All right, let's get right into it, shall we? It's been a crazy week.
A week ago today, Austin Kenon exploded on Senior Night. A career-high 38 points later, the Keydets had a huge 91-84 win over High Point, helping VMI keep its tournament hopes alive. Next up? Charleston Southern, who's enjoying a respectable year down at the BucDome. That game goes off Thursday night, and a win would be, shall we say, helpful. Looming in the season finale is Coastal Carolina, who is bearing down on the Big South record for regular season victories.
It would be nice for the Keydets to be looking for a momentum win in Conway, rather than simply trying to get into the conference tourney...However, if VMI does get in, that season-ending game at CCU could pay dividends. The Keydets and Chanticleers would likely face off again, just days after the regular season ended, and it is very hard, historically speaking, to beat a team in two games that close together. It is certainly a two-sided coin, without a doubt.
Wrestling continues to march toward the SoCon Championships...A 31-9 loss to Chattanooga ended the team's regular season, but they have time to rest up and train for the conference tournament, as that doesn't take place until March 6.
Baseball opened its season with an impressive sweep of Bucknell this past weekend...The three-game series featured some very notable play from a handful of freshmen, particularly Cory Spangenburg, who hit .500 with two doubles and a home run over the three-game sweep. This week's game with Richmond has been postponed, leaving the Keydets looking toward Friday for their return, when Lafayette is expected to come to Gray-Minor Stadium for the opening of a three-game series.
Also with baseball, our popular player blogs have made a return. Tanner Biagini is filing this one from baseball, and it is quite the humorous read so far...Make sure you check it out, and read all about the "House that Sam Roberts Built".
Lacrosse had a head-turning game Saturday, nearly pulling off an upset of Army before eventually falling, 11-9. A four-goal comeback in the fourth quarter, a push that got the Keydets within one with 5:51 to play, fell just short as Army notched the clincher in the final 90 seconds. Stephen Robarge was the catalyst for the team's performance, as he won 16 of 19 face-offs on the day, helping earn himself the MAAC Defensive Player of the Week honor. Jacksonville comes to town Saturday, fresh off its first win in program history, a triple OT thriller over #18 Denver. That game will be at 1 p.m.
Track sent a handful of athletes to Virginia Tech this past weekend, and action was headlined by Felix Kitur posting an NCAA Provisional Qualifying time in the 800-meters (1:49.55). The Big South Championships now loom large, and VMIKeydets.com is conducting an in-depth preview all this week. Monday, we broke down the contenders in the women's pole vault, and later today, we'll have a detailed overview of the men's weight throw. The series culminates Friday with an interview with VMI head coach Darrin Webb, before the Championships begin Saturday in Clemson, S.C.
In a side note for track, we're preparing for the Military Championship meet that we'll host at Foster Stadium in March...Look for more info on that as we get closer to the date.
Swimming and Diving closed out its season this past week, as they took part in the CCSA Championships. James Goodwillie had a great meet (In a bit of a scoop, Goodwillie and the aforementioned Robarge will share the VMI Athlete of the Week honor that'll be announced later today), including earning the first podium finish for the Keydets since they joined the conference. Both the men's and women's teams broke multiple school records, and matched their best finishes since becoming part of the CCSA.
Finally, VMI men's soccer coach Ben Freakley announced his resignation Wednesday. He will accept a position at Georgia Southern, and a national search for a new head coach is underway. Former assistant Richie Rose has assumed the title of Interim Head Coach during the search.