CCAA teams to play for national title in golf

Three California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) teams will be among the 20 comprising the field at the 2009 Division II NCAA Men’s Golf Championships that open Tuesday at the Loomis Trail Golf Course in Blaine, Wash.

The 72-hole tournament format calls for 18 holes to be played over four days with the final round scheduled for Friday. All four rounds can be followed live on the Internet at

Representing the CCAA is conference champion Sonoma State, along with Cal State San Bernardino and Cal State Stanislaus.

Eight individuals from non-qualifying teams will also take part in the tournament.

West Florida is the reigning NCAA Champion after winning the title in a three-way playoff, the first in the history of the event, North Alabama and St. Edwards also tied for first at the end of regulation. None of those teams are back, but 2007 champion Barry returns.

The top individual back is Sonoma State’s Jarin Todd (Sr., Redmond/Woodinville), the NCAA II Player of the Year in 2007 and 2008. Todd tied for third at nationals last spring and placed 20th in 2007.

Colorado-Colorado Springs’ Tyler Bishop took medalist honors at the NCAA II National Preview Tournament on Sept. 29-30 at Loomis Trail, shooting a 54-hole total of 5-under 208. Washburn’s Matt Ewald was second at 3-under 210.

Two Redlands athletes off to track nationals

Sophomore Mackenzie Smith (Hoquiam, WA) and junior Jake Baechle (Aurora, OH) of the University of Redlands track & field teams gained invitations to the 2009 NCAA Division III Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Marietta, OH, according to an official announcement made today by the NCAA.


Smith, who will compete in the Javelin Throw, enters the meet with the eighth-best mark in NCAA Division III at 139′ 6″. A two-time Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Champion in the event, she placed sixth at the 2008 NCAA Championships in the Javelin Throw, earning All-American status. Trials and finals for the Javelin Throw are both on May 21.


For the second straight season, Baechle has graced the list of NCAA Championship invitees in the 800m Run. Also a two-time SCIAC Champion in the event, he competed in last year’s national championship meet, clocking a 1:53.77 in the preliminary heats of the 800m Run. His entry time of 1:51.28 ranks sixth in NCAA Division III this season. Trials for the men’s 800m Run are on May 22 while finals take place on May 23.


Hosted by Marietta College (OH), the NCAA Championships occur from May 21-23 at Don Drumm Stadium in Marietta, OH.


For an official list of those chosen for the 2009 NCAA Division III Outdoor Track & Field Championships, please visit



Chaffey women choose four-year colleges

Four women’s basketball standouts from Chaffey College have made decisions on their next step.

Forward Zipporah Brown (Rancho Cucamonga HS) is headed to Cal State San Bernardino while frontcourt mate Aundria Anderson (Miller HS) is headed to the Coyotes CCAA rival Cal State Dominguez Hills.

The guard duo of Keisha Mackall (Miller HS) and Tamesha Jackson (Upland HS) is headed to NAIA Bacone College in Okla.

The quartet led the Panthers (22-10, 9-5) to a fifth-place finish in the tough Foothill Conference which advanced its top five teams to the playoffs.

Sagehens season officially ends

The Pomona-Pitzer baseball team just didn’t have another rally left.

The No. 1 Sagehens fell to Chapman 5-2 in an elimination game at the West Region tournament so the season is over. Chapman and George Fox will left to fight it out for a berth in the Division III World Series.

The Sagehens (37-7) had their chances. Down 5-1 in the seventh they loaded the bases with no outs and had the heart of the order up, yet came away with nothing.

In the ninth they had two on with one out, only to have the gane end on a double play.

Brandon Huerta had four hits but the second, third and fourth batters in the order combined to go 2-for-11. That isn’t going to get it done.

The Sagehens went 3-0 against Chapman during the regular season but all three of those games were close. Many thought that Chapman didn’t belong this year. The Panthers didn’t look much like the traditional challenger they have become this season with 14 losses. But they lucked out because the pool of independent teams wasn’t that strong this year.

It is a disappointing end to what was a great season. Before making the trip all in the Sagehen camp said anything short of a World Series berth was going to be a disappointment. One would have to think they are going to feel that way for a long time.

Second place is a familiar tune for local teams

The University of La Verne golf team settled for national runner-up Saturday at the PGA Golf Club in Port St. Lucie, Fla.. It seems to be an old familiar tune where the SCIAC is concerned.

This now makes six straight years the SCIAC has had a golf team finish as the national runner-up. The Leopards were also second in 2007. Redlands was second in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2008.

La Verne was ranked No. 2 nationally coming into the event. But the Leopards led after two rounds and started the final round in third six strokes out of the lead. Junior Mitchell Fedorka tied for medalist honors but then lost in a playoff. Rizal Amin, also of La Verne, was third.

The area was well represented as Redlands ended up ninth and freshman Tain Lee of Claremont-Mudd-Scripps tied for eighth individually.

This now makes four national runner-up finishes for local teams this school year. Remember back in the fall Cal State San Bernardino was the runner-up in Division II volleyball while La Verne was the bridesmaid in Division III.

