William Jefferson Clinton may very well be the most popular Arkansan among Irish men and women, but there is no doubt that John McDonnell is the favorite Irishmen in the president’s home state.
The NCAA championship trophies are up to 35 and counting after Coach McDonnell’s Razorbacks recently finished on top in the NCAA Men’s Indoor Track & Field Championships, held for the first time in the spanking new Randal Tyson Track Center in Fayetteville, Ark.
The Razorbacks won largely on the strength of jumper Melvin Lister’s legs. Lister won both the long and triple jumps. Arkansas also placed in both the triple jump and high jump.
McDonnell’s crew scored 69.50 points to runner-up Stanford’s 52. McDonnell hails from Crossmolina, Co. Mayo.
The University of California’s women’s team dropped two places in the national rankings to the No. 4 position but rebounded to defeat 13th-ranked William & Mary, 6-3, with Claire Curran contributing two points.
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The Dublin senior was a winner at third singles over Delphine Troch, 7-6 (11-9), 6-1. She also teamed with Amy Jensen at first doubles to defeat Troch and Carolijn van Rossum, 8-5.
Seton Hall gutted out a pair of 5-4 victories over Brown and Temple recently. Laura McCracken, a senior from Greystones, Co. Wicklow, dispatched Brown’s Irene Adjuar, 6-1, 6-1. Meanwhile, Judy McAuley and Pille Arike put away Olivia Wang and Maria deValle, 8-4, at second doubles. McAuley is a senior from Loughlinstown, Co. Dublin. McAuley had little trouble in a fifth singles match with Temple’s Nadia Ramdass, winning 6-0, 6-0. McCracken and Kyli LaSalle produced a win at first doubles over Tamara Truta and Kristen Harris, 8-5.
Mississippi State’s Eimear Sloan has been on something of a roll recently. The senior from Dublin teams with Carole Soubis at first doubles and the pair is ranked 43rd in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association poll. MSU, ranked 25th among teams, defeated Alabama, 8-1, with Sloan and Soubis making short work of Millie Begovic and Becca Baum, 8-1. In a 7-2 triumph over Alabama-Birmingham, Sloan joined Linda Mattsson at second doubles to defeat K.B. Mogonediwa and Michelle North, 8-2. Sloan also took a spin at fifth singles, outscoring Esther Obergfoll, 7-6, 6-4. The Lady Bulldogs then fell to 16th-ranked Vanderbilt, 6-3, although Sloan delivered a win at third singles over Kristy Blumberg, 0-6, 6-1, 6-2.
The tables were turned in doubles action, however, as Blumberg and Kate Burson handed Sloan and Soubis an 8-2 defeat. MSU then applied an 8-1 hurting to South Florida. Sloan and Soubis knocked off Ashlee Callahan and Tina Harrison, 8-5.
Indiana’s George McGill, a senior from Castletroy, Co. Limerick, defeated Kentucky’s Gustav Pousette, 6-4, 0-6, 6-4, at fourth singles, although the Hoosiers lost the match to the Wildcats, 5-2. McGill and Ari Widlansky came out on the short end of an 8-2 verdict at third doubles against Carlos Drada and Ravan Stephens.
Robert Collins helped provide the silver lining to the cloud that hung over 66th-ranked Rice, which lost to No. 23 Georgia, 7-0. The Dublin senior and Prakash Venkataraman were triumphant at first doubles by a 9-7 score over Matias Boeker and Travis Parrott for the Owls’ only victory of the match. Rice then regrouped to defeat East Carolina, 5-0, as Collins and Venkataraman decisioned Alexandre Girard and Nicolas Jaffrelot, 8-7, in
first doubles action.
The living has been easy for Nick Malone and the Brown Bears, and it’s not even summertime yet. Brown racked up 7-0 wins over both Rutgers and Army, with Malone posting wins at second singles and at first doubles alongside Justin Natale. Malone, on his own, took care of Rutgers’ Martijn Olthof, 6-2, 7-6(2), and Army’s Arnie Albornoz, 6-3, 6-3. The duo of Malone and Natale defeated Rutgers’ Olthof and Akshay Jagdale, and Army’s Wes White and Lowell Goldman by identical 8-5 scores. Malone is a sophomore from Greystones, Co. Wicklow.
Alabama-Birmingham came out on top in the 49er Collegiate Classic at the Virginia Country Club in Long Beach, Cal. UAB Freshman Gr’me McDowell from Portrush, Co. Antrim, tied for second place, one stroke behind teammate Daniel Ozley. McDowell shot one-over-par 214 (73-72-69). UAB’s Chris Devlin, a senior from Ballymena, Co. Antrim, tied for 10th place at 219 (69-79-71). Toledo was also on the course and settled for a fifth place finish, 32 strokes behind UAB. Ricky Elliott was low man for Toledo at 217 (73-75-69). He is a senior from Portrush.
Also teeing it up for Toledo were Tim Rice, a senior from Rosbrien, Co. Limerick, who finished in a tie for 21st place at 224 (75-78-71), David Jones, a freshman from Derry, who tied for 39th place at 228 (72-80-76), and Alan Murray, a sophomore from Bray, Co. Wicklow, who tied for 41st place at 229 (74-76-78).
Campbell had a go of it in the William & Mary Invitational at Kingsmill River in Williamsburg, Va. and came away with a fifth place finish, six strokes behind Austin Peay. Dublin sophomore David Carroll shot five-over-par 147 (75-72) to finish in a tie for fifth place. Low man was North Carolina-Wilmington’s Sean Dougherty, a junior from Suffolk, Va., who shot 140 for the 36-hole tournament.