Sports

Mustang spirit squads shine at 2016 NCA Collegiate National Championship

SMU Cheerleaders, 2016 NCA Champions, 400px

SMU cheerleaders react after being named 2016 NCA Champions

The SMU cheer squad had plenty to cheer about after winning first place at the NCA Collegiate National Championship in Daytona Beach, Florida – the first time the team has captured the title. The 20-member team competed against 17 other teams in the Intermediate Small Coed Division in the two-day April event.

“Last year we placed second by .08, so this team was laser-focused on winning,” said SMU cheer and pom coach Tiffany Fettinger. “The students performed a perfect routine at finals. I am so proud of them.”

Qualifying for the competition began during cheerleading camp at SMU in summer 2015 when the team was offered the highest bid to the championship after its performance. In the time between qualifying for the competition and winning the championship, the SMU cheer squad supported SMU football, volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball teams as well as appearing at numerous other SMU events.

SMU Pom Squad, 3rd place, NCA 2016, 400px

The SMU Pom Squad at Daytona Beach

Members of the winning squad include Jessie Abernathy, Sarah Almeida, Tess Balentine, Charleigh Berry Meg Bres, Hanna Clarke, Austin Copeland, Reid Burkett, Ashton Chmielewski, Blaise Graham, Stefanie Henger, Isaac Huerta, Kendall Kramer, Camille Monette, Brandon Niven, Janie Pascoe, Lindsey Ray, Colette Rushing, Morgan Silva, Sydney Tomlinson and Nathan Williams.

SMU Pom also performed well at the competition, placing third in Pom Division I.

Pom team members include Natalie Brock, Caroline Carter, Rachel Cocke, Shannon Flaherty, Emma Hill, Lisa Ingham, Jenny Katlein, Alexis Kopp, Katherine McGowan, Karlie Morris, Erika Olsen, Brooke Peterson, Morgan Peterson, Blake Ann Seeker, Rachael Seidl, Grace Stokes, Blair Welch, Jordan Woodruff, Megan Young and Ashley Jo Zaccagnini

The National Cheerleaders Association has its roots at SMU, founded in 1948 by former SMU cheerleader and creator of the “Herkie” jump, Lawrence Herkimer ’48.

Nancy George

Sports: End of the year doesn’t stop the SMU Mustangs

equestrianteamSix Mustangs Earn Academic All-America Accolades, 13 Named to Honor Roll: Fourteen members of the SMU equestrian team earned National Collegiate Equestrian Association academic honors, the NCEA announced. Six riders earned spots on the Beval Saddlery Academic All-America team, while 13 were named to the La Hacienda Academic Honor Roll. Schaefer Raposa, Sylvia de Toledo and Keagan Snively achieved first-team status, which is awarded to student-athletes who competed in a minimum of 70 percent of meets during the 2015-16 season, and earned a cumulative 3.5 GPA. de Toledo achieved a team-high 3.97 GPA, Raposa boasted a 3.70 and Snively maintained a 3.54.

Three Mustangs Qualify for Rio Olympic GamesNina Rangelova ’15 (Bulgaria), Rachel Nicol ’16 (Canada) and Matea Samardzic (Croatia) are headed to Brazil for the 2016 Olympic Games. Qualification rounds are ongoing but these three have already reached Olympic Qualifying Time standards in at least one event. Rangelova, current volunteer assistant coach, will be making her third appearance at an Olympics game. Nicol will be participating in her first. Samardzic who is set to join SMU for the 2016-2017 year will also be competing for the first time. Swimming action runs from Aug. 6-13 so be sure to support our Mustangs!

averyAcker Receives Presidential Award of Excellence: Avery Acker, a senior volleyball player, received the Presidential Award of Excellence: Scholar/Athlete Award at the Hilltop Excellence Awards. Acker was also named 2015-16 American Athletic Conference Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year earlier this semester. Acker will attend medical school in the fall.

goldwomenMustangs Selected For NCAA Women’s Golf Bryan Regional: The SMU women’s golf team has been selected as one of 18 teams to compete at the NCAA Women’s Golf Regional held in Bryan, Texas, at Traditions Club May 5-7. SMU is the No.9 seed for the event. The Mustangs are seeking their first NCAA Championship appearance since 1992. The top six teams from each Regional will earn a championship berth, as well as the top three individuals from non-qualifying teams.

