College Round-up: Amityville’s Tristan Smith commits to St. John’s

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When the St. John’s season ended sooner than many expected in the first round of the Big East Tournament, Red Storm head coach Mike Jarvis spoke about his wish list for the upcoming season. On top of that list was getting a backup for Omar Cook, who logged 38.2 minutes per game in his freshman year.

Jarvis’ wish was granted Friday when Amityville senior Tristan Smith announced his intentions to attend St. John’s in the fall at a press conference at the Suffolk County school.

Smith, a 6-foot-1 point guard, helped lead Amityville to a pair of state Class B public school championships and a state Federation crown last month, capping a 27-1 season. He averaged 24 points per game this year and is Amityville’s all-time leader in points (1,419), assists (607) and steals (348).

Smith, who chose St. John’s over Pittsburgh, Illinois and Texas A&M, follows in the footsteps of Long Islanders Fred Lyson, Tom Bayne, Derek Brown and Zendon Hamilton to play college ball at St. John’s.

While he certainly will be able to take some of the pressure off of Cook, who was forced to single-handedly carry the Red Storm through most of the season, one of Smith’s biggest assets may be in the recruitment of Amityville teammate Jason Fraser, a 6-foot-10 center. Fraser is considered to be one of the top juniors in the country and is one of Jarvis’ top priorities for next season.

Next on the wish list for Jarvis and company is shooting guard Marcus Hatten out of Tallahassee Community College — the same school that produced Bootsy Thornton. The 6-foot-2 Baltimore native who averaged 16 points, 5.8 rebounds, four steals and 3.1 assists per game last year is also interested in Houston, Iowa State and DePaul.

SJU Softball sweeps Providence after losing pair to BC

After dropping a doubleheader to Big East rival Boston College Saturday, the St. John’s softball team returned the favor by sweeping a pair from Providence Monday at Mitchel Field in Uniondale, L.I.

The Red Storm (19-22, 3-5 Big East) rallied from a 1-0 deficit in the opener with a run in the seventh inning as Tiffany Howerton’s RBI double to left field scored Lisa Tropea to send the game into extra innings.

With one out in the bottom of the 11th, Jessica Dima doubled to left-center and was brought home by Alesha Argeras’ single up the middle as St. John’s won its third extra-inning game, 2-1.

Senior Gina Calabrese picked up her ninth win of the year, allowing one unearned run on four hits while striking out four with two walks.

In the nightcap, Bellerose native Courtney Fitzgerald picked up where Calabrese left off, pitching a two-hit shutout as the Red Storm defeated Providence, 2-0. It was the Mary Louis grad’s third shutout of the year and her team-leading 10th win of the season. Dima and Ann Raab had RBI hits for St. John’s.

In a doubleheader at Mitchel Field Saturday, Boston College came from behind twice to sweep the Red Storm. In the opener, the Eagles scored five runs in the top of the seventh inning to defeat St. John’s, 6-5 and scored two runs in the top of the 10th to win the nightcap, 3-1.

SJU Golf finishes sixth at Pirate Spring Intercollegiate

Led by sophomore Andrew Svoboda, who was second overall, the St. John’s golf team finished sixth in the 24-team field at the East Carolina Spring Intercollegiate at the Bradford Creek Golf Club in Greenville, N.C. last weekend. Campbell University fired a six-over par 870 to win the crown. Eton College, East Carolina, Marquette and Bethune-Cookman followed. The Red Storm shot a 24-over par 888.

“Andrew had a great weekend and we did what we had to do in terms of beating teams from our district,” said St. John’s coach Frank Darby. “It’s looking more and more like we’ll get a bid to the NCAA Tournament and these guys are really playing like they belong.”

Coming off one of their best fall seasons in history where they claimed four tournament titles, St. John’s was in fifth place after the first day of the competition Saturday with an 18-over par 594.

Svoboda fired a three-under par 69 in the final round and finished second overall behind George Mason’s Craig Mason. It was Svoboda’s third consecutive top-five finish this spring.

Sophomore Jesse Fitzgerald finished in 14th place with a three-over par 219. It was Fitzgerald’s third top-20 performance during the spring.


Queens 11, Mercy 8. Carl Waldheim, NYCAC’s co-pitcher of the week, picked up his third win of the week in relief, yielding one run and three hits in just under five innings of work. Pete Cavouto was 2-for-3 with a home run and four runs scored and Rocco Rotondi added two hits and three RBIs.

Queens 11-5, Mercy 7-2. The Knights got a complete game eight-hitter from Steve Moore, as Carlos Cruz paced the QC offense with two hits and two RBIs in the opener. Keith Haack allowed only six hits in the nightcap while going the distance, as Mike Eddy was 3-for-4 with two RBIs.


UMass-Lowell 4-3, Queens 1-1. The Lady Knights were swept in a doubleheader Saturday, leaving 11 runners on base in the first game. Cheryl Cosenzo tripled and scored the team’s only run in the first game., while Lauren Wells went the distance in the loss, only giving up four hits and one earned run in the nightcap.

Queens 3-8, Bryant 4-1. Cosenzo was 2-for-3, scoring twice and Mary Okolski was 3-for-3 with three RBIs in the loss. Wells pitched a no-hitter in the nightcap, striking out 12. The Lady Knights are now 11-11 overall and 6-2 in conference play.

Men’s Tennis

St. John’s 4, Boston College 3. The Red Storm made major strides toward clinching a Big East Tournament berth with a come-from-behind 4-3 win at Boston College Sunday. After dropping all three doubles matches, St. John’s (7-6, 3-2 Big East) won in first singles as Erik Scharf improved to 12-0 with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Justin Slattery.

Jake Maxwell, Brian Scharf and Cameron Lore also won singles matches for the Red Storm, who wrap up their regular season at the National Tennis Center against Providence Thursday after heading to Villanova in a match scheduled for Tuesday.

Hunter 7, York 2. Astoria native Vincent Salomson led Hunter (2-2, 2-0 CUNY) with a 6-0, 6-0 third singles win and Ramon Smart won a fourth singles match, 7-6, 4-6, 6-3 for York (2-1, 1-1). Salomson, out of Archbishop Molloy High School, earned CUNY Rookie of the Week honors with four straight wins. He is 5-1 and 2-0 in conference play.

Reach Associate Sports Editor Dylan Butler by e-mail at or call 229-0300, Ext. 143.

Posted 7:04 pm, October 10, 2011
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