With exciting seasons behind them, the University of Mary Washington’s men’s and women’s basketball teams can look back at what they accomplished and how they can go forward.
Despite a tough 50-48 loss in the Capital Athletic Conference championship at the hands of Marymount University, the women’s team powered to a 22-6 overall record, and 15-1 in the conference, losing in overtime, 61-54, in the second round of the NCAA tournament to the University of Rochester.
Their first-round game was an impressive entry in the 2009-2010 postseason, as the Eagles defeated William Patterson University by a score of 84-53.
Awards were also garnered on members of the women’s team, as sophomores Jenna McRae and Katie Wimmer were named to the 2010 All-Capital Athletic Conference teams, the only underclassmen named to the squad. McRae averaged 13 points and 5 boards a game, while Wimmer notched 12 points and 4 boards per contest.
Freshman and Springfield, Va. native Carol Dye was also named as the Conference’s rookie of the year, starting 16 games and averaging 6 points and 6 rebounds a game, with a 46 per cent shooting percentage. Dye also achieved 625 total minutes of play, averaging 22 minutes per game.
Head Coach Deena Applebury helmed the team for the seventh season, coaching a squad that won all but one game at home, finishing the season with a 10-1 home record. Their only home loss came to Marymount in the conference championship. The Eagles away record was also impressive, as they accomplished a 9-4 road record, along with a 3-1 record in games played on a neutral court.
The men’s squad had an equally impressive 2009-2010 campaign, despite a disappointing 9-15 overall record and 6-10 conference record.
While such numbers may not suggest accomplishment and success, individual performances by members of the men’s squad left plenty of promise for next year’s campaign.
Senior center Brandon Altmann was named as one of 10 finalists for the Jostens Trophy, awarded to the NCAA Division III College Basketball Player of the Year. Along with receiving his second selection to the first-team All-Capital Athletic Conference team, Altmann led the team by averaging a double-double, with 19 points and 10 rebounds per game. Altmann also finished his college career as Mary Washington’s all-time leading shot blocker.
The team itself had several highlights throughout the season, including a dominant 86-58 victory against Stevenson University on Jan. 6. The game was highlighted by the play of sophomore forward Tad Dickman, who scored 19 points in 19 minutes as one of four Eagle players who scored in double figures.
The season began with a thrilling 97-91 double overtime victory against Lynchburg College in the Roanoke Tipoff Tournament, another contest with four Eagles scoring in double figures and freshman forward J.R. Gray achieving a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds, overcoming a 27-point outing by Lynchburg’s Bobby Kaiser. The contest was one of two overtime victories for the Eagles, the second coming in a February matchup against the York College of Pennsylvania. The season unfortunately did not end on as high a note, as the team lost its last three contests, including a 22-point defeat at the hands of St. Mary’s College of Maryland.
Both teams look forward to the 2010-2011 campaign, with growth, development and a return to the dominance of old in mind.