Sports In Review 2013-14

Best Male Athlete

Zach Kerr (#94)
FILE PHOTO
Senior defensive lineman Zach Kerr earned First Team All-CAA honors while at Delaware and just signed an NFL contract with the Indianapolis Colts.

Zach Kerr (Football)

2013 was a pretty good year for defensive lineman Zach Kerr. The senior defensive lineman, who transferred from Maryland after his sophomore year, started all 12 games for the Blue Hens, leading them to a 7-5 record. With 57 total tackles, he garnered First Team All-CAA honors, as well as Second Team Sports Network All-American. His impressive season at Delaware earned him an invitation to the NFL Combine. To top it all off, his work at the Combine, coupled with his performance at Delaware’s Pro Day, caught the attention of a number of NFL teams. On Saturday, Kerr’s hard work and dedication was rewarded when he signed as a free agent with the Indianapolis Colts. Kerr will look to follow in the footsteps of his former Delaware teammate, linebacker Paul Worrilow, who was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Atlanta Falcons in 2013 and went on to lead the team in tackles last season. As he pursues a career in the NFL, Kerr leaves behind a legacy that will live on in Blue Hens history.

DevonSaddler2
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Senior guard Devon Saddler came back from suspension to lead the team to the NCAA Tournament.

Devon Saddler (Basketball)

Devon Saddler’s fourth and final season got off to a rocky start. Delaware’s third-year captain was suspended for a month just two games into the year. Despite this, the senior guard returned to the team more determined and ready to lead. When starters Jarvis Threatt and Marvin King-Davis were suspended mid season, Saddler stepped up and led the team to a 7-2 conference record in their absences. Putting the team on his back for much of the season, Saddler led the Blue Hens to a CAA championship and a berth in the NCAA tournament. By the end of the season, Saddler’s honors included being named to the All-CAA first team, the CAA All-Tournament team and the Lou Henson All-America team. Additionally, he is the second-leading active points scorer in Division I history behind only Creighton’s Doug McDermott. Saddler finishes his Delaware career as the Blue Hens all-time leading scorer.

BrianKormondy
Courtesy of Mark Campbell/BlueHens.com
Junior Midfielder Brian Kormondy assisted the Delaware men’s lacrosse team’s run to the CAA semifinals.

Brian Kormondy (Lacrosse)

In the last game of the regular season, the Delaware men’s lacrosse team found themselves needing a victory against UMass to make the CAA tournament. Brian Kormondy––the team’s own Mr. Reliable––delivered. The junior midfielder’s three assists helped lead the team to a 15-7 win and a berth in the tournament. Though the team went on to lose a heartbreaker to Hofstra in the CAA semifinals, Kormondy has been a model of consistency for the Blue Hens all year. He recorded a point in every game this season and finished with an impressive 17 goals and 13 assists in 15 games. The junior was one of two Blue Hens named to the first team All-CAA squad. With one more year of eligibility, Kormondy will look to take his team even further next season.

Honorable Mention: Dan Keane (Lacrosse), Jarvis Threatt (Basketball)
Meghan O’Donnell is the new managing sports editor of The Review for the fall of 2014. Send any questions or comments to mod@udel.edu.

Best Male Newcomer

GuillermoDelgado
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Guillermo Delgado burst onto the scene, scoring a Delaware freshman record 14 goals and leading the team to 14-5-1 record.

Guillermo Delgado (Soccer)

Guillermo Delgado faced a more difficult transition than most college freshmen. The native of Tres Cantos, Spain moved to the United States last summer to further his education—and his soccer career—at the university. Confronted with the daunting task of adjusting to a new language, a new country and a new school, the freshman forward appeared unfazed. He scored his first goal just 17 minutes into his Delaware career. His 15 goals ranked fourth in all of Division I, and he set the Delaware record for goals and points by a freshman. Starting in all 20 games this season, Delgado helped the team to a 14-5-1 record, its best ever. The striker wracked up the awards at the end of the season, being named CAA Rookie of the Year, first team All-CAA, first team All-East (ECAC) and second team NSCAA All-American. With Delgado shouldering the offensive burden, the team earned a berth in the NCAA tournament. Despite an early exit thanks to a controversial penalty, the Blue Hens are hoping Delgado’s success will continue into next year.

DavonUsher2
FILE PHOTO
Senior guard Davon Usher came from Mississipi Valley State to help the men’s basketball team to the NCAA Tournament.

Davon Usher (Basketball)

It is hard to imagine what Delaware’s season would have been like without Davon Usher. That’s because the senior guard, who transferred from Mississippi Valley State, was central to the Blue Hens success. Starting all 35 games for the team, Usher instantly gelled with his new teammates. The guard averaged 19.4 points per game. Over a five game stretch against all conference opponents late in the season, Usher led the team to a 4-1 record while averaging 30.4 points per game. He put up 42 and 34 points against the College of Charleston and JMU respectively. Named to the first team All-CAA team, he was a critical piece in the Blue Hens’ run to the CAA championship game. Usher’s Delaware career, while short, will be remembered as one of the best in recent history.