Travis Mays Named Head Women’s Basketball Coach at SMU

travismaysTravis Mays has been named the new Head Women’s Basketball Coach, Director of Athletics Rick Hart announced last week. Mays previously served as an assistant coach for 14 years at various schools, serving under three hall of fame coaches. He has also played 11 years of professional basketball both domestically and abroad.

> SMU Forum: Rhonda Rompola announces retirement after 35 years with SMU women’s basketball.

“After meeting with Travis, I immediately knew that he was ready to be a head coach,” said Hart. “He has a tremendous coaching pedigree, having learned from some of the best in the business. Everyone spoke so highly of Travis — even those outside his immediate coaching circle, like Geno Auriemma. Travis displays strong character and a will to succeed. In short, he is a winner.”

Not only is Travis a gifted floor coach but he is also a recruiter with Texas roots. He graduated from the University of Texas, playing as a guard from 1986-90,  later going on to serve a three-year stint for the women’s basketball program from 2004-07 and then returning in 2012 to serve as Assistant Head Coach. He comes to SMU from Texas where he spent the past four seasons. His duties at Texas included recruiting, preparing opponent scouting reports, instructing guards on the court and public speaking at various community service and campus events.

“I think as a former player at Texas, Travis has name recognition and the ability to recruit that will make him a tremendous hire at SMU,” said Van Chancellor, a Hall of Fame Coach. “Sometimes during a hire, the Athletic Director is trying to hit a home run, and I think SMU has hit a grand slam.”

> Find more information on Coach Mays’ extensive background on the SMU Athletics page

Sports: Hard work all around

tennisSMU Tops UMBC 6-1: The #44 SMU Mustang’s Tennis team picked up their 13th win of the season on Tuesday night here at the Turpin Stadium at the SMU Tennis Complex. After beating UMBC, they’ve now extended their win streak to a season-high eight matches. Head Coach Carl Neufeld was especially proud of their dedication throughout the game. On Thursday night, the Mustangs fell in a tight match to #39 Columbia in Turpin Stadium. They’ll be back at it on Saturday against Dartmouth.

footballpracitceMustangs Kicked Off Spring Practice: Preparations for the 2016 season of SMU Football began on March 15. Fifteen practice sessions will take place over the next four-plus weeks. The practices will culminate in the Spring Game schedule for April 16 at 1 p.m. The game is open to the public and admission is free for all fans. Make sure to be there in support of the second year of the #PonyUpTempo era!

SMU Basketball in the AP Top 25: In the final AP Top 25 poll of the season, SMU came in at No. 24. The Mustangs have been ranked for the 17th consecutive week this season. The team finished with a 25-5 record for the season and placed second in the American conference at 13-5 in league action. Hats off to the SMU Men’s Basketball team for an outstanding season!

By | 2016-03-21T10:53:13+00:00 March 18, 2016|Categories: Sports|Tags: , , , |

Sports: SMU seniors being honored for their years on the Hilltop

bball seniorsSMU Men’s Basketball Senior Night: On Thursday, March 3, the SMU Men’s Basketball team honored its seniors with a pregame ceremony. For their final home game of the season, the Mustangs defeated the University of Connecticut Huskies 80-54. Following the victory, Coach Larry Brown and seniors Nic Moore, Markus Kennedy and Jordan Tolbert gave heart warming speeches to finish off an outstanding season of SMU basketball. The evening ended in true SMU fashion with confetti pouring onto fans and the SMU Basketball team. Their season will officially come to a close this Sunday after their final game at Cincinnati.

