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Your Guide to GW sports

The Colonials have added a third member to their incoming freshman class in infielder Ashley Schnarrs, the athletic department announced Wednesday.

Like many other GW recruits, they didn’t have to go far to find her. Schnarrs was a standout at Herndon High School (Va.) where she hit .475 during her senior season. Schnarrs was an All-Conference First Team selection twice and helped lead the team to a regular season conference championship during her sophomore year.

“Ashley is very athletic and will provide depth at all of the infield positions,” head coach Stacey Schramm said in a release. “I have had the pleasure of working with her at our camps and clinics, and the main characteristic that shines above all others is that she is very coachable. There is no doubt that she’ll work her way into an impactful role on the team because she is willing to get out of her comfort zone and try new things.”

Schnarrs will have some time to develop behind a relatively stacked bunch of infield talent including juniors Mary Wiley, Megan Linn and Paige Kovalsky and seniors Carlee Gray and Morgan Matetic. Schnarrs joins infielder Riley Tejcek and righty pitcher Jayme Cone in the incoming class.

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Thursday, June 25, 2015 2:26 p.m.

Men’s tennis brings in new assistant coach

A successful tennis player often called “Rafa” will be joining the Colonials next season.

Okay, not the one you’re thinking of. But GW bolstered its coaching staff by bringing on former UNC-Wilmington No. 1 Rafael Aita as an assistant coach, the athletic department announced Thursday.

“I have been fortunate to have had two very strong assistant coaches in Rodrigo Briceno and Philippe Oudshoorn who were each able to help GW win two Atlantic 10 titles,” head coach Greg Munoz said in a release. “Rafa brings a passion for the game and strong playing skills that will push the guys on the court and has the experience of competing at the No. 1 spot for a perennial NCAA qualifier in UNCW.”

Aita graduated from UNCW in 2014 as the most decorated men’s tennis player in Seahawks history. He served as team captain in 2013 and 2014 and led the program to three Colonial Athletic Association titles from 2011-2014. He played in the No. 1 spot on the ladder in each of those title seasons.

He has both national and international experience, having played in two NCAA team tournaments, four NCAA singles tournaments and for Peru in the 2014 Davis Cup.

Aita and doubles parter Sam Williams peaked at No. 14 in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) national doubles rankings, and Aita reached the No. 17 spot as a singles player.

The Colonials won their second straight Atlantic 10 tournament in 2015 before ending their season at the hands of Wake Forest in the first round of the NCAA tournament. GW was ultimately ranked fifth in the Atlantic Region by the ITA.

“Working with Coach Munoz and GW men’s tennis is going to be a one-of-a-kind experience,” said Aita in a release. “I am truly blessed to have the opportunity to join a top-level Division I program at GW. The coaching staff has done a truly splendid job in the past years, and I am excited to learn from them and ultimately help the student-athletes have a great GW experience both on and off the courts.”

All-time program wins leader Francisco Dias graduated in May, but the Colonials return eight players to the squad for Aita to work with. He joins the program in August.

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Senior Chakecia Miller drives past a defender in a game against Bowie State during her senior season. Hatchet File Photo.

Senior Chakecia Miller drives past a defender in a game against Bowie State during her senior season. Hatchet File Photo.

Recent women’s basketball graduate Chakecia Miller has been named GW’s nominee for the 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year award, the league announced Friday.

Miller, who ran the point as a senior during much of the Colonials’ record-breaking 2014-15 season, is one of 480 student-athletes nominated this year, the most in the history of the NCAA Woman of the Year program. The program honors academic achievements, athletics excellence, community service and leadership of graduating female college athletes from Divisions I, II and III.

The San Antonio, Texas native finished her collegiate career with 275 steals, good for 4th most in program history. She also finished her time at GW ranked 10th with 385 assists and tied for 7th with 125 games played.

Miller averaged 6.9 points, 3.8 assists and 2.1 steals per game during the Colonials’ 29-win season, en route to the team’s first A-10 title since 2003 and first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2008.

The psychology major graduated with a 3.21 GPA and accumulated more than 50 hours of community service as a GW student. Miller was also a three-year member of GW’s Leadership Academy and a two-time Student-Athlete Advisory Council team representative.

