Vassar Today

Fall Sports Wrap-Up

By Michael Levin, sports information director

Half Makes Rugby Whole

Vassar’s women’s rugby clinched its fifth-consecutive Metropolitan New York Division I title and advanced to the Northeast Rugby Union’s final four for the third time in five seasons. "We had a great team dynamic and, of course, good coaching," said Julie Half ’03. Half led the team in scoring with 55 points off 11 tries. Julia Rosen ’03 hit 19 conversions to finish with 43 points. Vassar rolled through the regular season with the A-side limiting opponents to just 23 points in nine matches. The Brewers twice edged Columbia, once in the regular season, 8-7, and then again for the division title, 7-0.

Money Runs in Path Blazed by Hull

First there was Troy Hull ’02, who captured the UCAA men’s cross-country individual championship in 1999. Two years later, his roommate Steve Money ’03 turned the same feat at UCAA. Money opened the 2001 season with the Vassar Invitational championship with the third-fastest time in course history.

Troy Hull
Troy Hull

"[Hull, above] showed me that Vassar could compete with the rest of the conference," said Money.

The junior from Wilbraham, MA, was named the conference’s Runner of the Year, selected to the all-conference list, and was again tabbed academic all-conference. During the campaign, he was a three-time UCAA men’s cross-country performer of the week and was recognized by the ECAC. While cross-country may be an individual sport, Money spread the credit for his success to teammates Hull, Andrew Costigan ’02, and Kendall Manlove ’02.

Women’s Volleyball Wraps Up Most Successful Season

Early on, McKenzie Johnson ’04 and Ashley Manlove ’04 knew that this year’s women’s volleyball was special. It began slowly with a second-place showing at the VC Invitational. A week later, Vassar’s quiet victory in Hartwick College’s Blue & White Classic was enough to convince Manlove. "I thought, ‘Wow! We’re a really good team,’" the setter said.


Johnson (above), a sophomore from Pheonix, AZ, along with Manlove, a sophomore from Garrettsville, OH, delivered impressive stats this season.

The Brewers then went on to a regional ranking, fifth-place showing at the New York State Women’s Collegiate Athletic Association, and built up a head of steam going into the UCAA Championship.

Thanks to the play of two-time, all-conference selections Johnson and Lauren Nishimura ’02, along with Manlove — Vassar clinched the school’s first UCAA team championship. In the Division III playoffs, Vassar opened with its third-consecutive victory over Skidmore before bowing to eventual regional champions Nazareth College. Coaches Jonathan Penn and Antonia Sweet were named UCAA Coaching Staff of the Year for guiding the Brewers to a 20-12 record along with the UCAA title.

With Manlove and Johnson returning next year, Vassar could replicate the successful 2001 campaign. "We have a great chemistry," said Johnson.

Season Stats

Women’s Cross-Country
Fourth, UCAA Championship

Lucy Amory ’05 received All-Upstate Collegiate Athletic Association honors, with her 10th-place finish at the conference championship, and a 17th-place showing at the NCAA regional championship. The Brewers took top team honors at the Halloween Invitational.

Field Hockey
(7-10 overall, 1-6 UCAA0)

Vassar qualified for its second-consecutive postseason trip to the UCAA championships. Individually, Valerie Porter ’02 collected postseason accolades including first-team All-UCAA, second-team All-ECAC, and third-team All-NYS Women’s Collegiate Athletic Association.

Men’s Rugby
(3-5 overall, 3-3 Metro. NY)

Vassar’s A-side knocked off eventual conference champion U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, with the B-team topping the Mariners. The A-squad made its second-consecutive appearance in the Metropolitan New York playoffs.

Men’s Soccer
(4-11 overall, 0-7 UCAA)

Vassar won four-of-seven matches contested at the Prentiss pitch, outscoring opponents, 22-5. Joseph Petruccelli ’04 led the team in scoring, with five goals, and in points, with 13.

Women’s Soccer
(10-11 overall, 2-5 UCAA)

The Brewers qualified for their fifth ECAC championship in six seasons. Vassar finished third in the NYS championship, its best finish in four seasons. Sarah Combs ’05 was a second-team All-UCAA selection along with Cheryl Crow ’04 and Elizabeth Keehner ’04.

Men’s Tennis
(0-2 overall)

Vassar posted its best finish at the school-hosted ECAC North Championship, taking seventh. Pouya Rebek ’05 and Davis Rhodes ’05 both advanced to the quarterfinals in the No. 5 and No. 3 singles flights, respectively.

Women’s Tennis
(6-2 overall)

The Brewers concluded the fall season with a No. 28 ranking in the national poll and held the ninth spot in the regional poll. Individually, Alexis Neider ’03 ranked No. 17 in the region, and No. 11 along with partner Jessica Shofler ’04, in the doubles poll. The team took second at the UCAA and NYS WCAA championships.

Photo by Carlisle Stockton