Gymnastics looks to rebound in Chicago

In the last leg of its spring trip, No.13 men’s gymnastics (10-5) will take on University of Chicago-Illinois in Chicago tomorrow at 1 p.m. Having lost their first two meets of the trip at California-Berkeley and Air Force, the Owls will look to salvage a win at Chicago to conclude this year’s spring trip.

Temple struggled greatly in last Thursday’s meet at Air Force, counting a total of 21 falls. Something that men’s coach Fred Turoff said he was not happy about.

“We had a poor meet again. In fact it was embarrassing,” Turoff said. “We counted 21 falls, so there went 21 full points. We had our lowest score with a full team of the season, 398.5.”

After the meet, the team came together for a team meeting to address the squad’s recent struggles, something that made graduate student Taylor Brana hopeful for the rest of the season.

“We came in as a team,” Brana said. “And said ‘look guys, what do we all need to do in order to change this, and for this to not happen again?’ and we all threw out ideas and suggestions. And we heard a lot
of great things, and I’m hopeful, I’m really hopeful.”

During the team’s recent losing skid, Brana has been a bright spot. The native of Israel has led Temple in scoring in three events in both of their losses this week, and will look to continue to perform well this Sunday.

On the his team’s last meet of their spring trip, Turoff said, “We head to Chicago for the last leg of our spring break trip, and hopefully will get back on the track to a better performance.”

Owls host Penn State in weekend doubleheader

Coming off of a 10-3 win over Lafayette in its home opener, Temple (4-9) will face Penn State (5-9) in a doubleheader at Skip Wilson Field beginning at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 16.

In just their second and third home game of the season, the Owls are hoping boost their record against a tough Penn State squad.

“Penn State will definitely be a good club,” coach Ryan Wheeler said. “They have a tremendous amount of athletes, good quality pitching, and they are going to be a solid team all around.”

In the first game of the doubleheader, sophomore pitcher Patrick Peterson will take the mound for the Owls. In three starts for Temple this season, Peterson is 0-2 with a 4.80 ERA with eight walks and leads the Owls in strikeouts with 15.

Following the 12:00 p.m. game, the Owls will play the second game of the doubleheader against the Nittany Lions. Wheeler has named sophomore pitcher Eric Peterson as his starter for game two. In four appearances this season, Eric Peterson has compiled a 2-0 record with a 2.53 ERA. Eric Peterson has recorded three walks and nine strikeouts in three relief appearances and one start in 2013.

In 14 games this season, the Nittany Lions have a team batting average of .275 accompanied by a team ERA of 5.32, while the Owls have a team batting average of .269 and a staff ERA of 5.43 in 13 games.

“We are expecting a team that will play hard the entire game,” redshirt-senior pitcher Dan Moller said.

During the Owls’ 2012 fall season, Temple traveled to Penn State and defeated the Nittany Lions in a scrimmage game, something Moller said he doesn’t believe Penn State has forgotten.

“I believe they will come in with a chip on their shoulders after we beat them in the fall,” Moller said. “No matter what, we are expecting a solid team and a solid performance from them on Saturday.”

On the road this season, Penn State will begin play Saturday with a record of 3-9 while they are the visiting team, while Temple is 1-0 when playing on its home turf in Ambler, PA.

“This weekend is going to be a good test to see if we can continue to play solid baseball,” Wheeler said. “We have been lacking consistency in certain aspects of our game and we hope to fix that starting Saturday.”

John Murrow can be reached at or Twitter @JohnMurrow12.

Owls head to San Diego State to complete road trip

Temple (5-1) will close out its three game California road trip against San Diego State (4-2,1-0 MPSF), on Saturday at 12 p.m. PT/ 3 p.m. ET.

In the first meeting in their schools’ history, the Owls and Aztecs will both look to continue their winning ways. Temple will attempt to start a new winning streak, following a win against the University of Southern California, while San Diego St. will try to surpass its longest streak of the season with a third straight victory.

The young Owls squad responded to their first defeat of the season with a comfortable 12-7 win against USC. Freshman attacker Rachel Schwaab had her best statistical performance of her career, against the Trojans, netting a hat trick and adding three assists.

Consistently strong play from the senior trio of midfielders Kellee Pace, Charlotte Swavola, and Stephany Parcell has anchored the Temple offense, during this road trip. In the two games against Stanford and USC, the three seniors have accounted for 12 of the team’s 22 total goals.

Tied at seven points each, the leaders in total points during the two game span has been Schwaab (3 goals, 4 assists) and Parcell (4 goals, 3 assists).

Senior goalkeeper Meghan Clothier followed her career-high 10 save game against Stanford with three saves against USC, but allowed seven Trojan goals compared to 14 allowed against the Cardinal.

For the Aztecs, the season has started with balance, ranking in the top ten of Division I scoring offense and scoring defense. The San Diego St. offense is tied for 8th in goals per game with 15.20, and it’s defense ranks 9th in goals allowed with 7.40 per game.