avery

Avery Acker

Acker Named the American Female-Scholar of the Year: Avery Acker, a standout senior volleyball player, has been named the 2015-2016 American Athletic Conference Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year. She is attending medical school next year and will receive $4,000 towards her professional education. She finished with a 3.941 grade-point average as an accounting major, with minors in chemistry and biological sciences. Acker graduated in December summa cum laude. Acker was a three-time starter and a three-year captain, leading the Mustangs to a program-best 27 wins and the school’s first conference championship in 2015.

Lammons

Nate Lammons

Lammons Tabbed Conference Player of the Week: SMU senior, Nate Lammons, was named the American Athletic Conference Men’s Tennis Player of the week. He posted a perfect combined record of 6-0 as the Mustangs went 2-1 last week. Lammons is currently on a six-match win streak in singles play and eight-match win streak in doubles action with teammate Slobodkins.

By | 2016-03-14T08:54:41+00:00 March 4, 2016|Categories: Sports|

Sports: Rhonda Rompola announces retirement after 35 years with SMU women’s basketball

rompolaRompola Announces Retirement: On Monday, Feb. 22, 2016, Mustang women’s basketball head coach Rhonda Rompola announced that she will be retiring at the conclusion of the 2015-16 season. She has been a part of the Hilltop for the past 35 years, first as a student-athlete and then as a coach. Rompola has either played or coached in 35 of the 40 seasons in which SMU has sponsored women’s basketball as a varsity sport. As Rick Hart, SMU Director of Athletics, put it, “Rhonda is synonymous with SMU women’s basketball.” SMU will honor Rompola after the team’s final home game on Saturday, Feb. 27, when the Mustangs host Houston at 2 p.m.

Day four of the 2015 American Athletic Conference Swimming & Diving Championships at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center Natatorium in Houston, TX on Saturday February 20, 2016. (Ben Solomon/American Athletic Conference)

Day four of the 2015 American Athletic Conference Swimming & Diving Championships at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center Natatorium in Houston, TX on Saturday February 20, 2016.
(Ben Solomon/American Athletic Conference)

Mustangs Repeat As AAC Swimming and Diving Champions: The SMU women’s swimming and diving team defended their title as American Athletic Conference champions this past weekend at the University of Houston. They once again came out on top, winning 10 of 18 swimming events, including a sweep of all five relays. This Championship is the Mustangs’ second in the three-year history of the American, and 17th in the last 20 seasons. The Mustangs finished with 681 points, while runner-up Tulane finished with 637.5. Head coach Steve Collins and assistant coach Ashley Dell were also honored as the 2016 AAC Women’s Coaching Staff of the Year, an award the staff was also honored with in 2015.

SMU Men’s Basketball Takes the Win Against East Carolina (add in Memphis away game on Thursday): On a Sunday afternoon of Moody Magic, No. 21 SMU defeated East Carolina 74-63. Nic Moore held down 22 points, including four 3-pointers after half-time. SMU is still in contention to win the league’s regular season-title for the second-year in a row. This win also allowed SMU to stay in the AP Top 25 for the 14th consecutive week, currently standing at No. 24.

By | 2016-02-26T14:16:11+00:00 February 26, 2016|Categories: Sports|

Sports: SMU In It to Win It

February 17, 2016: at Moody Coliseum. Photo by Vladimir Cherry

SMU Women’s Basketball celebrated Senior Day 2016 with a win over Tulsa in Moody Coliseum.
Photo by Vladimir Cherry

SMU beats Tulsa 62-45 on Senior Day: SMU Women’s Basketball took the win over Tulsa on Wednesday night, 62-45. Stephanie Collins set an SMU single-game record with seven blocks, and had 10 rebounds and 10 points for her second double-double of the season. Collins’ seven blocks is the second most in the American Athletic Conference this season. Gabrielle Wilkins, who was honored in a pregame ceremony, finished with 12 rebounds, six points, six assists and three steals. SMU took control early, outscoring the Golden Hurricane 20-6 in the opening 10 minutes and maintained the lead throughout the game.

