Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Posted by Jason Knavel at 11:23 AM
This week’s been an interesting and exciting week for the sports I work with on a daily basis – men’s basketball, volleyball, and softball. For men’s basketball and volleyball, the Stroh Center Topping Off Ceremony took place Monday evening. As well, the men’s basketball program announced the addition of two student-athletes for next year. For softball, I’ve been working on nominations for All-MAC and preparing for the final week of the regular season. Just thought I’d pass on a few of my thoughts.
1 – We’ve had a lot of great freshmen performances this year (a couple off the top of my head are Jordan Samuels-Thomas and Susy Grunden), but I’m not sure any of those top what Paige Berger is doing in softball. Paige has already broken the program’s single-season home run record with 12 and ranks 16th nationally in homers per game. She is on pace to shatter the program’s single season slugging percentage record as she currently is slugging .800. And she’s pretty much dominating the MAC individually. In conference games, she leads the league in batting average, slugging percentage, on-base percentage, home runs, and RBI. It’s going to be interesting to see her develop over the next few years.
2 – Speaking of softball, things are going to be really interesting this weekend. Eight teams make the MAC Tournament and the Falcons are tied with Akron for seventh place in the league, just one game ahead of three other teams. In fact, BGSU plays one of those teams Friday when the Falcons are at Buffalo for a key doubleheader. The Falcons then finish the regular season at Kent State before hopefully competing in the MAC Tournament.
3 – I had a great time at the Stroh Center “Topping Off” Ceremony Monday evening. One of my favorite parts was getting to walk through the arena afterwards. You can really get a feel for what the building is going to be like and it’s going to be cozy in there. A lot of newer arenas lose a bit of the home-court advantage because of sheer size but that won’t be the case in the Stroh. I can’t wait for those first games in the new building.
4 – I’m excited about the 2010-11 men’s basketball recruiting class. As Coach Orr likes to say, this team’s DNA is built around a strong post presence offensively and defensively and it’s going to be hard to replace the three-headed monster inside of Otis Polk, Erik Marschall and Marc Larson. But an increased scoring punch and athleticism is something the team badly needs and it seems like Coach Orr, Coach Stone, Coach Twigg, and Coach Hopson addressed those needs in a big way.