Sophomore attackers Michaela Jarvis and Bailey Ewing lead the Aztecs with a combined 49 total points, which accounts for just over 43% of the entire team’s output. Jarvis leads the team in assists with 14, and Ewing is the goal leader with 19.

Senior goalie Sammy Slattery has started every game for the Aztecs and ranks among the top goalie in goals allowed per game.

-Brien Edwards

Owls headed to Colorado to take on Air Force

The No. 12 men’s gymnastics team (10-4) will be heading to Colorado for Thursdays 6 p.m. meet with Air Force. After getting ousted by No. 9 California Berkeley last Sunday, the Owls will look to get back in the win column against Air Force.

Graduate student Taylor Brana will aim to stay in good form for tomorrow’s meet. The native of Israel led Temple in three events last Sunday at California. Scoring a 14.200 on pommel horse, a 14.300 on rings, and tying teammate senior Alex Tighe for the Owls’ highest score on parallel bars with a 14.600.

Senior Allan Malone is also in good form heading into the meet with Air Force. Malone scored very high at California Berkley as well. The Cookeville Tenn. native led Temple scoring a 13.750 on horizontal bar, and was Temple’s highest scorer on floor exercise with a 14.900, the major contribution to the team’s overall event score of 71.1, Temple’s best apparatus score of the day.

Brana said that he was a little disappointed with the team’s outcome last week, but that he and the rest of the Owls will look to get back on track at Air Force tomorrow. Competition begins at 6 p.m.

Doms named A-10 POW

Temple junior Alicia Doms has been named Atlantic 10 Women’s Tennis Performer of the Week. She won the award for the week spanning March 4-10.

Temple did not have any matches in that time frame, but the press release from the A-10 cites her performance in the March 3 match at Lehigh. Doms teamed with junior Jordan Batey and snared an 8-3 second flight doubles victory over freshman Ali Kaminetsky and junior Taylor Hampshire. Doms also triumphed in singles, defeating junior Jenai Bilimoria 6-4, 6-2 in the top flight.

Doms is 6-3 this spring in singles matches, including a 3-0 mark in the top flight. She is 5-3 in doubles matches, including a 5-1 record with Batey and an 0-2 record with junior Yana Mavrina.

Doms is currently on a three-match singles win streak, and will look to continue that at Xavier on Wednesday at 5 p.m.

Temple prepares for home opener

After opening its season with 12 straight away games, Temple (3-9) will host visiting Lafayette (2-9) in its home opener today at Skip Wilson Field at 3:00 p.m.

This specific game has been circled on the Owls’ schedule as the team has struggled on the road this season through 12 games, coach Ryan Wheeler said.

Temple has a 2-6 record while it is the away team and a 1-3 record when the team is on neutral turf this season.

“There is no doubt about it that opening the season on the road is tough,” Wheeler said. “Finally, we will have our comfortable surroundings, our fans and we will be on our home field.”

In 25 games last season at Temple’s Ambler campus, the Owls compiled a 10-15 record, while putting together a 9-19 record on the road in 2012.

“It’s a home opener and we are definitely excited for it,” sophomore shortstop Nick Lustrino said. “We are definitely expecting a battle and we will do what we can to earn a win at home.”

Wheeler has named junior pitcher Matt Hockenberry the starting pitcher for the game against Lafayette. This season, Hockenberry is 0-1 with a 9.32 ERA with 9.2 innings pitched. The 6 foot 2 inch right handed pitcher has allowed 14 hits, 12 runs (10 earned) and has recorded four walks and eight strikeouts in two starts for the Owls this season.

Opening the season with seven straight losses, the Leopards earned their first win on March 9 against Maryland Eastern Shore and followed with their second win of the 2013 season with a 15-1 victory also against Maryland Eastern Shore on March 10. On the road this season, Lafayette has compiled a 2-8 record.

The Owls will be coming off a 9-6 loss at Longwood and may be making some changes in the lineups, Wheeler said. Wheeler stated he was unhappy with his team’s performance following the March 12 loss in Farmville, Va.

“Everyday I wake up and tell myself it’s a new day and a new game,” Wheeler said. “I hope that we can get on the right track once we start playing at home a little more.”

For the Owls, this will just their second time at the Ambler Sports Complex in 2013. A team practice was held on Tuesday, March 5 and was the first time that Temple was able to practice on a field rather than in a gym.

Sunny skies and temperatures in the high 40’s are expected for the Wednesday’s game against Lafayette with a 30 percent chance of showers from 4-6 p.m.

“We take pride in where we play and we want to show [Lafayette] that this is our turf,” Lustrino said. “You never want to lose at home.”

John Murrow can be reached at or Twitter @JohnMurrow12.

Roberts resigns as ice hockey coach

Citing personal reasons, Jerry Roberts has resigned as Temple ice hockey head coach last week, Roberts confirmed Tuesday.

Roberts said via text message Tuesday night that he gave up the job he held for four seasons in order to “spend more time being a dad.” Roberts said he will stay on with the team in an administrative capacity moving forward.

