Keeping up with the Colonels: Nov. 14

Keeping up with the Colonels: Nov. 14

Keeping up with the Colonels is your one-stop spot to catch up with any of the Centre Athletics action you may have missed from the past week and look ahead to the next week. This week we look back at the fall sports nearing the ends of their seasons and the beginning of basketball season.





The Centre cross country teams traveled to Christopher Newport University for the NCAA South/Southeast Regional Championships. The Colonels put up a strong showing, finishing third on the women's side and tenth on the men's side. Individually, Nathan Riggs advanced to his third consecutive NCAA Finals after placing 11th at the Regionals. The Centre women will be sending two runners to the national finals as Annie Rodenfels finished second overall and Courtney Gibson finished tenth. The aforementioned runners as well as freshman Hallie Searcy all earned All-Region honors by virtue of their finishes in the top 30, with Searcy ranking third among freshmen in the field.



Centre field hockey opened NCAA Tournament action at the friendly confines of the South Turf field on Wednesday as they welcomed the Washington & Jefferson Presidents to Danville. Playing in front of a raucous home crowd, the Colonels rallied from behind twice with a pair of Brooklyn Bell goals, adding to her single season SAA record. As the game went into overtime, Savannah Elpers, who assisted on both of Bell's goals earlier in the contest, scored the golden goal three minutes into the extra session to give Centre a memorable 3-2 victory. The win propelled Centre into the Sweet 16 at the College of New Jersey, where the Colonels faced seventh-ranked MIT. Natascha Loeb gave the Colonels an early advantage and Hayley Barker's goal gave the Colonels a 2-0 lead with 20 minutes left. MIT scored one goal to cut the deficit in half, but Centre held on for a 2-1 win, their school record 17th win of the season, advancing to the Elite Eight for the first time in program history. Against fourth-ranked and host school TCNJ, the Colonels' magical 2017 season came to an end, losing by a score of 2-0.


FOOTBALL (9-1, 7-1 SAA)

The Centre football team took care of business on Senior Day, winning its sixth consecutive game to close the season with a 42-17 romp against Birmingham Southern. Centre dominated through the air as Devin Hayes completed just 14 passes, but for 298 yards and four touchdowns. The defense held the Panthers to under 200 yards passing for the game and five different Centre defensive players recorded quarterback sacks.



The Centre women's soccer team began its NCAA Tournament slate with a trip to Ohio Northern to take on Illinois Wesleyan in a rematch of the 2014 Elite Eight. Rachael Boule's goal with just ten seconds remaining in the first half tied the score at 1-1 and gave the Colonels momentum, but Illinois Wesleyan scored with ten minutes left in the match and despite the heroics of Sarah Youkilis in goal – including a save on a penalty kick – the Colonels could not provide the equalizer and eventually fell by a score of 2-1.



The Centre swim teams returned to Boles Natatorium on Friday for a head-to-head SAA meet against the Sewanee Tigers. The Colonels dominated the Tigers, with the men winning 148-79 and the women winning 183-49. The women's meet was particularly tremendous for Centre as the Colonels won every single event that took place.



Nathan Riggs, Cross Country


Riggs made the most of his penultimate cross country meet as a Centre Colonel, completing the 8k course at Christopher Newport in 24:53 flat to finish in 11th place overall at the South/Southeast Regional Championships and punch his ticket to the NCAA Championships for the third year in a row. 2017 also marked the third straight season that Riggs has earned All-Regional Honors.



Annie Rodenfels and Courtney Gibson, Cross Country


Centre will have two women's cross country runners competing in Saturday's NCAA Championships and they share Athlete of the Week honors. Rodenfels advanced to the NCAA Finals for the second year in a row, running a 6k time of 21:10.2 at the South/Southeast Regional Championships, which was good enough for second place overall. Gibson made it to her first ever NCAA Finals by virtue of her finish at the Regional Championships, crossing the finish line in 21:59 to finish tenth overall.



Here is the full slate of events for Centre Athletics in the next seven days.

Wednesday, Nov. 15

Men's Basketball vs. Maryville, 7:30 PM (Wear White)

Friday, Nov. 17

Swimming & Diving @ House of Champions

Women's Basketball vs. Anderson, 7 PM

Saturday, Nov. 18

Cross Country @ NCAA Championships

Swimming & Diving @ House of Champions

Women's Basketball vs. Maryville, 3 PM

Sunday, Nov. 19

Swimming & Diving @ House of Champions

Monday, Nov. 20

Men's Basketball @ Transylvania, 7:30 PM

Tuesday, Nov. 21

Women's Basketball vs. Spalding, 7 PM