B Page -- May 12, 2010

CSU VIKINGS/NCAA TENNIS

Continued from A Page

 PREVIEWING THE VIKINGS: Head coach Brian Etzkin has transformed the Cleveland State tennis program into one of the top mid-major programs during his eight year tenure, leading the Vikings to the last three Horizon League Championships. This year's squad is experienced from top to bottom, including the top spot in the singles lineup being held by senior Phil Orno (29-11), a four-time first team All-Horizon League selection. Sophomore Yannick Goossens (25-10) anchors the No. 2 spot, while senior four-time all-league selectionRyan Hamning (23-11; No. 3) and junior Rob Fox (28-10; No. 4) solidfy the middle of the lineup. Juniors Chris Klepatz (19-14; No. 5) and John Haley (18-17; No. 6) provide the Vikings with experience at the bottom of the lineup. Orno and Hamning (24-8) are the No. 1 doubles squad for the fourth consecutive season, while Fox and Haley (21-11) combine to form the No. 2 squad and Goossens and Klepatz (15-8) playing at No. 3 doubles.

THREE EARN ALL-LEAGUE HONORS: CSU had three players recognized on the All-Horizon League teams that were announced at the postseason banquet on April 23 during the league tournament. Senior Phil Orno and sophomore Yannick Goossens were both selected to the first team, while senior Ryan Hamning was a second team pick.

John Haley

John Haley


... AND SO DOES ETZKIN: Head coach Brian Etzkin was recognized by his peers in the league, picking up Horizon League Coach of the Year accolades for the third time in his career (2007, 2009). Etzkin guided the Vikings to 20 wins for the second consecutive season, tying the school record for victories in a season. He also led CSU to a perfect 7-0 mark in the league.


NCAA First & Second Rounds

Cleveland State (20-6) at No. 12 Kentucky (23-8) 
Dates: Saturday, May 15, 2010 - 1st Round
              Sunday, May 16, 2010 - 2nd Round (if CSU wins 1st round)
                      vs. Georgia Tech or Binghamton
Time: 1:00 p.m. EST - First Round
            1:00 p.m. EST - Second Round
Site: Hillary J. Boone Tennis Complex - Lexington, Ky.
Livestats: www.ukathletics.com


ORNO MAKES IT FOUR STRAIGHT: Phil Orno's selection to the All-Horizon League first team marked the fourth consecutive season that he earned a spot on the first team. He became just the fifth player in league history to garner a first team selection in four straight seasons, joining Butler's Jimmy Borendame and Brandon Currie and Wright State's Chad Camper and Chad Derry. All four of those players were first team picks from 1999-2002.

LEAGUE DOMINANCE: Cleveland State has dominated the Horizon League over the last three years, winning three straight titles. But the dominance isn't limited to the league tournament as the Vikings have won 25 consecutive matches over league foes. The last time a Horizon League team defeated the Vikings was on April 6, 2008, a 4-3 win by Butler.

ORNO AFTER NO. 100: Senior Phil Orno enters the NCAA Championship with a school record 99 career singles victories, needing one more to reach 100 for his career. He leads the squad with 29 victories this year after winning 21 matches as a freshman, 25 as a sophomore when he was the Horizon League Player of the Year, and 24 last season.

THROWING THE HAMMER DOWN: Senior Ryan Hamning has certainly left his mark on the men's tennis program. One of just three players in school history to earn All-Horizon League honors in four straight seasons, he enters the NCAA tournament with 87 career singles victories and 95 career doubles wins, ranking second all-time behind Phil Orno's 101 doubles victories.

Ryan Hamning

Ryan Hanning


FOUR GET TO 20: Cleveland State has four players with at least 20 singles wins this season, the first time in program history that has been accomplished. Phil Orno leads the way with 29 victories and is followed by Rob Fox (28), Yannick Goossens (25) and Ryan Hamning (23). Two other players are closing in on 20 wins with Chris Klepatz at 19 victories andJohn Haley at 18.

