This Week in Tufts Athletics: March 4 - 10

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When: Sunday vs. Williams at New England Baseball Complex (Northborough, MA), 1 pm
What You Need to Know: The Jumbos open their season earlier than usual thanks to the turf field at the New England Baseball Complex where Tufts and the Ephs will get 2019 started. It’s a non-divisional match-up which won’t count towards the Jumbos’ conference record, whereas Tufts is in the NESCAC EASt and Williams is aligned in the West. Head coach John Casey’s team played in the conference championship game for the third straight year and 11th time overall last season (more than any other team in the league). Tufts won its fifth straight NESCAC East pennant and 10th overall in 2018, finishing 8-4 in the division (20-17 overall). Senior pitcher R.J. Hall was a All-Conference first team selection a year ago. Williams was fourth in the NESCAC West last year (9-21, 4-8 NESCAC West).

Women’s Basketball

When: Friday and Saturday NCAA Sectional at Scranton (Pa.), 5 pm and 6 pm
What You Need to Know: Tufts advanced to its eighth straight NCAA Tournament “Sweet 16” and will travel to the University of Scranton for a game Friday night against Messiah. If the Jumbos win that contest, they will play either the host Lady Royals or Christopher Newport University (CNU) in the “Elite 8” on Saturday. The winner moves on to the “Final Four” in Salem, Virginia March 15-16. Head coach Carla Berube’s team will be looking to reach their fifth “Final Four.” First they must deal with a Messiah team that brings a 28-1 record into Friday’s game. The Falcons lost their season-opener, but have won 28 straight games since. Host Scranton is 27-2 overall and CNU is 25-5. The Jumbos have twice before played in Sectionals at Scranton, winning and advancing to the “Final Four” in 2016 and losing in the “Elite 8” last year. 

Women’s Fencing

When: Sunday NCAA Northeast Regionals at Vassar, 9 am
What You Need to Know: Six Jumbos will travel to Poughkeepsie, New York for the 2019 NCAA Northeast Regionals on Sunday. Unlike the rest of their season which focuses on team competition, the Regional is strictly an individual contest. Competing for Tufts will be senior co-captain Zoe Howard and freshman Allison Cheng in foil, freshman Hannah Fruitman in epee and sophomore Lillie Ahearn, sophomore Subin Jeong and junior Elliot Pavlovich in sabre. Howard is making her third Regional appearance for Tufts, and Pavlovich will be there for the second time. The others are making their maiden NCAA Regional voyage. Howard advanced to the third round of the foil competition in last year’s Regional at Brandeis. Cheng was one of the top foil fencers in New England this winter with an 83.3 winning percentage. 

Men’s Lacrosse

When: Tuesday vs. Keene State, 5 pm and Saturday at Stevens, 12 pm
What You Need to Know: After sweeping their season-opening weekend at Hamilton and at Cortland, the Jumbos will start their home schedule on Tuesday at Bello Field before returning to the road for a game in New Jersey on Saturday. Keene State (0-2) is the five-time defending Little East Conference champions who are common non-league opponents for the Jumbos. Tufts won last year’s game 24-10 and has scored more than 20 goals in their previous five games against the Owls.  Saturday’s game will be a match-up of top 10 teams in the USILA poll as the fourth-ranked Jumbos face #9 Stevens Institute of Technology (3-0). Tufts won last year’s game 16-7 against a Ducks team that went on to win the Empire 8 Conference and finish with an 18-3 mark. 

Women’s Lacrosse

When: Wednesday at MIT, 5 pm and Saturday at Wellesley, 12 pm
What You Need to Know: The 10th-ranked Jumbos are road warriors to start their season. After opening the year with an 18-11 win at Hamilton College on Saturday, Tufts travels to Greater Boston foes MIT and Wellesley College this week. Both of these contests were convincing victories for Tufts last season as the Jumbos topped MIT 21-10 and Wellesley 26-5 at home on Bello Field. The Engineers (11-6 in 2018) are 1-0 this season after opening with a 14-9 victory over Keene State. Wellesley has a busy three-game week with contests against UMass Dartmouth and Eastern Connecticut preceding their game against the Jumbos on Saturday. The Blue were just 2-14 a year ago. The Jumbos won't play at home in 2019 until a week from Saturday (Mar. 16) against Colby College.

Hiroto Watanabe will run for his third straight All-American honor in the 800 meters at the NCAA Indoor Championships in Boston this weekend.