SMU Men’s Basketball takes on Gonzaga and UConn: On Saturday, Feb. 13, #16 SMU took on Gonzaga at Moody Coliseum finishing with a 69-60 win. This non-conference match-up of league leaders, broke the Zags six-game winning streak and hurt their chances of reentering the Top 25. On Thursday, Feb. 18, #21 SMU fell to UConn on the road, 68-62. SMU will replay UConn at home on Thursday, March 3 – stay tuned!

volleyballFour Mustangs to Attend USA Volleyball National Team Tryout: Four Mustangs will attend the USA Volleyball National Team tryouts Feb. 19-21, 2016. The group includes AVCA All-American Honorable Mention award winners Morgan Heise and Janelle Giordano, as well as Katie Hegarty and Lauren Mills. The tryout will include 231 student-athletes from 88 participating universities and colleges and can be viewed online here.

Sports: SMU Athletics on the Rise

footballcalendar2016 SMU Football Schedule Released: The 2016 SMU Football schedule has been released and includes home games with TCU, Houston and Memphis. Be looking out for the match-up of SMU vs. TCU on September 23, 2016.

SMU Men’s Soccer Team adds ten for 2016: Head Coach Kevin Hudson has announced that ten new players will be joining the SMU Men’s Soccer Team in 2016. These players will join the ranks of a team which ended the season with a 15-3-4 record, an American Athletic Conference regular season title and an NCAA Sweet Sixteen appearance. Hudson believes the elite group of new players will immediately make the team better.

Feb 7, 2016; Tampa, FL, USA; Southern Methodist Mustangs guard Nic Moore (11) shoots a three pointer against the South Florida Bulls during the second half at USF Sun Dome. SMU defeated South Florida 93-59. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Nic Moore named to Wooden Award Late Season Top 20: SMU senior Nic Moore, the reigning American Athletic Conference Player of the Year, was named to the John R. Wooden Award Late Season Top 20. This prestigious honor recognizes the top player in the country. Moore is also one of the ten finalists for the Bob Cousey Award and was named to the Naismith and Oscar Robertson Trophy Watch Lists.

SMU Head Football Coach Chad Morris builds team with Texas recruits: Chad Morris prepares for his second season on the job by assembling a recruiting class entirely from Texas. Morris prides himself on the accomplishment and wants to continue to build the team through Texas recruits. Texas has always been a large and competitive recruiting state but Morris has yet to back down from any challenges thrown his way.

spike2Aaron “Spike” Davis named to US Eagles Rugby Team: SMU football alumnus, Aaron “Spike” Davis has been called up to the USA Men’s Eagles Rugby Team in preparation for the Americans Rugby Championship Match. The match will be played on Saturday, February 13th against Canada at the Dell Diamond in Austin, Texas. Davis played for the SMU Football team for four years and participated in mini-camps with the Green Bay Packers and the Washington Redskins before transitioning to rugby.

 

By | 2016-02-12T10:50:51+00:00 February 12, 2016|Categories: Sports|Tags: , , , , , |

Sports: SMU Athletics celebrates a successful Fall 2015

Undefeated SMU: The SMU Mustangs are 16-0, marking the 2nd longest winning streak in school history. They rank third in Division I and first in the American Athletic Conference. With 14 games left in the season, the finish line comes March 6 at Cincinnati.