NormDonkin
Courtesy of Mark Campbell/BlueHens.com
Junior outfielder Norm Donkin arrived from Harford Community College to lead the Blue Hens in offensive categories.

Norm Donkin – (Baseball)

After two seasons at Harford Community College, junior outfielder Norm Donkin took the CAA by storm this year. The rightfielder leads the Blue Hens in batting average, RBI, runs, hits and doubles. In fact, his 16 doubles are good enough for third in the conference. While his offensive prowess has certainly helped Delaware, he had made some key defensive plays throughout the year as well. Donkin’s emergence has the Blue Hens currently sitting in fourth place in the CAA and poised to make a run in the tournament. With six regular season games remaining, Donkin will be the key to his team’s future success.

Honorable Mention: Jaime Martinez (Soccer), Logan Aunon (Lacrosse)
Meghan O’Donnell is the new managing sports editor of The Review for the fall of 2014. Send any questions or comments to mod@udel.edu.

Best Female Athlete

KelseyBuchanan
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After losing 5 seniors from last year’s team, senior center Kelsey Buchanan stepped in to lead a young Lady Hens squad to the finals of the CAA tournament.

Kelsey Buchanan (Basketball):

Having played with such Lady Hens’ luminaries as Kayla Miller, Trumae Lucas and Elena Delle Donne, the senior center was able to truly show her skill this year. She led a young team in a rebuilding process to a 20-11 overall (10-6 CAA) record, the CAA Finals and the Women’s Postseason National Invitation Tournament, as well as being named first-team All-CAA. It wasn’t an easy task, but she made it look effortless and stepped up to the plate in a way she never really had to before. In her previous three seasons as part of Delaware’s team, the 6-foot-3 Buchanan started in just four of 84 games, averaging 2.5 points and 2.2 rebounds. This season, she started all 31 games, averaging 17.1 points and 8.5 rebounds a game. She scored 20 or more points 11 times and had 26 double-figure games. On top of that, she showed she could still evolve as a player. When head coach Tina Martin said the team needed to work on “rebounds and toughness,” Buchanan responded in a big way, showing she could mix it up in the paint later on in the year. In addition to her accomplishments on the court, she stepped into the leadership role off it. She assisted her teammates with improving their games, including freshman forward Hannah Jardine and redshirt freshman guard Jodi Salyer. It was always going to be a difficult road for the team to navigate once Delle Donne left, but Buchanan showed the way and put them back on track for more success.

MichaelaPatzner2
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Sophomore midfielder Michaela Patzner had 41 points this season.

Michaela Patzner (Field Hockey):

In her second season here at Delaware, Patzner has shown she has not suffered a “sophomore slump”—in fact, she has improved. In her freshman year, the midfielder recorded 16 points from seven goals and two assists after playing in every game that year for the Lady Hens. This season, she had 41 points from 16 goals and nine assists, leading the team. She had five game-winning goals this year, one of which came with 96 seconds left against James Madison. In addition to scoring, Patzner makes her presence known on the field as a tough player for the Lady Hens, making sure the opposing team has a hard time getting the ball away from her. It is partly because of this that Delaware had a 17-5 overall record and was undefeated in the CAA. On home ground at Rullo Stadium for the CAA Tournament, Patzner showed her skill, putting up a goal in both the semifinal and final. With two years left, the question isn’t “Will she keep her form up?” Rather, the question is “what will she do next?”

LindsayrPrettyman
Courtesy of Mark Campbell/BlueHens.com
Senior Lindsay Prettyman qualified for the NCAA Cross Country Championships as well as helping the outdoor track and field team win the CAA Championships.

Lindsay Prettyman (Cross Country, Track and Field)

Prettyman’s hard work this season paid off in a big way, as she had her annus mirabilis. In the fall, the senior won the Blue-Gold Invitational cross country race, at White Clay Creek State Park. On the same course a month earlier, she finished second in the Delaware Invitational. Despite dropping out of the CAA Championship meet at Towson, she qualified for the NCAA Championships by placing 20th in the NCAA mid-Atlantic Regionals in Bethlehem, Pa., becoming the first Delaware runner to make the NCAA Championships in 30 years. Prettyman placed 117th overall after passing 100 runners in the last four kilometers of the course. She continued her run of good form in the spring, leading the team to its first-ever CAA Championship, as well as its first since 1991. She won two events and was named the tournament MVP. Though she is leaving Delaware, she has left a fine legacy behind.

Honorable Mention: Caitlin McCartney (Lacrosse)
Jack Cobourn is the new managing sports editor of The Review for the fall of 2014. Send any questions or comments to jclark@udel.edu.

