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Feb. 27, 2007

Athletes of the Week

Jessica Davenport, a senior on the women’s basketball team, ledthe Buckeyes to their third consecutive Big Ten title with 26- and25-point performances against Penn State Thursday and at MichiganSunday. Davenport’s 26-point game helped Ohio State clinch a sharefor the Big Ten title against the Lady Lions. She also led allplayers with eight rebounds and four assists. Sunday, Davenportposted double-double No. 46 of her career as she added 15 reboundsand turned away a pair of Michigan shot attempts. For the week,Davenport averaged 25.5 points on 17-of-30 (.567) shooting. Shealso posted 11.5 rebounds per contest. For her efforts, Davenportearned her 14th career Big Ten player of the week award, whichranks second all-time. Junior Anthony Cole, who won the 200-meterdash, took second in the 60-meter dash tying his season-best timeof 6.66. With the NCAA provisional mark, Cole owns the second besttime in the 60-m dash in Ohio State history. The time is only .01seconds off the school record set by John Burrell in 1995. Cole wonthe 200-meter dash in a season-best time of 21.18 and was namedfirst team All-Big Ten. This is Cole’s second Big Ten championship,adding to his 60-meter title in 2004. Cole’s time in the 60m is thetied for 15th in the country and his time in the 200m is the 18thbest time in the country this year.

Athletics Good Stuff

Voters in the Associated Press men’s college basketball pollpicked the men’s basketball team for the No. 1 spot in its weeklypoll for the first time since 1962 Monday. Ohio State last played agame as the AP No. 1 team March 24, 1962 in the NCAA title gamethat year. Ohio State is 49-3 all-time when ranked No. 1 in the APpoll after first reaching the top spot before a Dec. 17, 1960 win(93-82) at Wichita State.

Ohio State has been rated No. 1 in the ESPN/USA Today coaches’ poll in three games, all this season, with a 2-1 record in those outings. Overall, Ohio State is 51-4 when playing in games as the No. 1-rated team nationally. With the win Sunday vs. No. 1 (AP) Wisconsin, Ohio State owns an 8-9 record all-time when facing the top-ranked team nationally (AP). The Buckeyes have won six of the last seven and four-consecutive games in Columbus against No. 1-ranked teams in the AP poll.

Greg Oden shares Big Ten Player of the Week laurels with Drew Neitzel of Michigan State after helping the Buckeyes to a pair of home wins as Ohio State clinched the outright Big Ten title for the second-consecutive year. The freshman center registered 11 points while adding five rebounds in a 49-48 victory over No. 1/2 Wisconsin Sunday. Oden began the week by tallying his ninth double-double of the season with 17 points and 14 rebounds against Penn State. For the week, he averaged 14 points and 9.5 rebounds per game, while blocking seven shots. The Indianapolis native also connected on 58.8 percent of his shots (10-of-17) and 66.7 percent of his free throws (8-of-12). Oden, who currently leads the Big Ten in rebounds (9.5 rpg) and ranks seventh in scoring (15.3 ppg), picks up his second conference weekly accolade and fourth for the Buckeyes this season.

The No. 5/6 ranked women’s basketball team closed the regularseason with a 26-2 overall record and a 15-1 conference mark toclaim its third Big Ten title in a row. The senior class ofStephanie Blanton, Jessica Davenport and Brandie Hoskins celebratedtheir final game at Value City Arena Thursday with a 78-61 victoryover Penn State. Davenport had 26 points as the Buckeyes clinched ashare of the Big Ten crown. Sunday, Davenport netted 25 points in a72-58 victory at Michigan, which gave Ohio State ownership of theoutright league title.

The Buckeyes head to Indianapolis this weekend for the 2007 Big Ten Tournament. They will face the winner of the Iowa vs. Indiana first-round game at 6 p.m. Friday in Conseco Fieldhouse.

