BTW, we’re coming to the point of the year where all the sports are slowly coming to an end. It really wouldn’t have been a problem if a) the baseball team made the NCAA tournament, b) the softball team got back to the College World Series and c) football was a year round sport. So without further ado …
*Leading Off…Another Crew Team Fails For National Title*
The men’s crew team failed to repeat as national champs, finishing 26 points behind Washington for the national title.
It sucked that the varsity eight failed to win its race, pretty much derailing any chance for Cal to win the national title.
But overall, the team did well, sending all of its boats to their respective grand finals. No other school did that. The squad also took home three individual titles.
It’s the biggest story of the weekend.
*Track Coach Quits*
Chris Huffins resigned last week, effective after this week’s NCAA championships.
Why he was outed, we really won’t know. But the Chron reports that he left his post among criticisms of his management style.
But what we don’t get is if he has gotten more athletes to regional and NCAA championship meets in the last five years than any other coach in more than a decade, why would anyone care about his management style? He’s been successful.
*Women’s Tennis Coach Retires*
Jan Brogan leaves Cal after almost three decades of coaching.
But why? She just got the Bears to the NCAA semis. Just one more step and she’ll have a team championship, something that has eluded her for 29 years.
_1) John Mann – men’s water polo_
The Heisman Trophy of water polo is named after the winningest coach in Cal history, Pete Cutino. No Bears player has ever won the award until now. Good job, John Mann.
_2-4) The Varsity Four, Freshman Four and Freshman Eight – men’s crew_
National champs. ‘Nuff said.
*Leading Off…No Postseason For Cal, Again*
The Cal baseball team was the ultimate bubble team for a berth to the NCAA tournament. Heading up to Seattle for the last series of the regular season, the Bears probably needed to win two of three games to possibly nab a postseason berth.
They didn’t. Instead Esquer’s Bears’ miracle run at the end of the season ended in dismay, with Cal losing two of three to Washington. Even worse is that our friends at UCLA were probably the last Pac-10 team selected to the tournament, with a 30-26 record.
What’s our Bears’ record you ask? 29-26. Ouch. Let’s make that six straight seasons that Cal hasn’t made the postseason.
*Slow Start Dooms Bears*
We’re going to try to explain to you why the women’s crew team failed to three-peat as NCAA champions this year.
1) There are three boats at the NCAA regatta.
2) The varsity eight boat is considered the best boat and its grand final race is given three-times as many points as any of the other grand finals.
3) Cal’s varsity eight boat failed to even reach the semifinals of the event.
4) The second varsity eight boat and the varsity four boat both did pretty well in their respective events.
5) No varsity eight boat in the final means you’re not going to win the NCAA title, no matter how well the other boats did.
*Tennis Players Fall at Individual NCAAs*
Susie Babos was the defending NCAA singles champ. Keyword in that sentence is WAS. Babos was ousted in the second-round in her bid as a repeat champion. The other Bears in the singles draw lost in the round of 16.
Babos’s second round troubles didn’t end there, losing in the second round of the doubles bracket with teammate Zsuzsanna Fodor.
Wow, for a team that made the NCAA semis last weekend, all that most of these ladies could muster was a berth to the round of 16? What happened? Maybe their lone male counterpart can do better?
On the men’s side Pierre Mouillon was also given an early exit in the second round.
Well, at least we don’t have to talk about tennis for awhile.
1) Alysia Johnson – Track and Field
This sounds like a broken record, but Johnson just broke another record at the NCAA West Regional. Cal -female- athlete of the year? We’d say so.
2) Ed Wright – Track and Field
Along with Johnson, won Cal’s only two individual titles at the NCAA West Regional.
3) The other 11 track and field athletes who qualified for the NCAAs over the weekend. At least one team fared well.
*Leading Off…How Sweet It Is*
The Cal women’s tennis team is through to the round of 16 after knocking of Southeastern Louisiana and Arizona State over the weekend at the Hellman Tennis Center.
It should have been that way. Who are the Lions anyway? They’re from No-where, Louisiana. Oh, and the Sun Devils? The Bears knocked them off twice during the regular season.
Easy rolling to the sweet 16 if you ask us.
*Not So Sweet*
The men’s tennis team didn’t fare as well as their female counterparts, losing in the first round to Oklahoma. It was a pretty close one, with the Bears losing 4-3.
It was also Cal’s first first-round loss since 2000, and it was a bitter way to end the season after roaring back at the end there.
Still, most of the season was ho-hum anyway.
*No Pac-10 Crowns This Time*
After the men’s and women’s crew teams won Pac-10 championships last year, both fell to rivals in this year’s edition.
The women’s crew lost its conference crown (for the first time in four years) to USuC. When you don’t advance to the grand final in two of the four events, you’re going to be pretty hard pressed to win a meet.
On the men’s side, all they needed to do was beat Washington in the final race to capture their third straight Pac-10 crown. They lost and were knocked off their pedestal.
*fUCLA Wins 100th Team Championship*
The Baby Bears won the women’s water polo national championship over the weekend, giving fUCLA 100 NCAA team titles.
Last week, we asked a simple question: Can the W’s use their athleticism to beat the Utah Jazz the same way they did against Dallas?
For one game, Golden State in fact was able to do that. But for the rest of the series for the Warriors, the team misses free throws, has horrible shot attempts and just runs out of gas near the end of the games.
Game 5 is going to be tough in the SLC.
_1) Alysia Johnson – track & field_
Racking up the hardware won the Pac-10 crown in the 800-meter
_2) Ed Wright – track & field_
Took home the Pac-10 crown in the high jump
_3) Jill Malko – lacrosse coach_
Truly one of the better coaches on campus and one of the better people at Cal. She put in a lot of effort her nine years at the helm.