DOUBLES DUO: There have been many famous duos throughout history, including Batman & Robin, Starsky & Hutch, Bert & Ernie and Laurel & Hardy. But over the last four years, the duo of Phil Orno and Ryan Hamning have made their mark as one of the most dominant doubles teams in the history of the Horizon League, posting a 92-28 (.767) record while playing at the No. 1 position. They set a school record with 26 doubles wins as freshmen,19 victories as sophomores, 23 wins last season and 24 victories this year.

THE GOOSE IS LOOSE: After splitting time between No. 3 and No. 4 singles as a freshman, Yannick Goossens moved up to No. 2 in the lineup this year and responded by earning a spot on the All-Horizon League first team after posting a 25-10 mark. Goossens, who went 6-1 in league matches this season, enters the NCAA tournament having won a team-high five straight matches.

FOXY PLAYER: Junior Rob Fox enters the NCAA tournament ranked second on the team with 28 singles victories and has 74 wins in his career. With one more season of eligibility remaining, Fox has a chance to threaten Phil Orno's school record for career wins (Orno has 99 going into the the NCAA's).

IT'S A FAMILY AFFAIR: Junior John Haley may be a new face to the Vikings this year, but the name is certainly familiar to those within the program. Haley's older brother, Paul, played tennis at CSU from 2001-05, winning 38 matches in his career. John, who played two years at Tyler J.C. before transferring to CSU, has helped solidify the bottom of the order this year, posting an 18-17 mark at No. 5 and 6 singles and also teaming with Rob Fox to go 21-11 at No. 2 doubles.

DOUBLING UP: Rob Fox and John Haley provided the Vikings with the biggest highlight of the fall when the duo won two matches and advanced to the round of 16 at the Wilson/ITA Regional Championships. It was the furthest that a CSU doubles team had ever advanced at regionals.

20:20: CSU's win over UIC in the league title match on April 25 allowed the Vikings to clinch their second straight 20 win season. This year's team and the 2008-09 squad are the only two teams in program history to record 20 win campaigns. Last year's team also won 20 matches.

EASY AS 1, 2, 3: Cleveland State won its third straight Horizon League Championship with a 4-0 win over UIC on April 25, becoming the first team in school history to win three consecutive Horizon League titles.

APRIL DOMINANCE: Cleveland State has dominated play during the month of April over the last three years, winning 22 consecutive matches played during the month. The last time CSU lost a match in April was a 4-3 setback to Butler on April 6, 2008.

UP NEXT: If the Vikings defeat Kentucky in the first round, CSU would advance to the second round to face the winner of the Georgia Tech/Binghamton match on Sunday (May 16) at 1:00 p.m. The match would be played at Kentucky.

    

NCAC LAX ALL LEAGUE


 Continued from A Page

Kreuter was the defensive cornerstone for the second-place Ladies. She finished second in the NCAC in saves

per game (9.00) and saves percentage (.577) and was fifth in goals-against average (8.43). Kreuter is a three-time

first-team All-NCAC honoree.

Four other players are repeat first-team selections: Allegheny junior Jensen Paterson (Atlanta, GA/The

Lovett School), Kenyon senior Liz Hancock (Hopkins, MN/Hopkins) and junior Brigid Donahue

(Trumbulll, CT/St. Joseph), and Denison senior Bethany Keller (Worthington, OH/Thomas

Worthington). Paterson and Keller are three-time first-team honorees, while Hancock earned honorable mention

in 2008.

Kenyon freshman Emily Nichols (Caldwell, NJ/Caldwell) was voted Newcomer of the Year, and is the only freshman

to earn first-team honors. She scored 48 goals and averaged 3.47 points per game for the Ladies.

Kenyon head coach Meredith Buzzi been named Coach of the Year for the second time. Buzzi led the Ladies

to a 13-2 record and guided her team to the finals of the North Coast tournament for the second straight season.

She has a 34-12 (.739) record in three seasons with Kenyon.