Avery Acker

SMU volleyball player Avery Acker named CoSida Academic All-American of the Year: Senior setter Avery Acker has left a legacy at SMU both on and off the volleyball court. She was named the Academic All-American of the Year by the College Sports Information Directors of America. Acker posted a 3.95 GPA in accounting with minors in chemistry and biology, and has been accepted into medical school. The Poth native led the Mustangs to a program-record 27 wins and the school’s first conference championship, going 17-3 in the American Athletic Conference and 27-6 overall to advance to the NCAA Championship. She was also named the Sports Imports/AVCA National Player of the Week in September 2015 by the American Volleyball Coaches Association, becoming the first SMU player and first member of the American Athletic Conference to earn the honor.

Jackie Galloway to compete in 2016 Rio Olympics: CompeScreen Shot 2016-01-15 at 1.32.55 PMting in taekwondo, SMU sophomore Jackie Galloway has qualified for the Rio 2016 Olympics. Galloway has established herself as one of the country’s top taekwondo athletes, especially this season. She is majoring in mechanical engineering and was on the Division I rowing team for SMU.

SMU Men’s Tennis debuts at No. 46 in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Rankings: The SMU men’s tennis team is one of the most improved teams out of the toScreen Shot 2016-01-15 at 2.21.52 PMp 100 from last year’s rankings – debuting at No. 46 in the ITA Rankings. The Mustangs are also represented twice in the singles poll and once in the doubles polls. Junior Hunter Johnson and senior Nate Lammons represent the Mustangs in the singles poll as the 32nd and 44th best player in the nation, respectively. The twosome of Lammons and junior Arkadijs Slobodkins crack the top 20 in the doubles poll at No. 16. The Mustangs will open their dual match play Saturday, Jan. 23 against UCLA.

 

New SMU safety policy restricts items allowed into Ford Stadium

Clear handbag

An example of the type of bag that will be allowed in SMU’s Ford Stadium under new safety rules starting in fall 2015.

As faculty, staff members and students prepare for the 2015 Mustang football season, SMU is sharing information about a new safety policy that will restrict items that may be carried into Ford Stadium.

The only bags permitted will be those made of clear plastic, vinyl or PVC which do not exceed 12-by-6-by-12 inches, one-gallon clear plastic freezer bags (Ziploc or similar), or small clutch bags (about the size of a hand) with or without a strap. The clutch does not have to be clear and may be carried separately or within an approved plastic bag.

SMU’s gameday policy is modeled after that pioneered by the National Football League and in place at AT&T Stadium in Arlington and all other NFL stadiums. Other universities, such as Penn State and Rutgers, have made similar changes to their policies to embrace what the U.S. Department of Homeland Security considers a “best practice.”

> Parking, relocation information for SMU 2015 home football games

The policy acknowledges the reality of contemporary public safety issues and allows for improved protection against items being smuggled into the stadium, as well as faster passage through security screening at stadium entrances.

Signs explaining the new Ford Stadium policy will be posted in and around SMU parking facilities to alert fans. Separate screening will be available at all gates for items that are medically necessary and do not fit the clear bag policy.

> DART Gameday Rider Alert: Changes in service for Mustang Express (768) and Museum Express (743) shuttles effective Friday, Sept. 4, 2015

Things that fans normally carry in pockets can still come into the stadium in pockets – such as keys and cell phones.

Clear bag chart, SMU Ford Stadium

The following items are prohibited from entering Ford Stadium:

  • Purses
  • Coolers
  • Briefcases
  • Backpacks
  • Computer and camera bags
  • Cinch bags
  • Diaper bags
  • Fanny packs
  • Luggage of any kind
  • Seat cushions with zippers, pockets or compartments
  • Outside food or drink (one sealed bottle of water permitted)
  • Laser pointers
  • Noisemakers
  • Footballs or throwing objects
  • Radios (except pocket size with headsets)
  • Animals (except those assisting disabled guests)
  • Firearms, weapons, or knives of any kind

Questions or comments should be directed by e-mail to SMU Athletics.

> Find a complete list of SMU Ford Stadium gameday policies

By | 2015-09-03T14:26:05+00:00 September 3, 2015|Categories: News, Sports|Tags: , , , , , |
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