The football team held off a late fourth-quarter rally and defeated Rhodes College, 28-21, Oct. 4 at Francis Field. The Bears had a 21-10 lead heading into the fourth quarter before Rhodes began the comeback. Midway through the fourth quarter, Rhodes tied the game at 21. But after the tying field goal, Bears senior Blake Westra had a season-long 44-yard return on the ensuing kickoff, which set up the Bears five-play drive for the game-winning touchdown. Junior Adam Meranda connected with sophomore Brad Duesing a 20-yard reception, and junior Kevin McCarthy ran for 19 to the Rhodes 2-yard line. Meranda scored on a 2-yard run on the next play to give WUSTL a 28-21 lead. Duesing finished the game with 11 catches for a season-high 189 yards as he moved into seventh place all-time at the University with 107 career receptions. Meranda finished 22 of 36 for 333 yards and two touchdowns. McCarthy led the Bears on the ground with 18 carries for 76 yards and a touchdown.
The No. 2-ranked volleyball team went 3-0, defeating Case Western Reserve University, 3-0, the University of Rochester, 3-1 and the University of Chicago, 3-0, at the University Athletic Association Round Robin No. 1. The Bears (15-3, 3-0 UAA) hit a season-best .477 against Rochester.
The men’s soccer team dropped its UAA opener Oct. 5, 1-0 against 13th-ranked and undefeated Carnegie Mellon University. After battling to a 0-0 standstill for more than half the game, CMU’s Jonathan Browne netted the game-winning goal at the 68:37 mark to secure the win. Washington U. and CMU had seven shots apiece, but the Tartans held a 7-3 corner kick advantage.
The women’s soccer team won its UAA opener 2-0 over Carnegie Mellon University Oct. 5 at Francis Field. Freshman Sara Schroeder scored both goals for the Bears, who extended their unbeaten streak to 10 games. WUSTL has not lost since a season-opening 5-0 setback at No. 2 Wheaton College. Schroeder got the Bears on the board in the ninth minute as she picked up a lose ball in the Carnegie Mellon box and beat goalkeeper Megan Monroe with a shot to the right corner.
The men’s cross country team placed fourth of 10 teams Oct. 4 at the Indiana State Invitational in Terre Haute, Ind. Sophomore Brennan Bonner paced the Bears in the 8K run, completing the course in 26:02 and placing 17th. Classmate Greg Reindl finished 22nd in 26:18, and senior Darius Viet also cracked the top-30, posting a 26:35 mark to finish 27th. The Bears registered 100 team points, just two points shy of third place and host Indiana State. On the women’s side, freshman Elizabeth Herndon led the Bears, finishing the 6K course in 23:26.54 to take 28th place. WUSTL placed eighth. Ohio State won the team title.
Top-seeded Rathi Mani and Lauren Zwick dropped a three-set heartbreaker to Erin Coughlin and Lauren Gerlach of Denison in the final of the women’s tennis main doubles draw at the 2003 Intercollegiate Tennis Association Omni Central Region Championships Oct. 5. After taking the first set 6-2, Mani and Zwick fell behind 2-5 in the second. However, they won four of the next five games to force a tiebreaker before Denison prevailed 7-6 and evened the match at one set apiece.
The men’s and women’s swimming and diving team opened the 2003-04 season Oct. 4 against Saint Louis University at Millstone Pool. Despite numerous strong individual efforts, the Bears women fell 191-102 and the men lost 172-119. On the men’s side, sophomore Eric Triebe won the 100-yard breaststroke in 59.40, five seconds ahead of the second-place finisher. He also won the 50 freestyle (21.58) and the 200 breaststroke (2:14.96). Classmate Michael Slavik edged SLU’s Christopher Johansen in the 200 free, and followed that with a win in the 100 free. Sophomore Tracey Hendrickson paced the Bears women, finishing first in the 1,000 freestyle. Hendrickson recorded a pool record time of 10:37.56. She also won the 500 free (5:14.92).
Paul Thornton has been named the men’s and women’s track and field coach. Thornton replaces Steve Rubin, who took a similar position at Florida International University. Thornton comes to Washington University from Saint Mary’s University in Winona, Minn., where he had been the Cardinals head men’s and women’s coach for the past three seasons. During his tenure, Thornton coached one All-American, one Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) record holder, 14 MIAC champions and was a part of 35 school records.