Athletic Teams Own the Weekend
It was a winning weekend for three of St. John Fisher College’s athletic teams, as men’s track and field, women’s lacrosse, and softball teams all took home Empire 8 Championships.
Track and Field Races to the Tops
On Saturday, May 5, the men’s track and field team posted a big performance, starting the day with a first place lead. At the completion of the meet, Peter Girardi was named Track Athlete of the Meet while Mark VanMarter took home Field Athlete of the Meet honors.
Girardi had a huge meet for the Cardinals with three first place finishes; setting a new facility record for the Polisseni Track and Field Complex in the 400-meter dash after he clocked in at a whopping 47.98 seconds. The Cicero native also took first place in the 110- and 400-meter hurdles with times of 14.35 and 54.51 seconds.
Hurdles turned out to be huge events for the Cardinals, as Fisher athletes took first, second, and third place in the 110- and 400-meter hurdles. For 110-meter hurdles, Eddie Mahana took second place and Kyle Rollins took third. Mahana took second in the 400-meter hurdles event, with Jack Behlmaier taking third place.
Senior James Felice gave Fisher the first place finish in the 1,500 meter race after he clocked in at an impressive 4:02.97. Mac Milligan nabbed the first place finish in the 5,000 meter race with a seething time of 15:55.48. The Cardinals team of Mahana, Girardi, Behlmaier, and Zak Kennedy came in second place in the 4X400 meter relay race.
When it came to field events, Kyle Rollins shined for the Cardinals. The freshman earned first place in the high jump with an astounding 2.01 meter leap. VanMarter took the number two spot in the triple jump.
Softball Repeats as Empire 8 Champs
For the second consecutive year, the nationally-ranked and top-seeded St. John Fisher College softball team came out on top as the Cardinals defeated Utica College on Sunday, May 5, to claim the Empire 8 Championship and the Conference’s automatic berth into the NCAA Division III Softball Championship.
With the win, Fisher, which will head into NCAAs riding a 15-game winning streak, improved to 30-7 on the season. They beat Utica 12-1 in five innings to capture the title; the sixth Empire 8 Championship in program history.
Sarah Kubik was named the Championship’s Most Valuable Player after the Orchard Park native combined to go 3-for-5 with two home runs, five RBI, four runs scored, and three walks over three games.
Senior pitcher Lindsey Thayer moved to 20-3 in the circle after holding the Pioneers scoreless over five innings of work. Thayer surrendered just one hit on the day and finished with five strikeouts overall. Thayer has now authored 1,455 career strikeouts and sits just three shy of breaking the all-time Division III mark for career strikeouts. Katie Mazierski, who had one hit in two at-bats, moved to within two hits of breaking the Empire 8 record for career hits.
Lucky No. 7 for Women’s Lacrosse
For the seventh consecutive season, the nationally-ranked St. John Fisher College women’s lacrosse team has won the Empire 8 Conference Championship, after defeating the number one-seeded Stevens Institute of Technology in the championship game 14-6.
Fisher earns the Conference’s automatic berth into the NCAA Division III Women’s Lacrosse Championship with its ninth conference crown in program history. With the win, the No. 20 Cardinals increase their win-streak to 12 games, and improve their record to 17-2 overall on the season, tying the most wins in a single season since the 2016 season.
This will be the team’s seventh straight appearance and the ninth overall time the women’s lacrosse team will play for a NCAA Championship.
Claire Bollin was named the Empire 8 Championship’s Most Valuable Player after the senior made contributions all over the field during the weekend, totaling four goals, three assists, eight ground balls, four caused turnovers, and 16 draw controls.