Best Female Newcomer

CaseyLyons
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Sophomore transfer Casey Lyons scored in every game this year for the Blue Hens, earning her First-Team All CAA honors.

Casey Lyons (Lacrosse):

The Canadian national anthem became a common goal song in Delaware Stadium this season as attacker Casey Lyons, who hails from Georgetown, Ontario, put the ball in the back of the net at an alarming rate. The sophomore transfer from Ohio State made a major impact for the Lady Hens this season, registering 36 goals—third-most on the team—and leading the team in assists. Having worked with head coach Kateri Linville on the Canadian Under-19 team, which won the bronze medal in the 2011 International Federation of Women’s Lacrosse Associations World Championship in Hannover, Germany, Lyons fit in well with the Delaware team, scoring in every game this season. Linville said Lyons has great vision on the field and has a strong belief in herself. That self belief helped Lyons become the first player since 1985 to score five or more goals in three consecutive games, doing so against LaSalle, Villanova and Virginia Tech, respectively. Though the Lady Hens fell to James Madison in the CAA semifinals, Lyons still had a goal and two assists in the game. Her performances this season earned her a first-team All-CAA berth, as well as an Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association All-Region honors. As Linville said earlier in the year, “The best is yet to come,” and there is no doubting Casey Lyons can improve on her first year in a Delaware uniform.

EsmeePeet
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Freshman midfielder Esmée Peet arrived from the Netherlands to assist the Lady Hens to the NCAA Tournament.

Esmée Peet (Field Hockey):

Having to adapt to the college game is tough enough without having to adapt to a whole new country, but Esmée Peet did just that this season and did it well. The freshman midfielder from Zeewolde, Netherlands reeled in the many accolades a player of her skill should earn. Synapse Sports named her Division I Rookie of the Year, while she also earned second-team All-American and All-Rookie team honors. In addition, she was named as a first-team All-CAA member and National Field Hockey Coaches Association Division I All-Mid-Atlantic Region first team honors. Peet scored 13 goals and had six assists for 32 points during the season, good enough for second on the Delaware team’s scoring list, and beating the single-season scoring record for a Delaware freshman by eight points. Peet scored in both the CAA semifinals and final, as well as scoring in the NCAA first-round loss to North Carolina, in addition to providing numerous assists. A tough and determined player on the field, Peet is kind and good-natured off it. If ever there were a player who provides a good scoring companion to Michaela Patzner, it is Esmée Peet.

Hannah Jardine
Courtesy BlueHens.com
Freshman forward Hannah Jardine helped the Delaware women’s basketball team to a 20-11 overall record.

Hannah Jardine (Women’s Basketball):

Continuing the theme of international players thriving in Blue Hens uniforms, the 6-foot-1 freshman forward started 18 of 29 games she played in for the Lady Hens this season, scoring 4.8 points in 24.1 minutes a game. Jardine, a native of St. John’s, Newfoundland, earned the Joyce Perry Coaches Award at the Delaware awards banquet, as well as being named CAA Rookie of the Week for Feb. 3. Having come from a country where basketball is a minor sport, head coach Tina Martin said she found Jardine playing at a couple Amateur Athletics Union tournaments and invited her to tour Delaware. Jardine, who also looked at James Madison, said she fit in with the team and coaches and decided to stay. It’s a good thing she did because she will be a player to look out for in the coming years.

Honorable Mention: Jodi Salyer (Women’s Basketball)
Jack Cobourn is the new managing sports editor of The Review for the fall of 2014. Send any questions or comments to jclark@udel.edu

Best Coach

MonteRoss
Courtesy of WDEL.com
In his 8th year with the team, Ross guided the Blue Hens to a CAA title and a berth in the NCAA tournament.

Monté Ross (Men’s Basketball):

If ever there was a coach who symbolized a season’s efforts, it has to be Monté Ross. Now in his eighth season as head coach of the Delaware men’s basketball program, Ross showed his skill in getting the Blue Hens to the first round of the NCAA Tournament in Spokane, Wash., where the team fell to No. 4-ranked Michigan State, 93-78. But it is so much more than that. After falling to James Madison last season in the CAA Tournament semifinals, Ross guided Delaware to win the entire tournament in Baltimore this season, beating William & Mary, 75-74. He also helped the Blue Hens to a 25-10 (14-2 CAA) record. Once again, it is so much more than that. Ross accomplished all of this with his star player, Devon Saddler, being suspended for seven games at the start of the season for undisclosed reasons and again when Marvin King-Davis and Jarvis Threatt were suspended. Despite all this, Ross was able to bring the team an 11-0 conference record before losing to Towson Feb. 17. If Ross isn’t resigned to coach next year, it would be a major error in judgement because there is so much more he has yet to accomplish here at Delaware.