Horizon League


HORIZON LEAGUE SOFTBALL TOURNEY


 Continued from A Page


PREVIEWING THE VIKINGS:  It didn't take long for fourth year head coach Angie Nicholson to settle on a starting lineup this season. With a somewhat veteran lineup returning, featuring five returning starters and 11 letterwinners, Nicholson has shaken things up a bit in hopes of securing CSU its second straight league title and NCAA berth.  Just two players in the starting lineup are playing the same position that they did last season.  The lone similarity is in the battery where senior Amanda Macenko (36-13, 2.21 ERA), the two-time Horizon League Pitcher of the Year, is once again receiving the lion's share of innings in the circle with freshman Tess Sito (3-0, 2.71) getting starts recently  while junior Amy Powell (.278, 7 HR, 19 RBI) handles the catching duties.  The outfield has been shaken up a bit as junior Jessica Burt (.333, 26 RBI, 43 runs, 28-34 SB), who started in left field in 2008 and missed all but eight innings of 2009, shifts to center.  With returners Andrea Nagy and Christina Stoffer out for the year with injuries, senior Mimi Mahon (.228, 2 HR, 14 RBI) has taken over in right field with Alicia Nichols (.309, 22 runs, 13-19 SB) also seeing time and sophomore Megan Bashak (.244, 3 HR, 22 RBI, 28 runs) in left field.  Lia Gordon (.305, 9 HR, 34 RBI, 30 runs) and Katelyn Ciminelli (.323, 32 RBI, 24 runs) have switched positions with Gordon, a first team all-league choice last year, taking over at first base with Ciminelli being tabbed the DP. The rest of the infield is new with freshmen Gabby Gillilan (.264, 3 HR, 24 RBI, 30 runs) playing third base, Sito (.436, 17 HR, 44 RBI, 50 runs, 39-48 SB) handling shortstop and Dara Toman (.248, 16 HR, 44 RBI, 35 runs) at second base.  Freshmen Caila Ferro (.225, 4 RBI) and Macall Sheppard (.160, 3 RBI, 5 runs) fill in at second and right field.

2010 Horizon League Softball Championship
Thursday-Saturday, May 13-15
Viking Field, Cleveland, Ohio

Tournament Schedule


Thursday, May 13
Game 1:  No. 4 Valparaiso vs. No. 5 Green Bay, 10:00 a.m.
Game 2:  No. 3 UIC vs. No. 6 Butler, 12:00 noon
Game 3:  No. 1 Cleveland St. vs. Game 1 winner, 2:30 p.m.
Game 4:  No. 2 Wright State vs. Game 2 winner, 4:30 p.m.

Friday, May 14
Game 5:  Game 1 loser vs. Game 2 loser, 10:00 a.m.
    Losing team eliminated
Game 6:  Game 3 loser vs. Game 4 loser, 12:00 noon
    Losing team eliminated
Game 7:  Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 2:30 p.m.
Game 8:  Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner, 4:30 p.m.
    Losing team eliminated

Saturday, May 15
Game 9:  Game 8 winner vs. Game 7 loser, 10:00 a.m.
    Losing team eliminated
Game 10:  Game 7 winner vs. Game 9 winner, 12:00 noon
Game 11:  (Only if Game 7 winner loses Game 10), 2:00 p.m.


VIKINGS REPRESENTED IN NCAA STATS:  Cleveland State is ranked in the top 50 nationally in seven of the 11 categories in the most recent NCAA statistics, which were released on May 12.  CSU was 17th in doubles per game (1.56), 18th in slugging percentage (.502), 19th in stolen bases (2.0), 21st in home runs (1.15), 23rd in winning percentage (.764), 36th in scoring (5.55) and 47th in batting average (.295). Individually, Amanda Macenko leads the nation in wins (36), is seventh in strikeouts (335), ninth in shutouts (11), and 23rd in fewest walks allowed (1.29), while Tess Sito is ranked 11th in stolen bases (39), 13th in home runs (17), 16th in batting average (.436), 18th in slugging percentage (.813) and 26th in on-base percentage (.525).  Jessica Burt is 38th in triples (5) and 51st in stolen bases (28), Lia Gordon is 15th in sacrifice flies (4) and Dara Toman is 27th in home runs (16).