The men’s hockey team split its series with Michigan to wrap upregular-season play. The Buckeyes lost to the Wolverines Friday,4-3, before coming from behind to win 6-5 Saturday. On Senior NightSaturday, the Buckeye seniors scored five of the team’s six goals,including Mathieu Beaudoin’s gamewinner with 1:30 remaining inregulation, and senior Andrew Schembri had a career-best fourassists. Junior Jason DeSantis was named CCHA Defenseman of theWeek after scoring twice in the series.

The No. 7-seed Buckeyes and No. 10-seed Wildcats will meet in a best-of-three series. The games will be held at 7:05 p.m. Friday and Saturday in the OSU Ice Rink. If necessary, game three will be Sunday, at a time to be determined.

The No. 9/10 women’s hockey team swept Minnesota State in afirst round series of the WCHA playoffs, Feb. 23-24 at OSU IceRink. Senior defenseman Amber Bowman scored the lone goal of thegame Friday as classmate Erika Vanderveer stopped all 20 shotsfaced for her fourth shutout of the season in the 1-0 victory. Inthe game Saturday, the Buckeyes built four one-goal leads, but theMavericks responded each time and the game went into overtime tiedat 4-all. Junior defenseman Lisa Chesson scored 9:03 into the extrasession to advance Ohio State to the semifinal game of the 2007WCHA Playoff Championships. Sophomore Hayley Klassen scored herfirst career hat trick in game two with junior Shelby Aldousassisting her on all three goals, and senior Lacey Schultz scoredher first goal in 144 games played.

Ohio State, the fourth seed in the tournament, will play No. 1-seed Wisconsin in a semifinal game Saturday at 1 p.m. at Ridder Arena on the University of Minnesota campus.

The wrestling team will travel to East Lansing, Mich., for theBig Ten championships Saturday and Sunday at the Breslin Center.Hosted by Michigan State University, the event will crown one teamchampion, as well as a winner in each of the 10 weight classes. TheTop 7 finishers will advance to the 2007 NCAA Division Ichampionships in Detroit.

Seven Buckeye wrestlers are seeded in the Top 8. Freshmen Lance Palmer and Mike Pucillo lead the Buckeye contingent as No. 3 seeds, at 149 and 184 pounds, respectively. J.D. Bergman is the fourth seed at 197 pounds, while classmate Chris Vondruska is the fifth seed at 165 pounds. J Jaggers earned a No. 7 seed at 141 pounds. T.J. Enright and Corey Morrison are the eighth seeds at 133 and 285 pounds, respectively.

The seventh-ranked men’s volleyball (13-1), with a 3-0 win overLewis and a 3-1 victory over sixth-ranked IPFW stands alone infirst place (4-0) in the Midwestern Intercollegiate VolleyballAssociation. Dan Meske had 18.5 points in the Lewis match with JohnAlbertson adding 14.0 and Sam Stevens 13.5. Meske had a career-high23.5 points in the win over IFPW and was named the MidwesternIntercollegiate Volleyball Association Shondell/Dunlap Player ofthe Week. Stevens added 19.5, Albertson 15 and Robbie Klein, 11.5Albertson tied his career-high with 11 total blocks (one solo and10 assists) against the Mastodons. The week Ohio State will havenon-conference matches at Rutgers-Newark Friday and at George MasonSunday The No. 2 men’s tennis team handed No. 20 LSU its first lossof the season in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday. The Buckeyes beat theTigers 4-2 to improve to 11-1 on the year, and 3-1 against teamsform the Southeastern Conference (Tennessee 4-0, Kentucky 6-1,Georgia 0-4). OSU has won the last two meetings between theschools, winning a 6-1 decision last year on Feb. 12 in Columbus.LSU holds the edge in the all-time series 6-2. Ohio State hasoutscored opponents 63-11 this season. Opposing teams have managedto take only 35 of 169 singles sets from the Buckeyes. The Buckeyesreturn home to begin the defense of its 2006 Big Ten Title whenthey face No. 63 Indiana March 3 at the Jesse Owens West TennisCenter in Columbus. The women’s tennis team played three matches inKentucky last weekend. The squad lost a neutral-site match toAuburn before downing Louisville, 5-2, and Eastern Kentucky, 7-0.Sophomore Julie Voss had a team-best three singles wins, whileKristin Messmer and Ciara Finucane were 3-0 together and doublesand 2-0 in singles each.

