The Collegian
Saturday, February 24, 2024

Spider Sports Recap | Week of Feb. 24

<p>Redshirt junior guard Blake Francis looks to make a pass during the Feb. 29 game against University of Massachusetts Amherst. <em>Photo courtesy of the Spider Athletics Instagram page</em></p>

Redshirt junior guard Blake Francis looks to make a pass during the Feb. 29 game against University of Massachusetts Amherst. Photo courtesy of the Spider Athletics Instagram page


Feb. 25: Loss 1-11 vs. Coppin State University

The University of Richmond baseball team lost 11-1 vs. the Coppin State Eagles, moving the Spiders to 2-6 on the season. Despite the loss, first-year Jeremy Neff had a strong performance in his second career start, striking out nine batters in 5.1 innings. The Spiders managed to get ahead early with an unearned run in the first inning. This came from a grounder by redshirt junior Drew Blakely, which was mishandled by the Coppin State outfield resulting in junior Jordan Schulefand scoring from second. A two-run home run from the Eagles in the top of the sixth put them ahead of the Spiders 2-1. The Eagles would go on to score nine more runs, six of which came in the ninth inning.

Feb. 28: Loss 8-11 vs. Georgetown University

The baseball team lost in extra innings to the Georgetown Hoyas 11-8 in the first game of the Central Virginia Classic. The Spiders started the game off strong, scoring six runs in the first inning. Junior Dominic Toso batted in the first two runs of the game off a double with runners at second and third. Redshirt junior Tim Miller would start the on the mound and throw two scoreless innings before allowing five earned runs in the third. Miller struck out five batters while only allowing four hits. The teams would then go back and forth, eventually tying at seven going into the tenth inning. The Hoyas then hit a grand slam in the top of the inning, putting them ahead 11-7. The Spiders finished the game with 12 hits which included a pair of four-hit performances by graduate student Dan Leckie and first-year Alden Mathes. 

Feb. 29: Loss 6-9 vs. Wagner College

The baseball team lost 9-6 to the Wagner Seahawks in the second game of the Central Virginia Classic. In the bottom of the first, with runners at first and third, Toso batted in the first run of the game to give Richmond an early lead. The Spiders scored four runs in the first inning, but the Seahawks rallied to tie the game with four runs in the top of the second inning. The teams would go back and forth scoring runs eventually ending with the Seahawks up three 9-6. Redshirt sophomore Collin Lowe started on the mound for Richmond and pitched six innings. He allowed six hits, four earned runs and struck out for six. Toso hit his team-high third home run in the third inning. Mathes hit his first career home run in the 6th inning. 

Mar. 1: Loss 1-13 vs. West Virginia University 

The baseball team lost 13-1 to the West Virginia Mountaineers in the final game of the Central Virginia Classic. Sophomore Jacob Marcus got the start for the Spiders and pitched 5.2 innings. Marcus allowed seven earned runs and struck out three batters. West Virginia dominated the game from its beginning to its end. The Mountaineers managed to score 13 runs, four of which came in the first inning. The Richmond offense managed to get just four hits in the game, with the one RBI coming from Toso. The loss moves the team to 2-9 in the season.

Women’s Lacrosse

Feb. 26: Win 13-12 at University of Virginia

The Richmond Spiders women’s lacrosse team defeated the No. 6 University of Virginia Cavaliers 13-12 in the final seconds of overtime. The win was the team’s first against a top-10 opponent since 2006. The Spiders started strong, finishing the first half up 7-4 with goals from five different players. The Cavaliers slowly came back before taking the lead with 1:51 left in the game. Redshirt junior Sam Geiersbach then scored with under a minute left in regulation to send the game to overtime. In overtime, first-year Lindsey Frank scored the game-winning goal with six seconds left. Frank, Geiersbach and senior Madison Ostrick all led the team with three goals each. 