VIKINGS EARN LEAGUE HONORS:  The Vikings reaped the rewards of a strong season on Wednesday when CSU swept the major league awards that were announced by the Horizon League office.  Freshman Tess Sito was tabbed as the league's Player of the Year and the Newcomer of the Year, senior Amanda Macenko was selected as the Pitcher of the Year for the third straight season and head coach Angie Nicholson was named the Coach of the Year for the second time in three seasons.  In addition, junior Katelyn Ciminelli, Macenko and Sito were named to the All-Horizon League first team with juniors Jessica Burt and Amy Powell being selected to the second team.  Finally, Dara Toman and Sito were members of the All-Newcomer Team.

RECORDS IN DANGER:  Several Vikings begin the Horizon League Tourney within reach of breaking CSU single season records.  With 180 at-bats this year, Jessica Burt needs just 10 more to break the single season record of 190 set by Tiffany Stocker in 2000.  Burt is currently sharing the season record with 16 doubles.  Tess Sito (39 steals) needs two stolen bases to break Stocker's season record of 41 set in 2001 and with 44 RBIs, both Sito and Dara Toman need just four to equal the record of 48 set by Tenille Whiteside in 1994.  Finally, Sito and Lia Gordon each have 29 walks, five short of the school mark of 34 set by J.J. Thornberry in 2006.

THE 20-20 CLUB:  One of the strengths of the Vikings heading into the league tourney is the offensive depth of the starting lineup as seven of the starters have scored at least 20 runs and driven in 20 this season.  Tess Sito (50 runs, 44 RBI), Lia Gordon (30, 34) and Dara Toman (35, 44) have each gone one step further and posted 30-30 numbers (Sito adding 39 steals for a 30-30-30 season) while Jessica Burt (43, 26), Katelyn Ciminelli (24, 32), Gabby Gillilan (30, 24) and Megan Bashak (28, 22) have each produced a 20-20 season.

. . . SITO IS IN SELECT COMPANY:  The selection of Tess Sito as Horizon League Player of the Year puts the Viking freshman in some elite company.  She becomes just the fourth freshman in league history - and first since 1993 - to be  tabbed as the MVP and just the second player (joining Notre Dame's Terri Kobata in 1993) to be named player of the year and newcomer of the year in the same season. Sito is also jut the second Viking to earn Player of the Year, joining CSU Hall of Fame member Tenille Whiteside, who received the honor in 1997.

42: The sweep over Valparasio over the weekend allowed the Vikings to become just the third program in league history to win 40 or more games in a season (and the first since 2005).  UIC has achieved the mark 10 times, including a record 67 wins in 1999 while Notre Dame is the only other team to accomplish it, doing so in 1995.  The 42 wins are also a program best, topping the old record of 38 set in 2006.

. . . AND 22: The Vikings ended the season with a 22-2 league record to not only break the old league record for conference wins in a season, but obliterate it.  Prior to this season, CSU held the record for league victories with 17 set last year.  The Vikings finished six games ahead of second place UIC (16-8), easily surpassing the old record for largest difference between first and second, the old record being four games when UIC (16-1) finished four games ahead of CSU (13-6) in 2004.

THERE IS NO PLACE LIKE ROAD:  One of the reasons for the Vikings' success the last couple of seasons is their ability to win games on the road.  Over the last three seasons, CSU is 26-4 in league road games, including a league-best 8-1 record this year.  CSU has had the best road record for three consecutive seasons, going 9-1 in 2009 and 9-2 in 2008.

AFTER SIX:  It has been tough coming back on the Vikings late in games this season as CSU is 31-1 when leading or being tied after six innings. CSU has allowed just seven runs in the seventh inning this year. This is nothing new as the Vikings were 29-3 when leading or tied after six inning last year and enter the week with a 53-0 record when leading after six innings in the last two seasons.  Going back even further, CSU is 75-1 over the last three seasons, the lone loss coming to Wright State in the semi-finals of the 2008 Horizon League Championship when CSU couldn't hold a 4-3 lead, falling, 6-4.