Roberts has spent the better part of a decade with the team both as a player and coach since 2002. After taking over as head coach in 2009, Roberts guided the Owls to American Collegiate Hockey Association Regional Tournament berths in 2009-10 and 2010-11, along with Temple’s first appearance in the ACHA National Tournament in the Spring 2011.

Per the team’s website, the Owls are currently in the process of finding a head coach for the 2013-14 season.

Owls look to rebound against USC

Following its first loss of the season at the hands of #18 Stanford, Temple (4-1) will face the University of Southern California Trojans (4-4, 2-1 MPSF), in their second straight road game, Wednesday at 3 p.m. PT/6 p.m. ET.

With both of their previous games ending in losses to Stanford, the Owls and Trojans will meet for the first time in their program’s histories.

In a season where freshman have scored early and often, against Stanford, five different Owls scored goals, with freshman midfielder Avery Longstaff being the lone rookie goal scorer. In the 14-10 loss, junior attacker Jaymie Tabor led the Owls with a hat trick, while senior midfielders Kellee Pace, Stephany Parcell and Charlotte Swavola scored two goals each.

The three senior midfielders are also the Owls’ season leaders in total points.

In goal, senior goalie Meghan Clothier had a career day against Stanford. She recorded ten saves, which nearly doubled her season total before Sunday’s game.

In its last game, USC also traveled to Stanford, for a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation matchup, and left with a 17-12 defeat.

In Division I, USC is ranked 3rd in total points and 15th in scoring offense. The Trojans offense is led by freshman attacker Caroline de Lyra, who leads USC with 49 total points, recording 28 goals and 21 assists.

De Lyra’s point and scoring totals are also ranked second.

Freshman goalie Liz Schaeffer leads all goalies in saves, recording 72, and is tied for 10th in saves per game.

For the Owls, this will be the second game of their three game California road trip and the second game played in a three day span.

One game separates baseball from home opener

On Tuesday, March 12, Temple (3-8) will face off against Longwood (6-8) in Farmville, Va. in a single game beginning at 4:00 p.m.

Coming off of a two-loss weekend to UNC Asheville, the Owls will look to earn their fourth win of the season with redshirt-senior pitcher Dan Moller on the mound against the Lancers, coach Ryan Wheeler said.

In three starts this season, Moller has compiled a 0-2 record with a 10.29 ERA. The senior southpaw has allowed 20 hits and 16 runs while recording nine walks and five strikeouts in 14.0 innings pitched.

In a three-game series last year at Longwood, Temple lost the first two games of the series each by one run until defeating the Lancers 11-1 in the final meeting.

One Owl who is familiar with the Longwood pitching staff is sophomore shortstop Nick Lustrino, who went 8-for-13 last season against the Lancers. Lustrino added four runs and two RBI in the 2012 series.

“I am familiar with [Longwood] from my time coaching in Virginia,” Wheeler said, who spent 15 years of his 17-year coaching career in VA. “They are going to be tough; they are a well-coached team and they will have some strong players.”

Following Tuesday’s game, the Owls will be back in action on Wednesday, March 13 at 3:00 p.m. in their home opener at Skip Wilson Field against Lafayette.

John Murrow can be reached at or Twitter @JohnMurrow12.

Women’s basketball to face No. 3 Fordham in A-10 semis

Heading into tomorrow’s semifinal round match-up, No. 3 seed Fordham will look to avoid becoming Temple’s latest upset in the Atlantic 10 Conference tournament.

The Rams (23-7, 12-2 A-10) advanced following a blowout 65-48 win against No. 11 Saint Louis, just a couple hours after the Owls (13-17, 5-9 A-10) upset No. 2 Charlotte, 48-47.

“I’m trying to not get too excited [over the Saint Louis win] because we have to play a really good Temple team,” Fordham coach Stephanie Gaitley said. “We have a very difficult 40 minutes ahead of us against a well-coached and a really strong Temple team.”

Ironically, these teams met just last Sunday, March 3 in what was the regular season finale for both sides. Fordham came out on top at McGonigle Hall, 58-44.

Fordham presented a balanced scoring attack with four players finishing in double figures. Redshirt-junior guard Erin Rooney led the way with 15 points, followed by grad student forward Marah Strickland with 14, freshman forward Samantha Clark with 11, and junior guard Abigail Corning with 10.

“We played very well to beat Temple on their court,” Gaitley said. “But again, they beat a really good Charlotte team.”

Temple senior center Victoria Macaulay and freshman forward Sally Kabengano combined for 28 of the Owls’ 44 points in last week’s loss to the Rams.

Things have perked up for the Owls since then, however. Coach Tonya Cardoza’s squad has proved itself worthy of Gaitley’s praise, as Temple has knocked off No. 7 seed Xavier and a Charlotte (24-5, 13-1 A-10) team that breezed through the A-10 during the regular season.

Gaitley said Fordham tries to not put too much thought into who it’s opposing, a strategy that has worked just fine thus far into the season.

“We made a point all year to have a blank uniform in front of us,” Gaitley said. “Right now the focus is just getting some rest, breaking down film, getting comfortable with things, and getting ready for a tough 40 minutes.”