Sports update Jan. 18

Celebration of champions
The 2009 NCAA Division III national champion volleyball team will be honored with a Celebration of Champions at 3 p.m. Feb. 7 in the WU Field House. The ceremony will begin promptly following the conclusion of the men’s and women’s basketball doubleheader against Emory University.

As a part of the celebration festivities, WUSTL will honor its 2009 NCAA Division III national runner-up women’s soccer team, which advanced to the NCAA championship game for the first time in program history.

The event will include remarks from Washington University coaches, administrators and student-athletes, a presentation of championship rings to the 2009 volleyball team, and the unveiling of the 2009 national championship banner.

Free national championship posters will be available to all fans in attendance, and a limited number of championship t-shirts will be available to WU students and faculty with an ID. The Bears will hold an autograph session immediately following the event.

The Washington University volleyball team captured its NCAA record 10th national championship with a 3-1 victory over rival Juniata College Nov. 21, 2009, in University Heights, Ohio. It marked the third national championship for WU head coach Rich Luenemann and the team’s first since 2007.

The Bears boasted three American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-America selections last season, with freshman libero Kelly Pang garnering National Freshman of the Year and first-team All-America honors, while senior middle hitter Erin Albers and freshman setter Marilee Fisher were named second-team All-Americans.

Luenemann was named the AVCA Division III National Coach of the Year for the third time in his career.

The women’s soccer team fell to No. 1 and defending national champion Messiah College, 1-0, in the national championship game Dec. 5, 2009, in San Antonio.

The Bears tied a school record with a 17-4-3 overall record, and won their fourth-straight University Athletic Association Championship.

Seniors Libby Held and Caryn Rosoff garnered National Collegiate Soccer Coaches Association of America All-America honors.

Women’s basketball on 11-game winning streak
The No. 3 women’s basketball team pushed its winning streak to 11 with holiday-weekend victories over Brandeis University and New York University.

Senior Zoe Unruh scored 15 points to lead the Bears to a 67-57 win over Brandeis Jan. 15, and graduate student Jaimie McFarlin powered WUSTL past New York, 70-50, with her second double-double of the season, 12 points and 10 rebounds.

Team defense continues to be strength. The Bears have held 14 straight opponents under 40-percent shooting, and nine straight foes to fewer than 60 points.

The win over New York concluded a seven-game home stand for WUSTL, which will play six of its next eight games on the road.

The Bears (13-1, 3-0 UAA) return to action at 6 p.m. (EST) Jan. 22 against Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.

Men’s basketball splits conference games at home
The No. 3 men’s basketball team split a pair of games with Brandeis University and New York University.

Senior Aaron Thompson had 19 points and graduate student Sean Wallis had 10 points and eight assists in a 58-55 overtime loss to Brandeis Jan. 15.

Wallis followed up that performance with 22 points — 13 in the second half — in a 60-57 victory over New York University Jan. 17.

WUSTL (12-2, 2-1 UAA) begins a four-game conference road trip at 8 p.m. (EST) Jan. 22 against Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.