VIKINGS CLOSE IN ON STEAL RECORD:  With 110 stiolen bases this season, Cleveland State will begin play in the league tourney needing just five more steals to equal the school record of 115 steals in a season.  Tess Sito (39) and Jessica Burt (28) are first and third, respectively, in the Horizon League this year in steals with Alicia Nichols ranking third on the squad with 13 steals.  CSU ranked 19th in the nation in the latest NCAA statistics, averaging 2.0 steals per game.

MACENKO ON THE NCAA CHARTS:  Senior Amanda Macenko continues to climb up the various NCAA career pitching charts.  She enters the Horizon League tourney tied for 19th with 116 career victories, including a nation's best 36 this year.  She also ranks tied for 10th in games pitched (187), eighth in game started (163), 16th in complete games (131) and 18th in inning pitched (1,089).

. . . AND MACENKO TOPPLES THE CSU SEASON MARKS. . . AGAIN:  Amanda Macenko enters the Horizon League tourney having broken just about every CSU single season record this year, most of which she has broken more than once.  Her 36 wins easily bested her old record of 28, set last year, giving her the top four single season win totals in school history.  The same is true in innings pitched, where her 313.2 toppled last year's total of 275.  She has four of the top five efforts in games started, appearances and complete games with her 52 games, 49 starts and 37 complete games this year each being a record. She now has three of the top four strikeout totals in a season, with her 336 this year breaking Amy Kyler's old record of 325 set in 1997.

. . . AND SURPASSES 1,000 CAREER STRIKEOUTS:  A 30-strikeout performance against Valparaiso last weekend allowed Amanda Macenko to become the second pitcher in league history to strike out 1,000 batters in a career.  She has struck out a school-record 336 batters this year to raise her career total to 1,028.  She joins UIC's Samantha Iuli (1997-200), who had 1,111 strikeouts, as the only pitchers to surpass the 1,000 mark.

MACENKO NEARS "K" MARK:  With 336 strikeouts this season, Amanda Macenko needs just 30 more to equal the league record of 366 by UIC's Samantha Iuli in 1999.

THE BIG BASHERS:  Up until the start of the 2009 season, the CSU school record for home runs in a season was eight by Amy Jauert in 1997 and 26 by the 2006 squad.  Over the last two years, the Vikings have exploded to clout 112 long balls, including a record 63 this season.  Tess Sito is the current holder of the school record with 17 HR this year while Dara Toman is a close second with 16, Lia Gordon has nine and Amy Powell seven.  Three players hit more than eight home runs in 2009, making it six players to topple the old season record in the last two years.  CSU ranks 21st nationally in home runs, averaging 1.15 a game.

. . . GORDON STILL HEADS CAREER HR CHART:  The CSU career  homerun chart has undergone some changes this year as well with senior Lia Gordon entering the league tourney as the career HR leader with 26, including nine this year.  Freshmen Tess Sito and Dara Toman are tied for third and fifth, respectively, with 17 and 16 homeruns while junior Amy Powell is ninth with 14 long balls.

POWELL SHOWS OFF HER DEFENSE: One statistic that has gone unnoticed this season regards the ability of catcher Amy Powell to slow down the running game of opponents.  In 24 league games, Viking opponents have been successful on just seven of their 16 stolen base attempts, a ridiculously low .438 success level, with Powell gunning down nine of the 15 attempts made with her in the game.  In addition, Powell has picked off a school record eight runners this year, six coming during the league season.

JUST LIKE DAD. . . ALMOST:  One of the true ironies regarding the playing career of Amanda Macenko, who will be remembered as the top pitcher in CSU history, is that her father, Mike "the Big Cat" Macenko, is remembered as the greatest power hitter in ASA Softball history.  Playing for Steels Sports, a touring all-star team that doubled as a sales agent for Steel's sports goods, the elder Macenko set a national record by hitting 844 home runs and driving in 1,667 runs during the 1987 season.  The younger Macenko has never had an at-bat during her four seasons as a Viking.

