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SPORTS
May 1, 2015 | By the Inquirer Staff
The St. Joseph's men will play in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Tip-Off Tournament in November. The Hawks will host Niagara on Nov. 15 and Buffalo on Nov. 18 in the first two games. On Nov. 21, St. Joe's will play Florida in Uncasville, Conn., with Purdue taking on Old Dominion in the other Naismith Bracket game. The championship and consolation games will be played the next day. 'Nova in Hawaii. Villanova will be at Pearl Harbor for the 74th anniversary of the Japanese bombing that pulled the United States into World War II. The Wildcats will play Oklahoma on Dec. 7 in a duel of NCAA tournament teams.
SPORTS
April 27, 2015 | BY MIKE KERN, Daily News Staff Writer kernm@phillynews.com
AS JORDY WILLIAMSZ so accurately put it, Edward Cheserek is "the man at the moment" when it comes to distance running. The Oregon sophomore, a Kenyan who went to high school in Newark, N.J., already has won six NCAA national titles. Yesterday at Franklin Field, he's what Williamsz and Villanova were up against in the closing 1,600-meter leg of the Distance Medley Relay, which the Ducks won last April with Cheserek as their anchor. Hardly the easiest assignment. Especially when you get the baton in fourth place, about 20 meters behind pacesetting Columbia and about half that far in back of the team to beat.
SPORTS
April 27, 2015 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
In the 121-year history of the Penn Relays Carnival, there couldn't have been a stranger race than the one a Franklin Field crowd of 48,920 witnessed Saturday on the anchor leg of the men's 4-by-mile Championship of America. Villanova won the event as Jordy Williamsz outsprinted Oregon's Edward Cheserek to the line, turning the tables on Cheserek's sizzling finish the previous day on the Ducks' winning distance-medley relay. But the pace of the final leg won't be found on a tape of track's greatest hits any time soon.
SPORTS
April 27, 2015 | By Frank Fitzpatrick, Inquirer Columnist
The words from the sentimental poem Fran O'Hanlon read at Jack Kraft's memorial service Thursday afternoon must have held a special resonance for some in attendance. " 'I didn't yet know the meaning of heartache or recognize pain,' " O'Hanlon said, quoting the poem "Two Paths" by Grace Easley. "And I took it for granted that youth would remain.' " That illusion, virtually universal among humans, is particularly heartbreaking when it involves former athletes. Kraft died in August at 93. The basketball players he coached through 15 extremely successful seasons at Villanova are now in their 60s and 70s. Many reunited in the university's chapel for the ceremony, one that current Wildcats coach Jay Wright had arranged to precede that night's basketball banquet.
SPORTS
April 26, 2015 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
The words of Jordy Williamsz of Villanova were simple but eloquent as he described the performance of Oregon's Edward Cheserek during their final-lap duel in the men's distance-medley relay Friday at the 121st Penn Relays. "He's good, man. He's real good," Williamsz said. Cheserek, a sophomore who grew up in Kenya, bided his time in the 1,600-meter anchor leg and passed Williamsz with about 150 meters to go, lifting the Ducks to their second straight victory in the DMR and blunting a determined effort from Villanova.
SPORTS
April 25, 2015
Eric Paschall, the Atlantic Ten Conference rookie of the year this season, is transferring from Fordham to Villanova, The Inquirer learned Thursday. Paschall, a 6-foot-6 forward, averaged 15.9 points and 5.5 rebounds for the Rams in his freshman season. He was 10th in the A-10 in scoring and sixth in free-throw percentage at 79.4 percent. Paschall will sit out the 2015-16 season under NCAA rules and have three years of eligibility remaining. The official announcement of his transfer may come as soon as Friday.
SPORTS
April 25, 2015 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
When Emily Lipari departed Villanova after last season having won six Penn Relays watches, she was believed to have left a hole on the anchor leg too big for the Wildcats to fill while competing against some of the best runners in the country. But as senior Stephanie Schappert expressed with her terrific anchor leg Thursday in the women's distance-medley relay: no Lipari, no problem. Schappert outkicked Stanford's Elise Cranny in the final 150 meters of the 1,600-meter anchor leg to lift the Wildcats to their fourth consecutive victory in the DMR on a cold and blustery day at Franklin Field.
SPORTS
April 25, 2015 | By Phil Anastasia, Inquirer Columnist
It was Villanova senior Stephanie Schappert's first time on the anchor leg, her first time running the 1,600 meters at the end of the distance-medley relay at the Penn Relays. She ran 1,610. "I didn't even know where the finish line was," Schappert said. "I wasn't going to stop. I just kept going. " Schappert's ignorance was bliss in another way, too. She also was happily unaware that teammates Michaela Wilkins and Siofra Cleirigh Buttner bobbled their handoff between the 400-meter and 800-meter legs, nearly re-creating the disaster that disqualified the Wildcats in the distance-medley relay at the NCAA indoor championships in March in Fayetteville, Ark. "I didn't realize that happened," Schappert said.
SPORTS
April 24, 2015 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Even Gina Procaccio concedes "it's hard to top last year," when Villanova won all three women's distance relays at the Penn Relays behind its wondrous anchor, Emily Lipari. Lipari has moved on to the professional ranks, but that doesn't mean the Wildcats coach isn't going to send out her best runners at Franklin Field on Thursday for the distance medley relay championship, which her team has won three straight years. "I think we can be just as competitive this year, maybe not in all three," Procaccio said.
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