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Feb. 29: Win 18-9 vs. Liberty

The women’s lacrosse team continued its best start in program history with an 18-9 win over the Liberty Flames this past Saturday. The win puts the team at 6-0 for the season. The Spiders controlled the game from the beginning to the end, never allowing the Flames to lead. First-year Arden Tierney led the team in goals with four and draw controls with 11. Although winning by nine goals, Richmond was still outshot by Liberty 29-28. A great performance by senior goalie Megan Gianforte allowed the Spiders to win comfortably, despite the shot difference. Gianforte finished with 14 saves and a team-high four ground balls. 

Women’s Basketball

Feb. 26: Loss 57-60 vs. Saint Louis University

On its senior night, the women’s basketball team lost in heartbreaking fashion to the Saint Louis Billikens. The team held a one-point lead with 16 seconds left, 57-56. Saint Louis made two free throws to take a one-point lead, 58-57. The Spiders then failed to score in the time that remained while the Billikens added on two more free throws to make the final score 60-57. Senior Jaide Hinds-Clarke led the team in points with 20, her third-consecutive game with at least 20 points. She tied with sophomore Kate Klimkiewicz for the team-lead in rebounds, each with five. Klimkiewicz was the second-highest scorer, with nine points. The loss moves the team to 14-15 overall and 7-8 in Atlantic-10 play.

Feb. 29: Loss 40-50 at George Washington University

In its final A-10 regular season game, the women’s basketball team lost to the George Washington Colonials 50-40. The team was held to a season-low 40 points in the contest against the Colonials. Hinds-Clarke led the team in points with nine. At halftime, the Spiders were winning by one point. A big third quarter by George Washington, however, allowed the Colonials to pull away. Klimkiewicz finished with five points and a team-high nine rebounds. The team will head into the A-10 tournament with a 7-9 in conference record and a 14-16 overall record.

Men’s Basketball

Feb 26: Win 73-70 vs. George Washington University

Following a tough loss at St. Bonaventure University, the Richmond Spiders men’s basketball team beat the George Washington Colonials 73-70. Despite its sub-.500 record, George Washington managed to stay close with the Spiders all game long. Richmond went into the half up by only one point. In the beginning of the second half, the Spiders started off hot, taking a nine-point lead, 41-32. The Colonials came back late in the half and were down by six points with 21 seconds left. First-year Tyler Burton fouled Maceo Jack on his three-point attempt with 13 seconds left. He made all three of his free throws, making it a one-possession game, 73-70. George Washington intentionally fouled redshirt junior Blake Francis, who missed both of his free throws. The Colonials failed to tie the game with the little amount of time they had left, rewarding the Spiders with a win despite the late-game scare. Francis finished with a game-high 19 points. Redshirt junior Grant Golden finished with seven rebounds and a career-high eight assists. Junior Nathan Cayo finished with a team-high nine assists. 

Feb 29: Win 95-71 vs. University of Massachusetts Amherst

The men’s basketball team dominated the UMass Minutemen in its second-to-last game at the Robins Center this season. The team seemed unstoppable on the offensive end during all stages of the game, finishing with 95 points. The Spiders finished the game with five players scoring in double digits. Francis finished with a team-high 20 points. Golden was one rebound short of a double-double, finishing with 13 points and nine rebounds. The Naismith Defensive Player of the Year semifinalist, junior Jacob Gilyard, continued to show why he leads the country in steals, recording four of them. The team moves to 22-7 as it heads into its final two games of the regular season. 

Women’s Swimming and Diving

Feb. 28- Mar. 1: Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference’s Last Chance Meet, Annapolis, Maryland

Feb. 28:

Four members of the women's swimming and diving team competed at the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference’s Last Chance Meet this weekend. Sophomore Maggie Purcell, senior Eliza Manning, senior Hannah Gouger and senior Lexie Gilbert competed in several races, attempting to earn qualifying times for postseason meets. During Friday's preliminary round, Purcell had the fastest time for the Spiders, recording a personal-best time of 23.52 in the 50-meter and finishing second. Manning earned a season-best time for herself with a time of 23.84 while also finishing in a three-way tie for sixth. In the final, Purcell took fourth place with a time of 23.59 while Manning took fifth with a time of 23.62.