Horizon League



    CSU Baseball


 Continued from A Page

 …AND BEST LEAGUE WEEKEND:  Last weekend was also the best league weekend series that the Vikings have had this season, hitting .369 (44-for-119) as a team with 36 runs, 35 RBI and tied the season high of seven homers in a series. CSU had the best weekend out of six league teams in action, beating out Wright State who had 43 hits, 33 runs and 32 RBI against Milwaukee.


RACK 'EM UP:  The 11-run third inning that the Vikings posted in the 16-11 victory over Youngstown State last Saturday (May 8), marked the first time that CSU has recorded more than six runs in an inning this season. The Vikings have scored six runs in one inning twice this season, against Wright State (April 9) and YSU (May 8, game 2). Over the last four seasons CSU has a 12-3 record when scoring six or more runs in one inning.

Brandon Cooper

Eastlake native Brandon Cooper


HANGING WITH MR. COOPER:  Freshman Brandon Cooper recorded his first victory as a Viking on Saturday, working 8  1/3 innings in the 12-6 win over Youngstown State. Cooper posted a season-high five strikeouts and allowed six runs (two earned) on just six hits, holding the Penguins scoreless in six innings. The start was his second of the season, also starting the third game against UIC (May 1) when he pitched 3  1/3 innings with three strikeouts.


CARTER CRANKS IT AT THE PLATE:  Tom Carter had his best league performance this past weekend against the Penguins, hitting .571 (eight-for-14) with five runs and five RBI. Carter posted his first three-hit game of the season in game one of the doubleheader (three-for-five) and followed it up with another three-hit showing in game two (three-for-five). His previous best league series came against Wright State (April 9-10) when he was three-for-11 (.273) with four runs and three RBI.


SENIOR DAY:  Saturday marked the final time that the CSU baseball team would play Horizon League games at All Pro Freight Stadium this season, and the final time that Jimmy Cowhy, Ryan Franks and Kyle Shaffer would play in league contests at home. All three seniors played on Senior Day, with Cowhy picking up his second win of the season in game one, working five innings of relief with three strikeouts, Franks going five-for-10 (.500) at the plate with five runs and two RBI and Shaffer hitting five-for-11 (.455) with three runs, six RBI and two homers.

Kyle Shaffer

Akron native Kyle Shaffer


VIKINGS LIKE AVON IN LEAGUE PLAY:  All five of CSU's league wins have come at All Pro Freight Stadium this season, with victories over Wright State (April 9-10), UIC (May 1) and Youngstown State (May 8). In coach Kocks' four seasons at Cleveland State his teams have recorded 24 league wins at home and 13 on the road.


LEAGUE LEADERS:  Alex Johnson, Kyle Shaffer and Tom Carter are the only Vikings to lead the league in any statistical categories, with Johnson leading the league in stolen bases (16), total plate appearances (226) and at bats (210), Shaffer leading the caught stealing by category with 14 and Carter ranking first in fielding double plays (37).

Alex Johnson

Iggy Alum Alex Johnson


ONE...TWO...AND THREE!  Tom Carter (SS), Jason Haditsch (2B) and Kyle Shaffer (1B) recorded the first ever CSU triple play on Saturday, May 1 in the first game against UIC, posting the three outs in the top of the sixth inning. UIC's Steve McGuiggan lined out to shortstop for the first out, Ty Rubio was out at second base for the second out and Andy Leonard was out at first for the final out.


WRIGHT STATE THIS SEASON:  The Vikings won two out of the three games played in Avon earlier this season, marking their first league wins and their first back-to-back victories. Anthony Sambula pitched a complete game in the 3-1 CSU victory in the series opener with eight strikeouts, while Pat Shedlock recorded the win on day two. Chuck Gasti led the Viking offense over the series, batting .500 (six-for-12) with seven runs, five RBI, one double, one triple and three homers.


UIC THIS SEASON:  Tom Carter (SS), Jason Haditsch (2B) and Kyle Shaffer (1B) recorded the first ever triple play in game two, while Chuck Gasti led the Viking offense going two-for-three with one run, two RBI and a home run to lead CSU to a 6-3 victory. The Flames posted 14-3 and 17-6 victories in the other two games of the series.