Then in basketball the Cal Poly Pomona men finished a Cinderalla season, losing a heartbreaker in the nationally televised national championship game against Findlay.

Just a few more events left for the school year. Tennis is up next week and the Cal State golf team will be competing for a Division II title. Track nationals are coming up as well.

Sagehens stay alive, win 16-4

The Pomona-Pitzer baseball team bounced back from a disappointing loss Friday night and defeated SCIAC rival Cal Lutheran 16-4 in an elimination game at the Division III West Regional at Linfield College in Oregon.

Senior Zach Mandelblatt led the effort, pitching eight strong innings and giving upseven hits and four runs, three of those earned. He walked two and struck out four. Mandelblatt, playing just 45 minutes from his Lake Oswego home, also helped himself at the plate with three hits inluding a home run in teh eighth.

Drew Hedman slugged a grand slam in the Sagehens 10-run third inning.

It had to have been nice to eliminate the conference rival.

Now they have to regroup and get back on the field later tonight against Chapman, another foe with whom they are familiar. The Sagehens played Chapman three times this year, winning all of them. but all three of those games were close and sometimes odds catch up to you. So they will have to be on their game.

Sagehens in trouble after 12-6 loss

Pomona-Pitzer’s storybook season could come to a crashing halt in a matter of hours.

The No. 1 ranked team in the country was upset by George Fox University 12-6 at the Division III West Region tournament in Oregon Friday.

The Sagehens (36-6) fall into the loser’s bracket today and will play SCIAC pal Cal Lutheran at noon. The Sagehens took two of three against the Kingsmen this season with that series coming the last weekend of the regular season.

The core players on the team were in the regional in 2007. Been there – done that. The Sagehens aren’t just happy to be there. They had loftier expectations this season so to be in the loser’s bracket so early must be a disappointment.

They have to dig down deep and find a way.

Zach Mandelblatt will be on the mound. He did not pitch in any of the previous games against the Kingsmen.

Leopard golfers looking to rally

The University of La Verne golf team has its work cut out for it.

The Leopards led for two rounds at the Division III national tournament at the PGA Club in Port St. Lucie, Fla. but now they need a good final round to emerge with a championship.

La Verne shot a 302 for a three-round total of 877. That’s two strokes behind second-place Ogelthorpe and six back of leader Methodist University. The Leopards are talented enough to make up the ground but Methodist, currently ranked No. 1, would still likely have to stumble.

Redlands had a bad day and has fallen out of conention.

The good news is that La Verne’s Mitchell Fedorka is still the individual leader, depsite a 2-over 74 that puts him at 213. Teammate Rizal Amin is next at 214 so medalist honors will likely go to the Leopards one way or another. Among those tied for ninth are Andrew Kramer of La Verne and Alex Hedlund of Redlands.

Another bit of irony . . . La Verne and Redlands both play in the same conference, the SCIAC. And between the two teams the SCIAC has boasted the national runner-up the last five years. The current standings make it very possible that could happen again.

While finishing second in the nation is never an accomplishment to look down upon, you would have to think it would be a disappointment for the Leopards because they were in such great position to win it.

Sagehens keep rolling at regional

A one-day rain delay didn’t do anything to derail the Pomona-Pitzer baseball team’s plan of winning a West Region title. The Sagehens opened the tournament at Linfield College (Ore.) with an 8-3 win over Hendrix.

James Kang had three hits, as did senior slugger Drew Hedman. Right-hander David Colvin improved to 8-0 on the mound.

The Sagehens improved to 36-5 on the season. They will play at 3:30 p.m. today.

The day delay did make it unlikely that the five seniors will make it back to Southern California in time for graduation on Saturday. But that’s a good problem to have.

Redlands tennis player honored

University of Redlands junior Paige Sumida (Hilo, HI) was honored with the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA)/Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award for the West Region.  She is now in contention for the national award, which will be announced on May 21.

According the ITA web site, this award recognizes men’s and women’s tennis players at the NCAA Division I, II, and III, NAIA, and Junior College levels who have exhibited outstanding sportsmanship and leadership as well as scholastic, extracurricular and tennis achievements.


During the 2009 campaign, Sumida bolstered the Redlands lineup at No. 2 singles and compiled a 15-7 record.  In doubles, she and junior Whitney Waters (Austin, TX) competed at the No. 1 slot, earning a 16-9 record.  


Sumida played an integral role in the Bulldogs’ back-to-back Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) co-championships and ninth NCAA berth in ten years.  This three-time First Team All-SCIAC honoree also helped Redlands achieve one of its highest rankings during the 2009 season at No. 8. 


Currently, Sumida is one of three women’s tennis players at Redlands who are looking forward to the NCAA Individual Championships, which begin on May 22 in Lawrenceville, GA.  She advances to the tournament as one of 32 singles competitors and joins Waters as one of 16 doubles duos.


In the classroom, Sumida boasts a 3.48 cumulative GPA as a Psychology major.  In her spare time, she serves the community by volunteering at Inland Temporary Homes, which offers 90 days of shelter for homeless families with children under the age of 17.


Last season, Sumida was named the ITA West Region Player to Watch.