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Friday, October 24, 2014 | Last updated: 9:37am


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MSU Sports Blog

Volleyball freshman setter Rachel Minarick named Big Ten Freshman of the Week


By Troy Jefferson          Last updated: 10/20/14 8:31pm         

Freshman setter Rachel Minarick was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week for her efforts against Maryland and Rutgers over the weekend.

Minarick posted 33 assists in each game and a total of eight kills, 11 digs and hit at a .500 clip.

It's the first weekly conference honor for the freshman, who has replaced junior setter Halle Peterson in the lineup as she nurses an injury.

The Spartans are on a three game win streak and are back in action on the road Friday night against No. 20 Ohio State. 


Women's soccer forward Jamie Cheslik earns Big Ten Freshman of the week honors


By John Neidhart          Last updated: 10/07/14 8:19pm         

MSU freshman forward Jamie Cheslik was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Week yesterday, after leading the Spartans to their first conference victory.

Cheslik, who has been the team’s most dangerous offensive asset this year, tallied one assist and one goal in a win over Nebraska on Sunday. The weekly honor is the first of her collegiate career.

She leads the team with seven goals and 16 points, and she is currently sixth in the Big Ten in goals scored. She is also tied for first among freshmen in the conference for goals scored.

Cheslik will try to power the Spartans past Purdue at 7 p.m. on Thursday night in West Lafayette, Indiana.


Sparty will sport an updated ensemble for the Jacksonville State game


By Amanda Chodnicki          Last updated: 08/29/14 11:47am         

Sparty will strut his stuff in a new ensemble at MSU’s game against Jacksonville State at the Spartan Stadium Friday night.

The well-known mascot is getting a new suit of armor to show off to his fans.

“The changes aren’t major,” Director of the Association of Future Alumni Dan DiMaggio said.

He said that one addition to Sparty’s new wardrobe include epaulets, decorative shoulder pads, which will be changed from the Block "S" logo to a Spartan helmet design. 

“This is being done to remain consistent with the overall university brand,” DiMaggio said.

MSU Board of Trustees member George Perles had previously rallied against the phasing out of the Block "S". In a message posted on the MSU Football Pleyer's Association, Perles asked for support to preserve the once de-facto emblem.

"Coaches Macklin thru Biggie Munn and Duffy Daugherty were all proud and knew our symbol at MSU is the Block “S”," Perles wrote. "Changing it now would be a slap in the face to all that have gone before us and built the Spartan traditions."

In February, license plates available for cars throughout the state began sporting Spartan Helmets, and the Block "S" became no longer available.

Sparty’s suit will also be the real MSU green that was updated to a darker shade four years ago.

The changes were made possible because the Association of Future Alumni raised $15,000 from over 400 donors.


Volleyball will play 14 televised games during 2014 season


By Troy Jefferson          Last updated: 08/26/14 3:04pm         

The Big Ten Network announced the broadcast schedule for the 2014-15 season, which will feature 14 televised MSU women’s volleyball games.

BTN will carry four games, BTN Plus is scheduled to air nine games and the Pac-12 network will televise one game.

BTN will broadcast MSU’s first matchup against a top-25 team on Sept. 5 when the Spartans welcome No. 20 North Carolina to East Lansing.

MSU fans will be able to watch the team on the Pac-12 Network when they travel to Eugene to face the Oregon Ducks on September 12 at 10:30 p.m Eastern.

MSU defeated Oregon last year, 3-1 (25-21, 25-22, 21-25, 25-21).

Both of the games against Michigan will be televised. The road game on Sept. 30 will be available on BTN and the home game on Oct. 3 can be seen on BTN Plus. MSU went 1-1 against U-M last year.

BTN Plus will also carry what should be a good measuring stick game midseason when the Spartans visit Happy Valley to take on No. 1 Penn State.

The Spartans split two games with Penn State last year, with both teams winning on the road.

Nine games will also be available to BTN2Go subscribers, including matchups against Ohio State, Penn State, Northwestern, Iowa, U-M, Indiana, Maryland and Purdue. 


MSU senior Drew Lied named Men’s Tennis Athlete of the Week


By Ben Stram          Last updated: 04/22/14 5:34pm         

MSU senior Drew Lied was named Men’s Tennis Athlete of the Week today.

The senior from Brookfield, WI won four matches this week with three of the wins over ranked opponents.

On Friday against Purdue, Lied defeated Szymon Tatarczyk (6-3, 7-5) in the singles position and then earned a doubles win with partner John Patrick Mullane against No. 70 Tatarczyk and Ricky Medinilla (8-6).

On Sunday versus Indiana, he beat No. 104 Sam Monette (6-4, 7-6 (7-5)) in the singles position and then earned doubles victories again with partner John Patrick Mullane against No. 59 Monette and Daniel Bednarczyk (8-6).

This is his second weekly award of his career and of the season.

Lied helped the MSU Men's Tennis team win the last two matches of the season and three out of four overall.

Up next for MSU is the Big Ten Tournament. MSU is hosting the tournament, which is held on April 24-27, at either the MSU Outdoor Courts or the MSU Indoor Tennis Facility.


