year with him. I think he has just taken off. I think his work throughout the season with coach Allen as his position coach (has been important) … and his confidence to make plays. I don’t know if the plays are all that different but he’s just making them and he’s had more reps doing it and he has been doing a good job.’’
The late surge by Ferguson certainly caught the eye of the Patriot League coaches, who voted Ferguson to the second-team all-star squad (his first such recognition in four seasons). “When hard work is rewarded, it’s great to see,’’ Spiker said. “This is very well-deserving.’’
Ferguson was also named him to the league’s All-Defensive Team, the honor for which he takes more pride.
“Defense is how I’ve got a lot of my playing time early, so I just try to keep that up’’ said Ferguson, who has 41 blocks and 13 steals this season. “I try around the rim … if I am not blocking shots I am altering shots so that all-defensive team is one I am proud of.’’
Ferguson said the individual awards are nice but the main objective is to bring home Army’s first Patriot League championship and the NCAA tournament berth that comes with it.
“None of that matters beyond a Patriot League title,’’ he said.

kmcmillan@th-record.com
Twitter: @KenMcMillanTHR

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Army baseball preview

By Ken McMillan
Times Herald-Record

WEST POINT – Necessity has brought about a whirlwind of change for the Army baseball team.
A season-ending hand injury to catcher Ben Smith and a handful of significant graduation losses prompted third-year head coach Matt Reid to open up competition for just about every job headed into fall practice. With the season getting underway on Friday, Reid is still trying to determine a lineup that will look like mix-and-match for at least a couple weeks. He’s drawing on a roster that has 12 freshmen and nine sophomores among them.
“We’re young and we’re inexperienced at just about every position except first base and centerfield,’’ said Reid, whose team went 21-26 a year ago. “We have new guys playing all these new positions. They are good athletes and they are working their butt off and getting after things, so we’re excited.’’
Kris Lindner, who makes the move from second base to shortstop, said the lineup shakeup created “room for opportunity.’’
“Pretty much every position was wide open,’’ he said, “so there was a lot of competition every day.’’
“The competition makes all the guys better,’’ said Ryan Levenhagen, who returns to a platoon situation at first base. “I don’t think anyone is going to be upset about playing time because we’re all out here to win as a team.’’
Levenhagen (.239, 12 RBI last season), Alex Dickerson (.250, 13 RBI) and Stu Schley are vying for time at first. Josh White, Justin Reece and David Monge are battling for time at second. New catcher Jon Rosoff (.236, 17 RBI) will back up Lindner (.343) at short. Freshman Trey Martin and Jake Clark are lead candidates at third, backed up by Reece and Monge.
Jacob Page (.269, 4 HR, 28 RBI) returns in center, promising freshman Matt Hudgins is in left and Monge, Reece, Brandon Lee (.219, 14 RBI) and Greg Carter seek time in right.
Three of the four starting pitcher spots are locked down. Sophomore lefty Jeremy Mortensen (2-5, 4.58) has a good slider and change-up. Senior Garrison Franklin (2-1, 3.06) throws 86-88 mph and has good action. Sophomore Matt Ball (4-3, 3.92) has an assortment of pitches and throws mid-to-upper 80s. Senior Patrick Gardner (2-4, 6.23) is a candidate for the fourth spot.
Army has to replace mainstays such as outfielder Mark McCants (.346, 38 RBI), shortstop Alex Jensen (19 RBI), designated hitter Harold Earls (19 RBI) and Yankees draft pick Alex Robinett (2.01, 6-5 record). The Black Knights ranked last in batting (.256), its stolen base production dropped by 40 percent and the staff ERA jumped by 1.21 runs to 4.07, as Army missed the playoffs.
Franklin said the team just needs a little time to find its way.
“We lost some big-time pitchers last year, some big hitters,’’ he said. “Now it opens up to see who steps up this year and fills those big shoes and maybe try to perform even better than those guys.’’
The Patriot League coaches have voted Army to finish last among the six teams.
“Being the underdog makes every win that much better,’’ Lindner said.
The players and coaches are encouraged by what they have seen during intra-squad scrimmages throughout the winter.
“We’re looking really good,’’ Levenhagen said. “I think everyone is really excited to see what we will bring this year.’’