The team returns home for two matches this weekend, hosting DePaul at 3 p.m. Friday and Wisconsin in the Big Ten opener at 11 a.m. Sunday. Both matches will be held at Jesse Owens West Tennis Center.

The men’s track and field team finished fourth with 84 teampoints at the 2007 Big Ten Indoor Championships Sunday at Indiana’sHarry Gladstein Fieldhouse in Bloomington, Ind. Second-rankedWisconsin won the team title with 120 points. Fourth place wastwo-spot improvement upon Ohio State’s finish last year. TheBuckeyes were led on day two by sophomore Jeff See, who won themile (4.04.16), and junior Anthony Cole, who won the 200-meter(21.18) dash and took second in the 60-meter dash (6.66). Thewomen’s track and field team finished seventh Sunday at the 2007Big Ten Indoor Championships at Illinois in the Armory Fieldhousein Champagne, Ill. The Buckeyes were led by Jenna Harris, who wonthe 60-meter dash with a season-best time of 7.35, and came infifth in the 200-meter dash with a time of 24.04. Also on thetrack, Ayrizanna Favours took third in the 400-meter dash with atime of 53.88. Favours then took third in the 200-meter dash with aNCAA provisional time of 24.00. In addition, the women’s4x400-meter relay team of Chandra Krempel, Favours, Harris andAshley Caldwell came in third with a time of 3:40.00. The baseballteam is 1-3 this season after finishing third this past weekend atthe Buckeye Baseball Classic at the New York Yankees PlayerDevelopment Complex in Tampa, Fla. Ohio State opened the seasonFriday with an 8-6 win over James Madison, but lost its final threegames, including a doubleheader to Kansas State (5-4 and 5-2) and asingle game vs. Seton Hall (6-5). Dan DeLucia won his 20th game asa Buckeye as the opening-day starter. Relief pitchers were taggedwith the three losses. Third baseman Tony Kennedy batted .500 inthe four games (6-for-12) and drove in one run while scoring threetimes. First baseman Justin Miller also had six hits in batting.429 (6-for-14). J.B. Shuck and Jason Zoeller each batted in fourruns. Shuck batted .364 in three games at the plate before startingthe weekend finale against Seton Hall. He went 7.2 innings andallowed four runs on seven hits with four strikeouts to joinKennedy on the all-tournament team. They were joined by catcherEric Fryer, who had five hits, and pitcher Cory Luebke, who startgame one of the doubleheader vs. Kansas State. He allowed threeruns (one earned) on four hits while striking out five. Ohio Statewill play Georgetown, Duquesne and Lehigh this weekend at JackRussell Stadium in Clearwater.

The Buckeyes will meet the Hoyas Friday at 7 p.m. and Duquesne Saturday at 1 p.m. The weekend concludes Sunday with a 10 a.m. first pitch vs. Lehigh.