Men’s Tennis

When: Saturday at Brandeis (Natick Racquet Club), 3:30 pm
What You Need to Know: Though Greater Boston was just hit with one of its biggest snowfalls of the year, the spring sports seasons are undaunted thanks to turf fields and indoor tennis courts. After an exciting fall season of singles and doubles play, Tufts will begin its team schedule this week with an intriguing local match-up. The Jumbos are ranked #22 in the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) national poll while Brandeis is at #10. The Judges are sixth and Tufts is eighth in the region. Tufts sophomore Boris Sorkin won the ITA Cup singles national championship in the fall and earned the #1 singles player in the nation ranking because of it. The Judges have the 11th ranked doubles tandem in the country with Adam Tzeng and Jackson Kogan. The teams did not play last year, but Tufts won 6-3 when they met in 2017.

Women’s Tennis

When: Saturday at Trinity, 10:30 am
What You Need to Know: Like the men’s team, Tufts Women’s Tennis will “warm up” for its forthcoming spring trip schedule with an indoors match this week. Except for the women it’s a NESCAC contest against Trinity College at which the Jumbos will need to immediately begin working on their conference tournament resume. The Jumbos had little difficulty with the Bantams last season, winning 9-0 at home. Tufts, which finished 13-7 and advanced to the NCAA Regional final last spring, opens the spring ranked seventh in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association national poll and fifth regionally. The Bantams, who are at #38 nationally, are unranked in the region. Tufts freshman Caroline Garrido received the #31 national singles rankings after her play in the fall. 

Men’s Track and Field

When: Friday and Saturday NCAA Championships at Reggie Lewis Center (Boston), 10 am and 10 am
What You Need to Know: Three Jumbo seniors will take the short trip into Boston to compete at the NCAA Division III Championships this weekend. Josh Etkind will compete in the 60-meter hurdles preliminaries on Friday at 2:15 pm, Colin Raposo runs in the mile prelims Friday at 5:20 pm and Hiroto Watanabe goes in the 800-meters trials at 6:35 pm Friday. The Jumbos will need to advance to Saturday’s finals, for which the hurdles is at 1:55 pm, the mile is at 3:15 pm and the 800 is at 4:05 pm. Watanabe is a two-time All-American in the 800, while Raposo ran with the All-American distance medley relay last year and Etkind was an outdoor (110-meter hurdles) All-American in 2017. The Jumbos are seeking their third straight top 20 NCAA finish as a team and fifth in the last six seasons. 

Women’s Track and Field

When: Friday and Saturday NCAA Championships at Reggie Lewis Center (Boston), 10 am and 10 am
What You Need to Know: Senior co-captain Kelsey Tierney and junior Rhemi Toth will represent Tufts at the NCAA Championship meet in Boston this weekend. Both are first-time individual qualifiers for the NCAA Track Championships, though Tierney has run at the NCAA Cross Country race three straight years and Toth was a part of the Jumbos’ distance medley relay that was 10th at last year’s NCAA indoor meet. This year’s women's 3,000 preliminaries is scheduled for Friday at 12:30 pm with the final on 4:40 pm Saturday if Tierney qualifies. The NCAA mile preliminaries are set for Friday at 5 pm. If Toth advances to the final, she will run again on Saturday at 3:05 pm. The Jumbos will need strong All-American efforts (top eight) from each to get into the top 25 in the team standings.


Max Waldbaum, Sophomore, Men’s Lacrosse

Waldbaum scored 12 goals in two games over the weekend, with six each in wins at both Hamilton and Cortland. At Hamilton, Tufts trailed 4-3 at the end of one quarter and Waldbaum scored twice in the second quarter to help Tufts turn it around to 9-5 at the half. He then scored twice during a decisive 5-1 stretch by Tufts to start the second half which turned a 9-6 lead into 14-7. Then on Sunday his back-to-back goals late in the first quarter gave the Jumbos the lead for good (5-3) at Cortland. He added two more in the second quarter and then two again in the fourth as the Jumbos kept the Red Dragons at an arm's length.



Erica DeCandido, Junior, Women’s Basketball

DeCandido was a leader as the Jumbos hosted and won an NCAA Tournament Regional. She averaged 16.5 points, eight rebounds and four assists in the two games. In a 70-44 win over Western England in the first round, she scored ten of her 13 points in the third quarter as the Jumbos opened up what had been just a single-digit lead at halftime. She also had 10 rebounds in the game. In the second round against Haverford, DeCandido tallied 20 points with six rebounds and five assists and made five free throws in the fourth quarter as the Jumbos got by the Fords 52-46.




