EAGLES WIN SOCON AIR RIFLE CHAMPIONSHIP
The Eagles pulled ahead late to capture the 2019 Southern Conference (SoCon) Air Rifle Championship for the second time in three years. Overall, the team finished fourth in the two-day event that was won by No. 20 UAB. Courtney Weekley posted a 581 in the first air rifle relay. In the second relay, Caroline Brakeville put up a 571 and junior Lydia Odlin posted a 575.
That set the stage for senior Rosemary Kramer who posted a 598 for a school and SoCon record. The four shooters total gave the Eagles a 2,325 team score, topping UAB by four points for the trophy. Post-event, Kramer was named SoCon Air Rifle Athlete of the Year for the second season in a row. With her win, she became the first SoCon individual champion in the school’s rifle history. Weekley and Kramer were both named first-team all-conference in both smallbore and air rifle, and head coach Sandra Worman was named co-coach of the year in the league.
Senior markswoman Rosemary Kramer was the first Georgia Southern student-athlete to appear at the NCAA Rifle Championships, which were held in Morgantown, West Virginia, in March. She represented the Eagles in air rifle and hit the mark with her performance. She set an NCAA Championship record in the preliminaries with a 599 (out of 600) and then placed third in the finals to earn a spot on the podium. This was quite an accomplishment for Kramer and the rifle program that was started just six years ago.
With an average of over 594 on the season, Kramer earned first-team All-America honors, also a first for the program. In addition to the NCAA championship, the markswoman has the opportunity this year to qualify for a spot on the U.S. Olympic Air Rifle team to compete in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Kramer’s performance has earned her a spot on Team USA for the World University Games in Naples, Italy, in July.
POSTSEASON ALL- CONFERENCE HONORS
Senior forward Javier Carbonell was named the 2018 Sun Belt Conference Men’s Soccer Player of the Year, as well as the Offensive Player of the Year. The Madrid, Spain, native is only the fourth Georgia Southern men’s soccer player to earn a league Player of the Year award, which he shared with Appalachian State goalkeeper Jake Chasteen. Carbonell scored 13 goals with three assists for 29 points in 2018, which tied for the conference lead in both goals and points.
TEAM REACHES SUN BELT CHAMPIONSHIP FINALS
Georgia Southern women’s tennis squad made it to the finals of the 2019 Sun Belt Conference championships but lost to South Alabama 4-1. This was the team’s first conference tournament final since 1986, and only its second conference tournament final in program history. The eighth-seeded Eagles (14-13) upset top-seeded Appalachian State and fourth-seeded UT Arlington to earn a berth in the final held in Peachtree City, Georgia.
HEAD COACH ANNOUNCED
Anita Howard (‘03) has been named head coach of the women’s basketball team. She served as head coach at Columbus State University for the last three seasons where she led the Cougars to two NCAA Division II Championships appearances and an NCAA Elite Eight appearance in 2016-17. Howard is the eighth head coach in Georgia Southern women’s basketball history and the team’s first African American female head coach. Howard was a standout high school player at A.E. Beach High School in Savannah under the legendary Ronald Booker. She graduated from Armstrong in 2003.
TEAM FINISHES THIRD AT SUN BELT CHAMPIONSHIP
The Eagles finished in third place at the Sun Belt Championship at the LPGA International Hills Course in Daytona Beach, Florida. Junior Ella Ofstedahl shot a 3-under-par 69 to win medalist honors. She is the first Sun Belt Conference champion in the history of the University’s women’s golf program, which completed its fourth season.
NEW VOLLEYBALL COACH
Chad Willis has been named the new volleyball coach at Georgia Southern. He spent the last six seasons as the associate head coach at Appalachian State. “We are thrilled to be a part of Eagle Nation and will work tirelessly to represent the passion and pride of Georgia Southern University and the Statesboro community,” Willis said when Director of Athletics Tom Kleinlein announced his hiring. Willis is a 2005 graduate of James Madison University. Georgia Southern is set to return 15 letterwinners and five starters to the 2019 team. Willis named Taylor Sherwin and Efrain Negron as assistant coaches. Sherwin spent the last three seasons as an assistant at Appalachian State where she trained the setters and assisted in coordinating the offense.
Negron served as the defensive coordinator at Clemson for the last two seasons.
Swimming & Diving
SWIMMING & DIVING EARNS CSCAA SCHOLAR ALL-AMERICA TEAM HONORS
The women’s swimming and diving team earned College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) Scholar All-America Team honors for the fall 2018 semester. Georgia Southern tied for 23rd among the NCCAA Division I institutions that qualified for the honor. The Eagles’ 3.57 GPA was a program best for the fall semester. Georgia Southern has now earned CSCAA Scholar All-America Team honors for five straight semesters, and 12 out of the last 13 semesters dating to 2012.
STEVEN FISK FINISHES SECOND AT NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
Georgia Southern golfer Steven Fisk capped off his record-breaking career as runner-up in the NCAA Men’s Golf Championships at The Blessings Golf Club in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Fisk finished 5-under for the tournament and was second to Oklahoma State sophomore Matthew Wolff, who shot 10-under for the tournament. Arizona State’s Chun An Yu was third at 3-under. It’s the best finish for an Eagle in program history.
“It’s been such a great week to be able to prove to myself that I could do it,” said Fisk. “It’s been a wonderful four years, and I couldn’t have had a better time anywhere else.”
The win marked the 13th top-five finish and the 25th top-10 finish for Fisk in his career with Georgia Southern, including nine wins, which surpassed a 38-year school record formerly held by Eagle great Jodie Mudd. In addition, Fisk was named Sun Belt Golfer of the Year, PING First-Team All-American, and was one of 10 finalists for the Fred Haskins Award for the “Most Outstanding Collegiate Golfer of the Year” and was a semifinalist for the Jack Nicklaus Player of the Year Award. Georgia Southern Golf Coach Carter Collins was also named Sun Belt Coach of the Year.
Georgia Southern’s appearance at the NCAA Championships was the first time the men’s golf team has qualified since 2010. The Eagles took fourth place at the NCAA Stanford Golf Regional with a -6 three-day total to advance with four other teams. Senior Steven Fisk and junior Jake Maples led the way on the final day, both carding 2 under 68s.
During the regional, no Eagle golfer shot over 72, the only team in the regional to make that claim. The 834 team total is the lowest for the program in its 15 regional appearances. Overall, this was Georgia Southern’s 15th appearance in the NCAA finals. The NCAA went to a regional format in 1989 and this is the fifth time in program history the Eagles have advanced out of regionals.