The softball team went 3-2 and knocked off two ranked teams atthe Palm Springs Classic last weekend. The Buckeyes (5-5 overall)topped BYU, No. 22 Fresno State and No. 17 Cal to collect theirfirst wins over ranked teams in back-to-back days on a neutral sitesince 2004. During the five games, sophomore Courtney Pruner ledthe team offensively with a .444 average, while sophomore KimReeder went 2-1 in the circle. Overall, junior Liz Caputo owns ateam-best .360 average and freshman Sam Harder has hit a team-highfive home runs. This week, Ohio State travels to the UAB Magic CityClassic in Birmingham, Ala. Rifle finished second in air rifle(1,513) and fifth in smallbore rifle (2,162) at the WesternIntercollegiate Rifle Conference Championships hosted by theBuckeyes. Akron was first in both events, scoring a 1,514 in airrifle and 2,234 in smallbore rifle. Buckeye Steven Nozaki was OSU’stop finisher (14th) in smallbore rifle with a 551 mark. OhioState’s Jeff Naswadi was 24th with a 542 and Kelly Lake, 25th at541. Nozaki finished sixth in air rifle with a 381 score. OSU’sLake was ninth and Naswadi, 10th with 379 scores. Lake was named tothe first team WIRC All-Conference Air Rifle team with Nozaki namedto the second team. The fencing team will aim for itsfifth-consecutive Midwest Fencing Conference championship thisweekend when the event gets underway at Notre Dame. The Buckeyes’men’s and women’s teams are both ranked No. 2 in the nation. TheNo. 4 men’s gymnastics team (5-3 overall; 1-1 Big Ten) dropped adual to No. 2 Penn State, 218.15-215.6, Saturday at Rec Hall inUniversity Park, Pa. Three Buckeyes combined to notch fourindividual event wins for the squad. With season highs, JimmyWickham won floor with a score of 9.6, Pejman Ebrahimi won vaultwith a 9.25 and Willie Ito won both parallel bars and high bar witha 9.5 and 9.55, respectively.

The Buckeye gymnasts remain on the road as they face two-time defending NCAA Champions Oklahoma at 8 p.m. EST March 3 at McCasland Field House in Norman, Okla.

No. 18 women’s gymnastics fell at No. 16 Penn State196.450-194.825 Saturday. The Buckeyes scored a 49.100 on bothfloor and bars, which earned a season best on floor and tied aseason high on bars. Sophomore Alyssa Meyer led the Buckeyes with afirst place finish in the all-around with a 39.025.

The squad will conclude its home season in St. John Arena this weekend competing first Friday at 7 p.m. against No. 13 Denver. The Buckeyes close with Senior Day Sunday at 2 p.m. in a quad-meet with No. 21 West Virginia, Kentucky and George Washington.

The men’s lacrosse team was 2-0 last weekend, with a 19-1victory over Wagner and 13-4 win against Harvard. Patrick Hansenand Jeff Ryan led the Buckeyes with three goals each against theSeahawks, while Joel Dalgarno had a goal and three assists. Againstthe Crimson, Kevin Buchanan had a career-best six assists and agame-high seven points and Ryan had four goals.

The Buckeyes return to action against Harvard at noon Saturday at North Turf Field.

Women’s lacrosse (1-0) opened the 2007 season with a 15-3 roadvictory at Robert Morris. Kristen Slahor had a career-high sevenpoints (4-3) with Kelly Haggerty (2-1) and Natale Miller (1-2)adding three points each. Slahor scored OSU’s first two goals aspart of a six-goal run to open the game. OSU goalie Kristen Gilweepicked up the win, playing 53:40, making six saves and giving upthree goals. Joy DeMarco played the final 6:20 in goal with nosaves and no goals against. Ohio State returns to action on March 7when they host Duquesne at 4 p.m. The men’s golf team finished inninth place at the Rio Pinar Intercollegiate Feb. 20. The Buckeyesshot rounds of 299-293-291 (883) over the two-day, 54-hole event atthe Rio Pinar Country Club (par 72, 6,978) in Orlando, Fla. Thismarks the first tournament of the season that the Buckeyes shot allrounds under 300. Freshman Patrick Simard (Marbella, Spain/I.E.S.Ortega & Gasset) led the Buckeyes and had his best collegiatefinish as he tied for seventh and shot a tournament total 217(73-74-70). The 1-over score for Simard was the best by a Buckeyethis season. Simard also tied for fourth in total birdies (12). TheBuckeyes return to action March 17-18 at the E-Z Go Chris SchenkelInvitational in West Lafayette, Ind. The women’s golf team sent twoindividuals to Destin, Fla., Feb. 24-26 to compete in the ChryslerChallenge at the par-72 Baytowne Golf Course. Haley Brown andJessica Hauser represented the Buckeyes and both found successfinishing in the top 20. Brown led the two golfers finishing 12thin the field of 57, shooting a 233. Hauser rounded out the top 20finishing 19th and shooting a 236. The Chrysler Challengerepresents both Brown and Hauser’s best finish of their Buckeyecareers.