NEXT UP:  The Vikings will host the Akron Zips in their final home game of the season next Tuesday (May 18) at 4:00 p.m., and will close out the 2010 regular season with a three-game series at Butler, including a 3:00 p.m. single game on Friday (May 21) and 12:00 noon doubleheader on Saturday (May 22).


HORIZON LEAGUE SOFTBALL All-STAR TEAM


Continued From Front Page

In addition, junior Katelyn Ciminelli, Macenko and Sito were each named to the All-Horizon League first team with juniors Jessica Burt and Amy Powell being tabbed for the second time.  Finally, Dara Toman and Sito were each voted to the Horizon League All-Newcomer team.

The awards were determined in balloting of the league's nine head coaches.

"This is a real honor for the Viking softball program and our individuals who were selected," CSU head coach Angie Nicholson said.  "We've had a great season and the honors really reflect that.  Now we need to put these away and go out this week and prove that we were deserving by winning the tournament and getting an NCAA bid.

"This is a real strong league.  There were a couple of players who really hurt us this year that weren't honored, which just goes to show you how deep and talented this league is.

"I feel like I have an all-league caliber player at just about every position so even though regulars like Lia Gordon, Dara Toman, Gabby Gillilan and Megan Bashak were left off the all-league team, I don't think that our success this season would have been possible without their contributions," Nicholson added.

Sito, a freshman from Elyria, Ohio, becomes just the fourth freshman in Horizon League history - and the first since 1994 - to earn league player of the year honors as a freshman.  She is only the second to be tabbed as both the Horizon League Player of the Year and Newcomer of the Year in the same season, joining Notre Dame's Terri Kobata, who accomplished it in 1993.

Sito has practically re-written the CSU single season record book in her first season.  She is ahead of the record pace to set marks for batting average (.436), slugging percentage (.812) and on-base percentage (.525) and she has already set records for runs scored (50), hits (72) and home runs (17).  She enters this week's league tourney within reach of breaking the records for RBI (she has 44), walks (29) and stolen bases (39).

In the recent NCAA stats, Sito ranks in the top 30 nationally in six stat categories and her 18-game hit streak is a CSU record.  She leads the league in nine of the 12 major offensive statistics.

Sito is only the second player in CSU history to be tabbed the Horizon League Player of the Year, joining Tenille Whiteside (1997), and she is the first to be named the newcomer of the year.

"I knew going into the season that Tess was capable of putting up these kind of numbers and it would just be a matter of time before everybody else in the country found out how talented she is," Nicholson said.  "She is a very special player who makes everybody else around her better, especially those batting in the lineup around her spot."

Macenko, a native of Brunswick, Ohio, has closed her Viking career in fine fashion, going 36-13 with a 2.21 ERA, leading the nation in wins and ranking seventh in strikeouts (336) and ninth with 11 shutouts.  She has set CSU single season records for wins, appearances (52), game started (49), complete games (37), inning pitched (313.2), and strikeouts.

This is the third straight year that Macenko has received the honor.  She is one of 12 pitchers in NCAA history to win 25 or more games in a season four times and she has set Horizon League career records for wins (116), appearances (187), games started (163), complete games (131) and innings pitched (1,089).  She is second all-time with 1,028 strikeouts.

Macenko has impacted the NCAA record books as well.  She enters the week ranked 19th all-time in career victories, 10th in appearances, eighth in games started, 16th in complete games and 18th in innings pitched.

"Amanda has been a dominant pitcher since the first day she stepped into the circle at CSU," Nicholson said.  "What makes her so tough is that she is capable of throwing more than one game in a day and be as strong, if not stronger, in the final inning as she was in the first.  We will miss her next season."

In her fourth season as head coach of the Vikings, Nicholson (CSU, '00) earns the coach of the year honor for the second time (2008).  She has guided the Vikings to a 141-63 record, including a 60-18 record (.769) in league games.  This was her second Horizon League regular season title and the Vikings will be playing for their second league tournament title and NCAA bid this week.