Miller now advances to the Atlantic 10 Conference ballot for a chance to be selected to advance to the national ballot. The 2015 Woman of the Year will be announced at an awards dinner in Indianapolis on Oct. 18.

Sarah-Jo Lawrence, also a former guard for the women’s basketball team, was the last Colonial to advance to the national ballot in 2008.

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Baseball’s star closer Eddie Muhl was named to the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA)/Rawlings All-East Region Second Team, the ABCA announced on Wednesday afternoon.

He is one of 12 players across eight regions from the Atlantic 10 conference to earn regional honors.

Muhl finished up a standout sophomore season in May, after which he was named to the A-10 All-Conference First Team. Muhl posted a 2.13 ERA with 20 strikeouts in 24 appearances, moving seamlessly into the closing spot.

He finished the regular season with an NCAA-leading 17 saves which set both GW and A-10 single-season records. Muhl also set a GW record for career saves during the 2015 season with 18.

Between the end of the 2014 season and mid-March, Muhl pitched 18.2 consecutive innings without giving up a run.

With Muhl at the back of the bullpen, the Colonials had their first 30-win season in a decade in 2015. They won two games in the A-10 Championship, but were knocked out of the semifinals by Davidson.

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GW pitcher Shane Kemp was drafted in the 26th round of the MLB First-Year Player Draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates Wednesday.

Kemp is the first Colonial to be drafted since 2011, when the Washington Nationals took Bobby Lucas Jr. in the 27th round. He is the 35th player from the program to be drafted since 1971 and the first by the Pirates.

A 6-foot-3 righty with a fastball in the mid-90s, Kemp started seven games and appeared in 12 for the Colonials. He finished with a 3-2 record and 4-18 ERA over 32.1 innings of work.

GW head coach Gregg Ritchie was the Pirates’ Major League hitting coach for two years before coming to GW in 2012, and was a coach in the club’s system for many years before that.

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Then-junior Tori Valos hits a home run for the Colonials against Georgetown. Valos graduated from GW earlier this month. Hatchet File Photo

Then-junior Tori Valos hits a home run for the Colonials against Georgetown. Valos graduated from GW earlier this month. Hatchet File Photo

Former softball star Tori Valos, who graduated earlier this month, has signed with the Dallas Charge, a professional softball team in the National Pro Fastpitch league.

Valos, a shortstop who hit .358 in her final season as a Colonial this spring, joins Elana Meyers Taylor as the second GW alumna to compete at the professional level.

“I am really looking forward to the challenges I will be facing in this new chapter of my career,” Valos said in a release. “This game is never-ending when it comes to improving your skills. As an athlete, there is always room to grow and become better and I am exited to be surrounded by coaches, players and competitors who have great experiences I can learn from.”

After two tryouts in Texas shortly following her final collegiate game on May 3, Valos was selected by the Charge, which will embark on its inaugural season in 2015. The team will join the Akron Racers, Chicago Bandits, Pennsylvania Rebellion and three-time league champion USSSA Pride in the five-team NPF league.

The 5-foot-4-inch Bakersfield, Calif. native ended her career at GW with a laundry list of program records. A three-time Colonials’ MVP, Valos leads GW softball in 11 statistical categories including career hits, home runs, RBIs, total bases, and at-bats.

The Charge will host the Rebellion in a season-opening three-game series from June 3-5, before taking on the back-to-back league champion Pride from June 6-9 to finish the home stand, all part of a 48-game 2015 regular season schedule.

“Signing with the Charge feels just like when I signed with GW,” Valos said. “I am excited, but I want to make sure I leave a legacy for future players to help encourage them to work up to their potential and push their limits. For me, this journey is about leaving something behind to inspire others and serve as a reminder of what hard work looks like.”

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The Colonials first, second and third varsity eights finished off their 2015 Campaign on Lake Mercer Sunday at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association National Championships.

The first boat finished 22nd, the second 15th and the third 16th in their respective events at rowing’s national championship, and those rankings will count nationally as their final slots for the year. The second varsity eight’s finish is it’s best since coming in 12th in 2009.

