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The Sagehen Report: Week of November 21

Annie Lydens '13 in her championship race

Annie Lydens '13 in her championship race

This past week saw one Sagehen make Pomona-Pitzer history, while another team took the defending NCAA Division III national champions into double overtime in a dramatic home debut.

The Sagehen history was made by a familiar source, as Annie Lydens ’13 came in third place at the NCAA Division III National Championships in Winneconne, Wisconsin to earn All-America honors. It was the highest-ever finish for a Pomona-Pitzer Cross Country runner (men or women), surpassing the fifth-place finish of Crosby Freeman ’05 at the men’s nationals in 2004. Lydens ran a personal-best time of 21.02, 25 seconds faster than she ran at the nationals last year when she came in ninth place, which was the highest ever finish for a Pomona-Pitzer Women’s Cross Country runner before she broke it this weekend.

Lydens has now earned three top-10 finishes in her three national competitions, including a second-place finish at last year’s NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field championships in the 5000 meters and a third-place finish this weekend. She will be in the hunt for national championships in both the 1500 and the 5000 meters this spring.

The Pomona-Pitzer Men’s Basketball team, meanwhile, pushed defending national champion St. Thomas (Minn.) to the brink at Voelkel Gymnasium on Saturday. The Sagehens led by five with 30 seconds to play, before St. Thomas hit a circus shot and converted on an offensive rebound off a missed free throw to tie the score. Pomona-Pitzer had buzzer-beaters to try to win the game in regulation and in the first overtime, but neither would fall, and a go-ahead shot from Greg Wright ’12 in the second overtime rimmed in-and-out with 35 seconds to play. Jake Klewer ’14 had a terrific day on offense with 23 points on 10-14 shooting, while Michael Cohen ’15 had a breakout game, scoring 21 points on 7-10 shooting. The team will be back in action at the David Wells Classic this weekend, facing Dominican (Ill.) at home on Friday, and St. Olaf at CMS on Saturday.

A young Sagehen Women’s Basketball team opened with a pair of home losses, but showed signs of progress in a 57-44 loss to Pacific (Ore.) on Friday. Ruthie Shapiro PI ’15 hit her first three-point attempts to keep the Sagehens within 26-22 at the break, before Pacific (Ore.) was able to pull away in the second half. Shaprio and Emi Hashizume PI ’14 each had six steals to lead a strong defensive effort. Alex Sones ’13 also had 13 points and Maria Weyhrauch ’15 added 12 in an opening-day loss to San Diego Christian on Tuesday. The Sagehens will also be in action at the David Wells Classic, facing Southwestern at CMS on Friday, and UC Santa Cruz at home on Saturday.

The Men’s Water Polo team concluded its season with a win over Redlands in the seventh place match at the Western Water Polo Association Championships this weekend. The Sagehens opened the WWPA by defeating La Verne 13-12 in the opening game, then battled third-seeded Santa Clara deep into the fourth quarter in the quarterfinals before falling 10-6. Mark Hudnall ’13 was named second-team All-WWPA, while Stephen Vint PI ’15 was named to the All-Rookie team.

In other postseason honors, Danny Nasry ’13 earned the SCIAC Brine Award of Distinction for his performance on the field, in the classroom and in the community for the Men’s Soccer team. Nasry, who carries a 3.87 GPA in philosophy, tied for the team lead in assists and has coordinated the Homeless Lunches program for the 5c’s. He was also a second-team All-SCIAC, while Erik Munzer PI ’13 was named to the first team and Arash Mahboubi ’15 and Rollie Thayer ’13 were on the second team. Ellen Yamasaki PI ’15, meanwhile, was named the SCIAC Freshman of the Year, as well as earning a spot on the second team.