Men's lacrosse goalie Mason Pollack takes home Play of the Week honors this week.  And its with a goal!  Not a save!  Watch it here:


  Women’s Basketball opened the 2019 NCAA Tournament with a 70-44 victory over Western New England in the first round on Friday. First-year Janette Wadolowski (Southington, Conn.) shot an efficient 7-7 from the floor and scored a team-high 18 points in her NCAA Tournament debut against the Golden Bears. Junior co-captain Erica DeCandido (North Wales, Pa.) recorded a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds on Friday night. DeCandido netted a game-high 20 points in the Jumbos’ 52-46 second round win against Haverford. With the Jumbos down 38-37 entering the fourth, Knapp and DeCandido took over as they scored 11 of Tufts’ 15 fourth quarter points. Junior Cailin Harington (Westwood, Mass.) came up with some big rebounds for the brown and blue as she totaled a game-high seven boards. With the two victories, the Jumbos advanced to the “Sweet 16” for the eighth straight season. Watch the Tufts Press Conference after their second-round win: HERE

Senior Erica DeCandido scored 20 points as Women's Basketball edged Haverford in the second round of the NCAA Tournament at Cousens on Saturday.

  In other Women’s Basketball news released last week, co-captains Jac Knapp and Erica DeCandido were both named to the NESCAC All-Conference first team. The honor is the first for both players.

  No. 4 Men’s Lacrosse began their 2019 campaign with a 20-11 win over conference opponent Hamilton on Saturday. Sophomore Max Waldbaum (Denver, Colo.) scored a game-high six goals against the Continentals. Junior Matt Treiber (Medfield, Mass.) dished out two assists and put three shots in the back of the cage on Saturday. Fellow junior Mason Pollack (Arlington, Va.) recorded 17 saves and his first win of the year along with scoring a goal. The Jumbos then played on Sunday and defeated No. 17 Cortland 19-15 led by six more goals from Waldbaum. Junior Nick Shanks (Laguna Beach, Calif.) and senior Ben Connelly (Winnetka, Ill.) each scored four goals on Sunday against the Red Dragons. Pollack stopped another 13 shots and senior Henry Hollen (San Diego, Calif.) won 23 of 31 face-offs. 

  First-year Colette Smith (Moorestown, N.J.) scored five goals and dished out two assists in her collegiate debut as No. 11 Women’s Lacrosse posted an 18-11 season-opening win against Hamilton. Senior Courtney Grygiel (Andover, Mass.) recorded a team-high three assists. Sophomore Kirsten Grazewski (Wayland, Mass.), junior Maddie Norman (Glastonbury, Conn.), and returning NESCAC Player of the Year senior Dakota Adamec (Katonah, N.Y.) each netted three goals on Saturday for the Jumbos. Junior Lily Baldwin (Cincinnati, Ohio) tallied a game-high five groundballs. 

  Men’s Track and Field competed at the Tufts National Qualifying Meet on Saturday afternoon. Seniors Anthony Kardonsky (Tenafly, N.J.) and Hiroto Watanabe (Yarmouth Port, Mass.) improved their times in their respective events on Saturday. Kardonsky clocked a flat-track time of 21.81 in the 200, which ranked 22nd overall. Watanabe recorded a time of 1:52.21 in the 800 meters, which was a top 20 mark and earned him NCAA qualification. 

  Women’s Track also competed in the Tufts National Qualifying Meet on Saturday. Tufts’ foursome of senior co-captain Kelsey Tierney (Whitman, Mass.), junior Julia Gake (Wilmington, Mass.), junior Lauren Diaz (Summit, N.J.), and junior Rhemi Toth (Weston, Conn.) recorded a season-best time of 11:52.16 in the distance medley relay. Their time ranked 22nd in the nation. The Jumbos had seniors Evelyn Drake (Murfreesboro, Tenn.), Kylene DeSmith (Rochester, N.H.), Julia Noble (Hingham, Mass.), and Trish Blumeris (Chelmsford, Mass.) set personal records on Saturday afternoon.     

  Sophomore Amber Chong (Issaquah, Wash.) competed for Women’s Swimming and Diving over the weekend at the NCAA Diving Regional. On Friday, Chong placed fifth among NESCAC divers and was 13th overall in the one-meter event. In the three-meter event, she placed 17th overall.  

  The national qualifying lists for Men’s and Women’s Swimming were announced last week and the Jumbos will be well represented at the NCAA Division III Championships coming up March 20-23 in Greensboro, North Carolina. The Jumbo men’s team is sending 13 individuals and the women’s team had 10 individuals qualify. 

  The Tufts Field Hockey team welcomed a new member to its coaching staff as Hannah Richard joined the Jumbos this week.

   The Jumbo Co-ed Sailing team resumed their 2018-19 season by competing at the Share Trophy Team Race. Tufts was fourth out of eight teams in the regatta hosted by Brown University which was shortened to one day due to the weahter.