Nicholson's coaching style has given the Vikings their deepest and most-talented lineup in school history.  CSU teams are an impressive 26-4 in league road games the past three seasons.

Ciminelli, a junior designated player from St. Clair Shores, MI, is third on the team this year with a .323 batting average (50-155), scoring 24 runs and driving in 32.  She has hit 13 doubles and three home runs.

Burt, a junior from LaGrange, OH, bounced back from a knee injury that sidelined her for the 2009 season to hit .333 (60-180), with 43 runs scored and 26 RBI.  She has tied the school record with 16 doubles with two home runs.  She ranks 38th nationally in triples (4) and 51st in stolen bases (28).  Her 28 steals are fifth-best in program history.

Powell is simply the top defensive catcher in the Horizon League this year.  In 24 league games, she has thrown out nine of the 16 runners attempting to steal while setting a CSU record by picking eight runners off base.  At the plate, she is hitting ,278 (30-108) with seven home runs, 11 runs scored and 19 RBI.

Toman has played in all 55 games, starting 54 times, hitting .248 (40-161) with 16 home runs, 11 doubles, 44 RBI and 35 runs scored.  She ranks second on the CSU single season lists in both home runs and RBI.

"Part of our success is due to our depth in the batting order," Nicholson said.  "With Jessica (Burt), Tess (Sito) and Katelyn (Ciminelli) batting at the top of the lineup and Amy (Powell), Dara (Toman) and Lia (Gordon) in the middle, there isn't a spot where opposing pitchers can take a break and when we start to string hits together, we can score runs in bunches."

The Vikings, who ended the regular season with a 42-13 record and in first place in the Horizon League with a 22-2 mark, will be the top seed when they play host to the Horizon League tourney at Viking Field this week (May 13-15).   
        
2010 All-Horizon League Teams

First Team All-League
Jenny Esparza, Butler - P (Fr.)
Tess Sito, Cleveland State - SS (Fr.)
Amanda Macenko, Cleveland State - P (Sr.)
Katelyn Ciminelli, Cleveland State - DP (Sr.)
Katie Cooney, Green Bay - UT (Sr.)
Brooke Andersen, Loyola - SS (Fr.)
Brooke Frydendall, UIC - 1B (Sr.)
Sara Strickland, Valparaiso - OF (So.)
Sadie Conner, Valparaiso - IF (Jr.)
Kristen Bradshaw, Wright State - SS (Sr.)
China Frost, Wright State - 1B (So.)
Louie Haney, Wright State - 3B (Jr.)
 
Second Team All-League
Bridget Paine, Butler - SS (Sr.)
Erin Falkenberry, Butler - 1B-DP (So.)
Jessica Burt, Cleveland State - OF (Jr.)
Amy Powell, Cleveland State - C (Jr.)
Melani Niederer, Green Bay - OF (Sr.)
Stephanie Cihlar, Loyola - OF (Jr.)
Jenna Grim, Loyola - C (Jr.)
Melinda Macias, UIC - OF (So.)
Devin Miller, UIC - P (Fr.)
Jordan Rutkowski, Valparaiso - DP/OF (So.)
Sam McGee, Valparaiso - P (So.)
Justine Shilt, Wright State - 2B (Jr.)

All-Newcomer Team
Jenny Esparza, Butler - P (Fr.)
Meaghan Sullivan, Butler - 2B (Fr.)
Tess Sito, Cleveland State - SS (Fr.)
Dara Toman, Cleveland State - IF (Fr.)
Dani Peerenboom, Green Bay - IF (Fr.)
Brooke Andersen, Loyola - SS (Fr.)
Devin Miller, UIC - P (Fr.)
Coryn Schmit, UIC - 3B (Fr.)
Jessie Marinec, Valparaiso - SS (Fr.)
Vicky Rumph, Youngstown State - IF (Fr.)

Player of the Year:
Tess Sito, Cleveland State

Pitcher of the Year:
Amanda Macenko, Cleveland State

Newcomer of the Year:
Tess Sito, Cleveland State

Coach of the Year:
Angie Nicholson, Cleveland State
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