kmcmillan@th-record.com
Twitter: @KenMcMillanTHR

Army baseball schedule
February
Fri. 19 – Bryant, at Cary, N.C., 3 p.m.
Sat. 20 – Penn State (DH), at Cary, N.C., 1:30 p.m.
Sun. 21 – Monmouth, at Cary, N.C., 11 a.m.
Fri. 26 – at Middle Tennessee, 3 p.m.
Sat. 27 – at Lipscomb, 2 p.m.
Sun. 28 – at Belmont, 12 p.m.
March
Fri. 4 – at N.C. Greensboro, 4 p.m.
Sat. 5 – at N.C. Greensboro, 2 p.m.
Sun. 6 – at N.C. Greensboro, 1 p.m.
Wed. 9 – Hofstra, 3 p.m.
Sat. 12 – Massachusetts (DH), at Tampa, Fla., 12 p.m.
Sun. 13 – Massachusetts, at Tampa, Fla., 12 p.m.
Tues. 15 – North Dakota State, at Tampa, Fla., 2 p.m.
Thur. 17 – Harvard, at Tampa, Fla., 2 p.m.
Fri. 18 – Harvard (DH), at Tampa, Fla., 11 a.m.
Sat. 19 – Harvard, at Tampa, Fla., 11 a.m.
Wed. 23 – Columbia, 3:30 p.m.
Fri. 25 – Seton Hall (DH), 3 p.m.
Sat. 26 – at Seton Hall, 2 p.m.
Tues. 29 – Siena, 3 p.m.
April
Sat. 2 – Lafayette* (DH), 12 p.m.
Sun. 3 – Lafayette* (DH), 12 p.m.
Tues. 5 – U.Mass Lowell, 7 p.m.
Sat. 9 – Bucknell* (DH), 12 p.m.
Sun. 10 – Bucknell* (DH), 12 p.m.
Tues. 12 – Manhattan, 7 p.m.
Sat. 16 – at Holy Cross* (DH), 12 p.m.
Sun. 17 – at Holy Cross* (DH), 1 p.m.
Wed. 20 – at New York Tech, 3:30 p.m.
Sat. 23 – at Navy* (DH), 12 p.m.
Sun. 24 – at Navy* (DH), 1 p.m.
Wed. 27 – Marist, at Fishkill, 6:30 p.m.
Sat. 30 – Lehigh* (DH), 12 p.m.
May
Sun. 1 – Lehigh* (DH), 1 p.m.
Sat. 7 – at Hartford (DH), 12 p.m.
Sun. 8 – at Hartford, 2 p.m.
Home games played at Doubleday Field, West Point; * – indicates Patriot League game; all home games and Navy road series on WBNR (1260-AM) and WLNA (1420-AM)

Army baseball roster
Seniors (9) – No. 1 Garrison Franklin, RHP; No. 9 Ben Smith, C; No. 10 Justin Reece, IF; No. 14 Jack Verrill, RHP; No. 15 Patrick Gardner, LHP; No. 17 Justin French, RHP; No. 23 Jacob Page, OF; No. 25 Ryan Levenhagen, 1B; No. 26 Brock Davidson, LHP/1B
Juniors (5) – No. 8 Kris Lindner, SS; No. 13 David Monge, IF; No. 24 Carson Meadows, LHP; No. 35 Baggio Saldivar, C; No. 40 Alex Dickerson, OF/1B
Sophomores (9) – No. 4 Brandon Lee, OF; No. 11 John McCarthy, OF/1B; No. 18 Jeremy Mortensen, LHP; No. 22 Greg Carter, OF; No. 30 Jake Clark, IF; No. 31 Stu Schley, RHP/IF; No. 32 Jon Rosoff, IF/C; No. 34 Matt Ball, RHP; No. 44 Keegan Vega, C
Freshmen (12) – No. 2 Trey Martin, IF; No. 3 Josh White, IF; No. 5 Matt Hudgins, OF; No. 7 Sam Messina, RHP; No. 12 Jacob Carte, RHP/OF; No. 16 Eamon Hannan, RHP/IF; No. 19 Cam Opp, LHP; No. 27 Will Dunavant, C/OF; No. 28 Tyler Giovinco, LHP; No. 33 Daniel Burggraaf, RHP; No. 36 Mike Gagliardi, RHP; No. 38 William Ikerd, C
Head coach – Matt Reid
Assistants – Anthony DeCicco; Tyler Cannon; Lt. Col. Dave Borowicz

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Former players pay tribute to the late Jack Riley

The passing of Army hockey coach Jack Riley will surely be discussed as former players gather for his funeral services, as well as this weekend’s ceremony celebrating the careers of past greats Dave Merhar, George Clark and Dave Rost.
When Jack Riley was honored in 2007, a host of players spoke with me about their legendary coach. Here are some of their thoughts:
“When you could understand Jack’s strategy, his game plan and how it worked, it was amazing what you could accomplish. It wasn’t complex, he didn’t have an elaborate game plan, but it was basic hockey and he expected it to be performed flawlessly.’’
Brian Concannon, Class of 1979
Norwell, Mass.

“I was extremely respectful of his coaching and pretty much in awe of what he had accomplished and could accomplish. I was very much in admiration of him and honored to play for him.’’
Parker “Brick” Anderson, Class of 1967
Santa Barbara, Calif. (originally Roseville, Minn.)

“Coach Riley was a true motivator. He continuously challenged each individual, each of us to elevate our game to the next level, in a very passionate way. It was tough when you needed it to be tough but there was a degree of empathy when that was needed as well.’’
Ted Moran, Class of 1986
Nashua, N.H.

“He was absolutely animated. He broke his leg one year – it was at home and he had crutches on the bench. The ref made a bad call and one or two of those crutches was on the ice. That just demonstrated his passion to me.’’
Lt. Col. Chris Rizzo, Class of 1984
Fort Jackson, S.C.

“He was tough on us but he never was unfair. If you had it coming, he gave it to you and you understood that and respected that, but in the end he helped us through a tough situation at the academy. I think we all look back on that and are very thankful.’’
Tyler King, Class of 1984

“I loved to be on a road trip with coach. I would sit on the first step of the bus; he always had the front seat. We would talk about what happened on the weekend. … It was just listening to him talk hockey – the guy had a wealth of experience. He talked about his pilot days back in World War II. I could have played on the road all year and I wouldn’t have minded a bit. … He walked on water for me.’’
Dave Rost, Class of 1977
Grand Rapids, Mich. (formerly Buffalo)

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    Ken McMillan

    Ken McMillan has been covering sports since he got his first writing job in 1979. He has covered Section 9 athletics for the past 34 years. He reports on college sports, including Army and Marist College. He also writes on TV/radio sports news, ... Read Full
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