The top boat’s performances in the preliminary heats and repechages on Friday and Saturday placed the crew in the fourth of four finals, each racing six crews. The Colonials finished in 5:50.65, topping Oklahoma City and UC Santa Clara but crossing the 2,000-meter mark behind a fairly tight pack of Syracuse, Drexel and Oregon State. The University of Washington claimed the top overall spot in the varsity eight grand final as well as the grand finals in the second and third varsity eight races.

The second varsity eight was barely edged by Navy for third place in the third level final. The Colonials finished in 5:54.049, less than a second behind the Midshipmen. Columbia took first in the third level final, while Syracuse, Hobart and Oregon State trailed the Colonials to the finish line.

The third varsity eight finished fourth in its third level final. With a time of 6:04.03, GW beat Drexel, Hobart and Holy Cross but finished after winner Syracuse, Oregon State and the University of Pennsylvania.

Recent graduates Scott Yanoff and Matthew Coughlin rowed their final races for GW at the event. They rowed as the bow pair in the second boat.

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Julius Tverijonas, a rising junior on the men’s tennis team, earned his first professional doubles title at the Turkey F20 Futures tournament last weekend.

The unseeded Siauliai, Lithuania native and Bolivian partner Federico Zeballos upset top-seeded Mark Fynn and Arthur Surreaux in the semifinals with a 6-2, 6-7(5) (10-7) victory to earn the chance to face off against the fourth-seeded French pair of Constantin Belot and Nicolas Rosenzweig in the championship. They won easily, 6-3, 6-3.

The pair cruised to winning its first match 6-0, 6-2 before defeating the draw’s third-seeded pair 5-7, 6-3 (11-9) in the tournament quarterfinals.

The tournament, held at Turkey’s Belconti Resort Hotel, is part of the International Tennis Federation Men’s Circuit, an entry-level professional tennis organization.

Tverijonas finished his 2014-15 campaign at GW with 9-7 overall singles record and a 13-10 overall doubles record, as his team claimed its second consecutive A-10 championship with a win over No. 2 VCU last month.

The 20-year-old pre-business administration major will look for his second doubles title this week, paired with Surreaux in the Turkey F21 Futures tournament. The duo will face top-seeded Ricardo Rodriguez and Ruan Roelofse in the semifinal on Friday.

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The Atlantic 10 announced its women’s basketball league pairings for the upcoming 2015-15 season on Thursday.

A 16-game conference schedule for each of the A-10’s 14 members will allow every team to play each other at least once and three teams twice.

Reigning A-10 champion GW will take on Dayton, George Mason and Richmond both home and away next season. The Colonials played the same three teams twice in 2014-15, going 6-0 en route to a final regular season A-10 record of 15-1.

GW will also host La Salle, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Saint Louis and VCU at the Smith Center, and pay visits to Davidson, Duquesne, Fordham, St. Bonaventure and Saint Joseph’s next season.

The Colonials are coming off one of their best seasons in program history. After defeating Dayton in the A-10 championship final, the historic, 29-win campaign was cut short by a first round loss to No. 11 Gonzaga in the 2015 NCAA Tournament.

The league as a whole also sent five teams to the postseason in 2015, while three A-10 players were selected in the 2015 WNBA draft.

The 2016 A-10 women’s basketball championship will be played March 2-6, 2016 at the Richmond Coliseum.

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Could Georgetown-GW happen at long last?

Well, maybe. The D.C. Council will host a roundtable Thursday to discuss whether the group should support the creation of a “Big 6″ college basketball tournament in the District featuring GW, Georgetown, American, Maryland, George Mason and Howard.

The roundtable will be held at 2:45 p.m. and discuss the legislation proposed by Ward 2 Council member Jack Evans, who represents Foggy Bottom.

His proposal cited the existence of a similar style event in Philadelphia and the possibility of restructuring the BB&T Classic to pit local schools against each other, which would likely increase attendance and excitement around the event. Both GW and Georgetown competed in the BB&T Classic last season, but did not play each other.

The Colonials already play Atlantic 10 foe George Mason regularly, but have not suited up against the Hoyas since 1982. Athletic director Patrick Nero and men’s basketball head coach Mike Lonergan have expressed interest in scheduling a game against Georgetown.

Evans’ bill, if adopted, would ask Mayor Muriel Bowser’s office to form a “D.C. Big 6 Working Group” within 30 days to explore the creation of the event.

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