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College Round-up: SJU fencers tie for second at NCAAs

The St. John's University fencing team finished in a tie for second at the NCAA Championships, which concluded Sunday at Stanford University.

The Red Storm tied with Notre Dame for second with 171 points, four points behind Penn State, which won its sixth consecutive title. Host Stanford finished in fourth place.

In Sunday's final men's round, St. John's junior Alex Roytblat, the defending NCAA epee champion, lost to Penn State's Daniel Landgren, 15-12 in the championship and placed second overall. Sophomore Dorot Levit, who entered the final round in third place, lost the bronze medal match to Notre Dame's Jan Viviani and placed fourth overall.

Freshman Ivan Lee, who was in seventh place in the sabre entering the final day of competition, won 10 matches on Sunday, capped by beating Tim Morehouse of Brandeis to win the bronze medal. Sophomore teammate Tom Hergenhan finished 11th overall.

In the men's foil, freshman Joseph Fisher finished in a tie for sixth place with Penn's David Cohen, while sophomore Davis Merritt finished 15th overall.

The tie for second is St. John's best finish in the NCAA Championships under fifth-year head coach Yury Gelman, and the program's best since finishing second in 1994-95.

And then there was one

When the buzzer sounded at the Siegal Center Monday night in Richmond, Va., with a mile-wide grin on her face, she climbed the steps of the ladder and begin to snip threads of the net.

Sue Bird, a Christ the King grad, is the lone former Queens high school star left in either the men's or women's NCAA Tournament. And, thanks to a 86-71 win over LSU, Bird and her Connecticut teammates are heading to the NCAA Final Four.

"We did it," she said. "I can't even explain it. We finally did it."

Bird had 16 points and five steals in the East Regional Final and was named to the All-tournament team.

"Sue has just really turned things around for us," guard Shea Ralph said of Bird. "She's like our glue. If you're going to win big tournament games, you need a good point guard and now we have that with Sue Bird."

Bird had to watch the Huskies lose in the Sweet 16 of last year's tournament, out with a torn ACL. Back from the injury, Bird has been one of the best players on the court for the Huskies.

Bird, a Syosset native, led UConn right from the start against LSU with 14 first half points and five steals. UConn will face Penn State Friday in the national semifinal. Fellow

SJU women's soccer adds two recruits

St. John's women's soccer coach Ian Stone announced both Courtney Rett and Michelle LaTour have committed to attend St. John's University in the fall.

Rett, from Valley Stream High School, is a defender who has also played with the New Hyde Park Bengals and is an Eastern New York State Olympic Development Program player.

"We're looking forward to the impact that Courtney will make on our program," Stone said. "She is a wonderfully gifted athletic, aggressive marking back who should fit into the style of Big East play straight away."

LaTour, from St. John Villa Academy on Staten Island, is a midfield/forward who has previously played for the East Meadow Shamrocks and Long Island Select. She is the younger sister of current Red Storm player Phyllis LaTour.

Baseball

Queens College 6-0-5, Adelphi 4-5-17. The Knights dropped a three-game series with Adelphi two games to one last week. Queens (6-7, 4-2 NYCAC) took the first game, 6-4 as Pete Cavouto led the way, going 2-4 with a double and three RBIs. Steve Moore picked up the win, increasing his record to 3-1, striking out four in seven innings of work.

In the 5-0 loss, the Knights were held to just five singles and in the 17-5 loss, Queens led 5-3 with two out in the bottom of the 5th before the Panthers rallied. Mike Evers, Brad Beamer, Carlos Cruz and Robert Behrman had two hits apiece for Queens.

St. John's 9-10-4, West Virginia 1-11-9. The Red Storm lost its Big East opening series to the Mountaineers. In the front end of a double header at C.W. Post in Brookville, L.I., junior hurler Kevin McGerry allowed one run on just four hits, striking out eight as he improved his record to 3-0.

St. John's (12-8, 1-2 Big East) jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when senior outfield Pete Graham and junior first baseman Chris Fallon hit back-to-back jacks.

West Virginia jumped out to a 10-3 lead in the nightcap, before the Red Storm rallied to cut its deficit to 11-10 before the game was called in the eighth-inning due to darkness.

In the rubber match Sunday at New York Tech in Old Westbury, the Mountaineers broke a 2-2 tie with four runs in the sixth inning and went on to a 9-4 win.

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