Feb. 29:

On Saturday, Manning finished with a top spot in the B final of the 100-yard butterfly. She recorded a time of 55.79 and finished ninth overall. In the 100-yard breaststroke, Purcell would record the team’s top time of the season with a 1:03.15 and finished in third place. In the same event, Gilbert finished in 11th with a time of 1:04.97. The best performance of the night came from Gouger, who set a new ECAC meet record in the 100-yard backstroke, finishing with a time of 53.39. The time not only earned her first place, but also an NCAA B cut time.

Mar. 1:

Gouger would continue her dominant performance on Sunday as she finished first in the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 1:56.55. The time earned her another NCAA B cut time. Manning finished in second place in the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 51.00. Gouger wasn’t the only Spider to earn an NCAA B cut time over the weekend, as Purcell did so too in the 200-yard breaststroke. She finished in first place with a time of 2:15.06. Gilbert finished in fourth of the same event with a time of 2:19.45. After several Spiders earned NCAA B cut times in this tournament, the team will now have to wait and see which swimmers will qualify for the NCAA championships or the NIC Championships. 

Men’s Tennis

Feb. 28: Win 5-2 vs. The Citadel 

The men’s tennis team defeated the Citadel Bulldogs 5-2 on Friday, improving to 4-5 in the season. The Spiders started off the day winning all three of their doubles matches, with the first one coming from the No. 2 doubles, senior Klein Evans and sophomore Campbell Erwin. The Spiders won four of their six singles matches, which included first-year Nick Mueller’s first-ever collegiate win, 7-6, 7-5, at the No. 6 singles spot. Senior Matt Fernandez won 7-5, 6-3 in the No. 1 singles match. A second match against the Citadel was planned to be played but was canceled due to the length of the first match. The team goes on the road against Elon University Saturday, March 7. 

Men’s Lacrosse

Feb. 28: Loss 15-16 at Duke University

The No. 20 men’s lacrosse team lost 16-15 to the No. 13 Duke Blue Devils in overtime. The Spiders started off the game hot and were up 6-3 after the first quarter, including two goals from redshirt senior Adrian Nash. Duke took control of the game for the two next quarters, heading into the fourth quarter up 14-10. The Spiders scored five goals in the fourth quarter while the Blue Devils scored one to make the game 15-15 at the end of the regulation. After winning the opening faceoff in overtime, Duke was able to get past Richmond's defense and redshirt junior goalie Jack Rusbuldt. This was the team's third loss to a ranked opponent this season, and its record now stands at 2-3. 

Women’s Track and Field

Feb. 29- Mar. 1: Atlantic 10 Conference Championships

Feb. 29: 

After the first day of the A-10 Conference Championships, the women’s track and field team was in fourth place with 21 points. The distance medley relay team of first-year Lily Snow, sophomore Rachel Helbling, first-year Kate McAndrew and senior Claire Brown won the race with a time of 11:47.39. This is the fourth-straight year the Spiders have won this event. Sophomore Kayla Woods also won her event for Richmond in the long jump with a personal best distance of 5.91 meters. Junior Caroline Robelen finished eighth in the 5000-meters with a time of 17:29.97. 

Mar. 1:

After a strong performance on the first day of the conference championships, the team managed to reach the podium several more times, and was fifth overall with a total of 84 points. Junior Brooke Fazio ran a season-best time in the 800-meter race with a time of 2:06.39. This time also set a new A-10 Championship Meet and URI Mackal Field House record. In the same event, senior Maria Acosta finished fourth with a time of 2:13.36. The two runners, along with sophomore Kendra Smither and Brown, also set a new record in the meet and facility in the 4x800-meter relay with a time of 8:59.91. First-year Kamryn Ross lowered her Richmond program record in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 8.63. She placed second in this event. 

Contact sports writer Krystian Hajduczka at

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