Men's Golf places ninth in invitational


By Mayara Sanches          Last updated: 04/14/14 5:28pm         

Coming from a 13th-place finish out of 15 teams at the Linger Longer Invitational on April 4-6, the men's golf team finished in 9th out of 11 teams in the Hawkeye-Great River Entertainment Invitational this past weekend.

The Spartans ended the first day in eighth, but finished the final round of the tournament with a 35-over par 899. Sophomore Mitch Rutledge tied for 16th at 5-over par 221 to lead the team, improving by two places from the first day.

"Overall, we did not execute very well, but hung in there," head coach Casey Lubahn told msuspartans.com. "We were tough down the stretch and that is a step in the right direction."

Iowa won the tournament, with an 11-under par 853 to win by 15 strokes over Iowa State. The Hawkeyes' Steven Ihm won the individual title, posting a 17-under par 209.

Senior Gareth Blease knocked in a hole-in-one at the 207-yard eighth hole. His second round was the highlight of the first day, Saturday. He finished the invitational tied for 26th, and had the lowest round of the final day for MSU. 

Overall, Rutledge led the Spartans in a tournament for the fourth time and posted his fourth top-20 finish this season. His 16th-place finish tied his fourth-best finish in his MSU career so far.

Freshman Charlie Netzel tied for 38th in the tournament with an 11-over par 227, followed by teammate redshirt freshman Sean Friel, who tied for 47th and had a 14-over par 230. Junior Jon Finley finished the tournament at 17-over par 233, tying for 53rd.

The men's team will play their last tournament — before postseason — in the Boilermaker Invitational on April 19-20 in West Lafayette, Ind. 

Also on April 19-20, the women's team will compete at the Lady Buckeye Invitational in Columbus, Ohio.


Senior Marina Bohrer receives Big Ten recognition for women's tennis


By Robert Bondy          Last updated: 04/09/14 8:30pm         

Senior Marina Bohrer was named Big Ten Women’s Tennis Athlete of the Week after earning a couple wins against ranked foes this past weekend. It was her first weekly award of her career.

Bohrer was able to win all four her matches this weekend, with two of which coming against top-45 foes.

In two singles matches, Bohrer defeated Illinois senior Allison Franklin (6-4, 6-2) and No. 44 Northwestern senior Veronica Corning (6-2, 3-6, 6-2). Bohrer also picked up a pair of doubles match wins against Illinois senior Misia Kedzierski and freshman Louise Kwong (8-4) and No. 21 Northwestern duo Corning and sophomore Alicia Barnett.

Bohrer is now 18-7 overall this season and 16-4 in dual matches.

Elena Ivanova was the last Spartan to win the weekly award back in March of 2009.


Eight-year-old Spartan basketball fan Lacey Holsworth dies


By          Last updated: 04/09/14 5:08am         

Eight-year-old Lacey Holsworth, known Princess Lacy among MSU basketball fans, apparently died late last night after a long battle with cancer. 

She became close friends with senior forward Adreian Payne, who has described her as being "like a sister" to him. Payne first met her in a hospital two years ago where she was undergoing treatment. 

Funeral plans have not been announced.


MSU pitcher wins conference Freshman of the Week honors


By Omari Sankofa II          Last updated: 03/31/14 8:01pm         

Following a strong win, MSU redshirt freshman pitcher Cam Vieaux has been named Big Ten Freshman of the Week.

On Sunday, Vieaux pitched the second of two consecutive shutouts in a doubleheader against Minnesota, leading the Spartans to a 5-0 win. With the victory, the Spartans improved to 12-11 overall and 3-3 in the Big Ten.

Vieaux, in his second career start, allowed three hits over six complete innings and struck out a season-high five batters.

The pitcher now is 3-2 for the season and is 1-1 as a starter. Vieaux has a 2.31 ERA and a strikeout-to-walk ratio 3-1.

Vieaux is the second MSU player to win the Big Ten Freshman of the Week honor this season, with RHP Walker Borkovich taking the honor home on March 3.

The Spartans won the opener 15-0, with sophomore righthander Justin Alleman allowing just five Gopher hits over eight innings. Alleman improved to 3-1 on the year.


Softball and baseball games postponed, moved because of weather


By Beau Hayhoe          Last updated: 03/26/14 5:35pm         

The rough transition between winter and spring in Michigan is wreaking havoc on more than just students walking across campus.

The MSU softball team has run into scheduling difficulties because of conditions at Secchia Stadium.

The team’s upcoming three-game series with Purdue set to be played at MSU this weekend has been moved to the Boilermakers’ home stadium in West Lafayette, Ind.

“Every northern school is dealing with the same problems we’re having,” softball head coach Jacquie Joseph told msuspartans.com. “We’ve received a record amount of snow, had record-low temperatures all winter, and just not a warm enough March to have us ready to go.”

Friday’s game is scheduled for 4 p.m., while Saturday and Sunday’s games are set to start at 1 p.m.

The Spartans already had cancelled their March 25 home game against Western Michigan.

To date, MSU is 7-18 overall and 0-3 in Big Ten play.

The MSU baseball team also is running into scheduling difficulties because of weather.

The program’s home opener against Central Michigan set for Wednesday was moved to April 8.

In the meantime, MSU is making a regularly scheduled visit to Minnesota for a three-game series this weekend.

The team is 10-10 overall and 1-2 in the Big Ten.