The team will be back in action as a squad March 5-6 in Orlando, Fla. with competition in the UCF Challenge.

Ohio State Athletics Schedule
Feb. 28 – March 7

March 2
Women’s Basketball vs. TBA, 6 p.m.
Indianapolis, Ind.

Baseball vs. Georgetown, 7 p.m.
Clearwater, Fla.

Women’s Tennis vs. DePaul, 3 p.m.
Columbus, Ohio
Jesse Owens West Tennis Center

Women’s Gymnastics vs. Denver, 7 p.m.
Columbus, Ohio
St. John Arena

Men’s Volleyball at Rutgers-Newark, 7 p.m.
Newark, N.J.

Men’s Ice Hockey vs. Northern Michigan, 7:05 p.m.
Columbus, Ohio
OSU Ice Rink

Women’s Track at Notre Dame Last Chance, All Day
South Bend, Ind.

Men’s Track at Notre Dame Last Chance, All Day
South Bend, Ind.

Men’s Swimming and Diving at NCAA Diving Zones, All Day
Ann Arbor, Mich.

March 3
Men’s Basketball at Michigan, 4 p.m.
Ann Arbor, Michigan

Women’s Basketball vs. TBA, TBA
Indianapolis, Ind.

Baseball vs. Duquesne, 1 p.m.
Clearwater, Fla.

Softball vs. Samford, 1 p.m.
Birmingham, Ala.

Softball at UAB, 5 p.m.
Birmingham, Ala.

Men’s Tennis vs. Indiana, Noon
Columbus, Ohio
Jesse Owens West Recreation Center

Men’s Lacrosse vs. Bucknell, Noon
Columbus, Ohio
North Turf Field

Synchronized Swimming at U.S. Collegiate Regionals, 2 p.m.
Columbus, Ohio
Bill and Mae McCorkle Aquatics Pavilion

Men’s Gymnastics at Oklahoma, 7 p.m.
Norman, Okla.

Men’s Ice Hockey vs. Northern Michigan, 7:05 p.m.
Columbus, Ohio
OSU Ice Rink

Women’s Track at Notre Dame Last Chance, All Day
South Bend, Ind.

Men’s Track at Notre Dame Last Chance, All Day
South Bend, Ind.

Wrestling at Big Ten Championships, All Day
East Lansing, Mich.

Men’s Swimming and Diving at NCAA Diving Zones, All Day
Ann Arbor, Mich.

Women’s Ice Hockey at WCHA Championship, TBA
Minneapolis, Minn.

Fencing at Midwest Conference, TBA
South Bend, Ind.

March 4
Baseball at Lehigh, 10 a.m.
Clearwater, Fla.

Softball at Birmingham-Southern, 10 a.m.
Birmingham, Ala.

Women’s Tennis vs. Wisconsin, 11 a.m.
Columbus, Ohio
Jesse Owens West Tennis Center

Women’s Gymnastics vs. Kentucky, W. Virginia and George Washington, 2 p.m.
Columbus, Ohio
St. John Arena

Men’s Volleyball at George Mason, 2 p.m.
Fairfax, Va.

Women’s Ice Hockey at WCHA Championship, TBA
Minneapolis, Minn.

Wrestling at Big Ten Championships, All Day
East Lansing, Mich.

Fencing at Midwest Conference, TBA
South Bend, Ind.

Men’s Ice Hockey vs. Northern Michigan, 7:05 p.m.
Columbus, Ohio
OSU Ice Rink

Men’s Swimming and Diving at NCAA Diving Zones, All Day
Ann Arbor, Mich.

March 5
Women’s Golf at UCF Challenge, All Day
Orlando, Fla.

March 6
Women’s Golf at UCF Challenge, All Day
Orlando, Fla.

March 7
Women’s Lacrosse vs. Duquesne, 4 p.m.
Columbus, Ohio
North Turf Field