College Sports

Eagles looking to bounce back after losses

The Winthrop men's and women's soccer teams are looking to bounce back from losses when they take the field tonight, and both games have a Lowcountry flavor.

The Eagles, who fell 1-0 at Liberty, take on College of Charleston in a non-conference road test while the women's team opens Big South Conference play at home against Charleston Southern.

The Lady Eagles lost a 1-0 decision to Georgia Southern when Colleen Deignan scored with 20 seconds left in the second overtime.

Women's coach Melissa Heinz said her squad was looking at tonight's match as the beginning of the second season. Season three will come at tournament time.

"We're not looking back," Heinz said. "We're focused on Charleston Southern and the conference season."

Heinz was at a loss to explain the disappointing start.

"I wish I could say we're not playing well, but I can't," she said. "I wish I could say we don't have the type players we need, but we do. I wish I had reasons. A variety of mistakes have hurt us, and hopefully they're behind us."

Heinz said Chelsea White, Jessica Hausfeld, Kathleen Pollard, Stephanie Lucas, Katie Perkinson, Kristen Lee and Dimi Poulos have had solid seasons.

Winthrop's loss to the Flames continued a trend that haunted men's coach Rich Posipanko.

"I just can't get it done up there," said Posipanko, who has not won in Lynchburg, Va., since 1994. "They wanted to win more Saturday than we did. They wanted revenge."

• REMEMBERING CRISTI: The family of the late Cristi Curtis was recognized during halftime of last week's Alumni Day volleyball match against Liberty.

Curtis was killed in July. She was a four-year starter for the Eagles, earning all-conference and all-academic honors, and was the Big South Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 1999.

Prior to the match, family, friends and teammates gathered outside the Winthrop Coliseum and planted a tree in her honor. The Eagle Club is working on raising money to start the Cristi Curtis Scholarship Fund.

"Cristi was the kind of kid every coach dreams about coaching," former volleyball coach Mark Cooke said. "To see as many kids come back to honor her made it a very special day."

Anyone interested in contributing can contact Eagle Club director Sharen DuBard at (803) 323-2129, ext. 6218.

• ONE OF THOSE DAYS: The women's golf team had a day in the opening round of the Great Smokies Invitational where if it could go bad, it did.

"Everyone played bad and we shot ourselves in the foot," coach Jodi Wendt said. "We shouldn't have shot a 315 on that course."

Wendt said the biggest problem was adjusting to the greens.

"The greens were very fast and we weren't use to that because they're not able to cut the greens short around here," she said.

Junior Sara Hester opened with an 80 but bounced back with a two-under-par 70 to finish in a tie for 18th. Jutta Degerman shot 78-71 and finished 15th in the 120-player field.

Winthrop finished sixth. Tennessee-Chattanooga won the tournament, snapping host West Carolina's five-year stranglehold on the two-day event.

• LEARNING CURVE: Jacob Carlsson, a freshman from Stockholm, Sweden, is going through a major learning curve, according to men's golf coach Kevin Pendley.

"It's a major acclimation," Pendley said. "Not only is he having to adapt to a new culture and college, he's going through a major adjustment to college golf.

"For one thing, he's not use to the different grasses we have here. But he did some good things near the end of our first tournament and he's played better in qualifying for this week's tournament."

Winthrop, which opened with what Pendley called a disappointing 11th-place finish two weeks ago in the Raines Development Group Intercollegiate, travels to Durham, N.C., this weekend for the Duke Golf Classic.

• ON THE MEND: Cross country coach Ben Paxton said he probably shouldn't have let junior Brandon Hudgins run in last week's meet in Lehigh, Pa.

"Brandon had a bad asthma attack last week and he was laboring even before the meet started," Paxton said. "I left it up to him and he wanted to run. In hindsight, I probably shouldn't have let him run."

Hudgins, who along with Trevor Beesley and Brad Orr are the leaders of the men's team, ran a 26.38 over the 8K course, compared to the 25:58 he ran as a freshman.

Winthrop has the week off and Paxton is confident Hudgins and Casey Lyons, who has been held out with a heel injury, will be ready for the Furman Invitational in two weeks.

TODAY

At College of Charleston, men's soccer, 6 p.m.

Vs. Charleston Southern, women's soccer, 7 p.m., streaming video

FRIDAY

At Presbyterian, volleyball, 7 p.m.

SATURDAY

At UNC Asheville, 2 p.m., streaming video

At Presbyterian, women's soccer, 7 p.m.

Winthrop men's golf team at Duke Classic, Durham, N.C.

SUNDAY

Winthrop men's golf team at Duke Classic, Durham, N.C.

MONDAY

Vs. S.C. State, women's soccer, 7 p.m.

Winthrop men's golf team at Duke Classic, Durham, N.C.

TUESDAY

Vs. Brevard, men's soccer, 7 p.m., streaming video

• NOTE: To access streaming video, go to bigsouthsports.com, click on THE EDGE and follow the instructions.

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