RolfvandeKerkhof
Photographer’s FILE PHOTO
Now in his third year at Delaware Rolf van de Kerkhof was able to help the Lady Hens claim the CAA Championship and make the NCAA Tournament.

Rolf van de Kerkhof (Field Hockey):

If Monté Ross symbolizes a season’s efforts, van de Kerkhof symbolizes an entire team’s efforts. Van de Kerkhof, who hails from the Netherlands, helped the Lady Hens get to the first round of the NCAA Tournament, where the team was beaten 6-2 by perennial foe North Carolina. It was the culmination of a building process that began in September 2012 when the Tar Heels beat the Lady Hens 6-0 at Rullo Stadium. Van de Kerkhof began to improve the team this season, bringing in Esmée Peet and Marjelle Scheffers from the Netherlands as well as redshirt freshman Maddie O’Beirne to strengthen the midfield, while making sure the old guard of seniors Heather Hartman, Clare O’Malley, Toni Popinko, Kasey Prettyman and Sarah Scher, as well as junior Michaela Patzner, were still improving and leading the team. Delaware went 6-0 in the CAA on its way to a 17-5 overall record. Van de Kerkhof will continue to be head coach here at Delaware, and as long as he is, the Lady Hens will have no problems flourishing.

Hennessy
Courtesy Mark Campbell/BlueHens.com
Ian Hennessy guided the Delaware men’s soccer team to its second NCAA Tournament berth in three years./span>

Ian Hennessy (Men’s Soccer):

Hennessy led the Blue Hens to their second NCAA Tournament berth in three years, and though the team fell in overtime to St. John’s University in the first round at Delaware Mini-Stadium, the effort had been shown before. Delaware had lost on penalty kicks to Drexel in the CAA semifinals but received an at-large bid into the 48-team bracket through having a 14-5-1 overall record this season. A coach who makes his job look effortless and graceful, Hennessy will continue to improve Delaware’s team, thanks to a five-year contract extension.

Honorable Mention: Wendy McFarlane (Women’s Cross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field)
Jack Cobourn is the new managing sports editor of The Review for the fall of 2014. Send any questions or comments to jclark@udel.edu

Best Team

MensBasketball_ActionShot
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Junior Guard Kyle Anderson (#13) puts the ball up during a game against Drexel. The Blue Hens went 14-2 in the CAA.

Men’s Basketball

Flash back to November. The Delaware men’s basketball team was 0-2. Its captain and star player, Devon Saddler, had just received a one-month suspension. The season outlook was bleak. Now, let’s move to the beginning of February. The Blue Hens had bounced back from the dismal start. Saddler had returned to lead the team to a 6-0 record in conference play. The Blue Hens were rolling and suddenly, there was a renewed optimism around the team. Then the news broke that starters Marvin King-Davis and Jarvis Threatt, who had been key to the team’s success, had each received one-month bans of their own. Still, Delaware would not be stopped. A team that endured its fair share of obstacles overcame the odds to finish on top. Not only did they win the CAA title, the team also qualified for the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1999. Though the 13-seed Blue Hens fell in the first round to fourth seeded Michigan State, the team’s inspired run earns them the top spot in our Best Team category.

fieldhockey
Courtesy of Mark Campbell/BlueHens.com
The Delaware field hockey team poses with its CAA Championships trophy. The Lady Hens went 6-0 in the conference.

Field Hockey

In 2013, the Delaware field hockey team produced one of the most dominant seasons in program history. Going 16-4 and 6-0 in conference play, the team used a well-balanced offensive and defensive unit to earn the top seed in the CAA tournament. When the team met third-seeded Northeastern in the finals, they had little trouble dismantling the Huskies. A 5-1 win earned them its first CAA title since 2009 and gave them an automatic berth in the NCAA tournament. The team hosted a play-in game against Liberty, in which the team posted a 1-0 shutout to advance. Though its incredible season came to an end when the Blue Hens fell to UNC in the first round, the team will look to build on that success next season.

WomensTrackField
Courtesy of Delaware Athletics/BlueHens.com
The women’s outdoor track and field team won its first-ever CAA Championship this season.

Women’s Track and Field

The members of the Delaware women’s track and field team came into this season with a chip on their shoulders. Having finished second at last year’s CAA championships, the Blue Hens entered the year determined to win it all this season. Led by senior Lindsay Prettyman, they did just that, winning the title by an incredible 20 points. The Blue Hens had six individual victories on the way to their first ever CAA title. Prettyman’s double in the 1500 and 800 meter events earned her the Meet’s Outstanding Track Performer award. While Prettyman and the other seniors will graduate this May, the team has a bright future.

Honorable Mention: Men’s Soccer and Women’s Basketball

Meghan O’Donnell is the new managing sports editor of The Review for the fall of 2014. Send any questions or comments to mod@udel.edu.

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