SMC golfers open play in Fresno today

The Saint Mary’s golf team returns to action today for the first two rounds of the Nick Watney Invitational at Fort Washington Golf & Country Club in Fresno.

The 13-team field includes host Fresno State, BYU, California, Cal Poly, Columbia, Long Beach State, Loyola Marymount, Nevada, Pacific, Sacramento State, Saint Mary’s, San Diego and UC Santa Barbara.

The Gaels are represented by Jonathan De Los Reyes, Pavan Sagoo, Hunter Rappleye, Connor Blick and Perry Cohen.  Roman Aragon is participating in the tournament as an individual.  SMC is paired with golfers from Fresno State, Cal and Columbia.

The event spans two days and features 54 holes of stroke play. A shotgun start format will be used for rounds one and two, both held today. All players will be re-grouped before the final round tomorrow, based on scores, and tee off every 10 minutes from holes No. 1 and No. 10 beginning at 8 a.m.

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Following former SMC basketball players in the pros

With the college and professional basketball seasons getting ready to kick into gear, we thought we’d compile our annual list of where former Gaels are plying their trade throughout the world.  Most leagues are currently in preseason mode, but a few are just finishing their seasons.

It appears there are currently 21 former SMC players actively competing as professionals in eight different countries around the world.

Clearly, players change teams throughout the year.  But here is a (hopefully) current list of former SMC players in professional basketball.

Name Country Team
Frederic Adjiwanou France JSA Bordeaux Basket
Ben Allen Australia Canberra Gunners
Kerry Carter Spain Iberostar Tenerife CB Canarias
Matthew Dellavedova United States Cleveland Cavaliers
Matthew Hodgson Australia Adelaide 36ers
Stephen Holt Australia Melbourne United
Garrett Jackson Australia NW Tasmania
Rob Jones Greece Kavala BC
Daniel Kickert Australia Melbourne United
Beau Levesque Spain Araberri BC Vitoria-Gasteiz
Mickey McConnell France Chalons Reims Champagne Basket
Patrick Mills United States San Antonio Spurs
Ian O’Leary Spain Iberostar Tenerife CB Canarias
Reda Rhalimi Morocco ASS Sale
E.J. Rowland Israel Hapoel Jerusalem
Kyle Rowley Spain Club Ourense Baloncesto
Diamon Simpson Israel Ironi Nes-Ziona
Clint Steindl Australia Townsville Crocodiles
Brad Waldow Belgium Port of Antwerp Giants
Lucas Walker Australia Adelaide 36ers
Mitchell Young Australia Townsville Crocodiles
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Saint Mary’s Holds Retirement Celebration For Coach Wayman

The Saint Mary’s athletics department held a celebration for former men’s tennis head coach Michael Wayman’s retirement yesterday. Wayman completed his 20th and final year of coaching at SMC during the 2014-15 season.

A room full of Saint Mary’s staff, faculty, friends, family and former student-athletes gathered and shared their favorite stories with each other and the three-time West Coast Conference Coach of the Year. Over the years, Wayman’s student-athletes earned numerous All-WCC honors on the courts and WCC All-Academic honors in the classroom.

He also served as the facility supervisor of the Timothy Korth Tennis Courts on campus as SMC hosted several West Coast Conference Championships. Wayman also oversaw the improvments and updating of the facility.

Wayman graduated from USC in 1975 where he was a standout tennis player, including a two-time First-Team All-American. His professional experience took him through the ATP Grand Prix Circuit (1975-1983), competing in a variety of major tournaments, including Wimbledon, the United States Open, the United States Indoors, WCT, and World Team Tennis.

Born in Dulwich, England, Wayman and his wife Nancy reside in Martinez, CA.

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Holt named NBL’s Blitz co-Most Valuable Player

Former Saint Mary’s men’s basketball guard Stephen Holt was named joint MVP winner of the 2015 NBL Blitz. Holt (Melbourne United) and Markel Starks (Cairns Taipans) were both awarded the Ray Borner MVP Medal for leading their clubs to clean sweeps in the NBL’s annual pre-season tournament.

Holt made headlines in his first Blitz outing, leading a shootout against the Illawarra Hawks at Townsville RSL Stadium. Holt shot at 77 per cent accuracy on his way to 27 points to go with five assists.

The Portland, Ore. native made more 3-pointers than any other player throughout the Blitz and continued his form on Saturday night with a 89-85 win against the Adelaide 36ers where he got the job done at both ends of the floor with 13 points and eight rebounds.

On Sunday morning Holt set Melbourne’s tone for the upcoming 2015/16 NBL season, when he scored a game-high 22 points in a dominating 92-56 win against the Sydney Kings.

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Rawls returns to visit campus during brief offseason break


Former Saint Mary’s goalkeeper Andre Rawls recently concluded his first professional season with the Wilmington Hammerheads, the United Soccer League affiliate of New York City FC.  The San Ramon native started 22 of the team’s 28 matches during the season.  He finished second in the USL in saves and fourth in saves percentage and saves per game.

The 2014 West Coast Conference Goalkeeper of the Year is in town during a brief break before he heads to New York to train with NYCFC for the remainder of the Major League Soccer season.  Here is a brief Q&A from when we caught up with him after this morning’s SMC practice.

Q:  Describe your first season as a professional.
A: “The whole year has been like roller coaster. It has been a lot of fun. I’m just starting to get into the business of professional sports, seeing how the day-to-day operations work. My stay in Wilmington was awesome. It wasn’t the season we wanted, by any means. But, for me, I thought my rookie season was a good one. I set the bar for my personal goals high and I thought I hit it, for the most part.”

Q: Did you think you had a good first step toward furthering your professional career on a higher level?
A:  “Yes, I think I definitely did. It was a great first season. Just going from the college level to the professional level was a huge jump. I am thankful for the USL for making that transition a little easier for me. Definitely, there is a talent jump. I got my feet wet and that was good for me.”

Q: You played in front of former Santa Clara goalkeeper Larry Jackson. Both being WCC guys, did you form a bond or did the rivalry keep you guys apart?
A: “Believe it or not, Larry is a great (despite being a Bronco). He was a lot of fun to hang out with, be around and compete with. He is, obviously, a great keeper. His stats show that. I remember playing against him when I was at Saint Mary’s. We had plenty of stories to share.”

Q: What is next for you?
A: “Next week I am headed up to New York to finish the season training with NYCFC and fighting for a roster spot next year. Since I was drafted by NYCFC, the club has my contract rights for another year – through Dec., 2016. It is my plan to try to make the first team and continue to improve my position in the club.”

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HoopsHD talks with Gaels basketball coach Marty Clarke

Jon Teitel of HoopsHD, a website that is described as a “collaborative effort between several longtime friends and basketball junkies,” recently posted this interview with Saint Mary’s associate head coach Marty Clarke about the Gaels program.

Among the interesting comments in the piece, Clarke said this when asked about head coach Randy Bennett —  “We have as good a team camaraderie as anyone in the country, which is a strong Australian value as well. He gets the most out of his talent and blends the pieces together extremely well.”

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Holt crushes the competition in his NBL Blitz debut

Former Saint Mary’s guard Stephen Holt created quite a buzz in Australia’s National Basketball League last night when the Portland native poured-in 27 points in Melbourne United’s win over Illawarra.  He also handed out five assists in the game, which took place in the league’s preseason “NBL Blitz.”

The 2015 NBL Blitz is taking place in Townsville from the yesterday through Sunday, and features all eight NBL teams playing three games each in a battle for the tournament’s Loggins-Bruton Cup.  Every game is scheduled to be streamed live.

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