PC Athletics gets high marks

Thursday, April 17, 2014
GoLocalProv Sports Team

It hasn't been just a great day to be a Friar lately.   It's also been a great winter in Friartown.

In the latest Learfield Sports Directors' Cup standings, Providence College was ranked 44th nationally among all Division I schools.  That may or may not sound like a major achievement, unless you consider there are more than 350 institutions who participate in intercollegiate athletics at the D-I level.  And, Providence ranks first among non-FBS/FCS (Football Bowl Subdivision/Football Championship Subdivision) colleges and universities (non-football playing schools).  PC is the only non-football school ranked among the Top 50.  Additionally, there are just 10 Division I non-football schools ranked in the national Top 100.

The Friars also rank first among Big East Conference members. Georgetown is the second-highest ranked team in the Big East, currently sitting in 53rd place nationally.  The Learfield Sports Directors' Cup was developed as a joint effort between the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) and USA Today.  Points are awarded to collegiate institutions based on a schools' performance in up to 20 sports.  An institution can earn points in up to 10 men's sports and 10 women's sports.

The women's cross country team claimed Providence's second NCAA team title in November.  Senior Emily Sisson was the Friars' top finisher with a seventh-place finish with a time of 20:17.5.  Senior Laura Nagel was the second Friar to cross the line (20:38.8), finishing 27th overall.  Sophomore Sarah Mary Collins finished in 39th with a time of 20:44.9.  By virtue of their top-40 finishes, Sission, Nagel and Collins earned All-American honors.

 

For the men's cross country team, junior Shane Quinn was the Friars' top finisher with a 42nd-place finish, out of 254 competitors, posting a time of 30:47.8. Junior Benjamin Connor closely trailed, finishing 44th in a time of 30:51.4.  The team's 16th-place finish (396 points) was its best finish since finishing ninth in 2006.

 

The men's soccer program earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament after posting a regular season record of 11-4-2.  During NCAA play, the Friars defeated Penn on the road in penalty kicks (3-1) to advance to the second round.  The Friars then traveled to College Park, MD to face fifth-ranked Maryland, who topped the Friars, 3-1.  The Terps went on to finish as the national runner-up.

 

The women's indoor track team recently added 17.5 points to the Friars' total in the standings, as Nagel and Sisson posted solid individual finishes at the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championship in Albuquerque, NM.  Nagel finished 13th in the 3,000 meters and claimed Second-Team All-American honors, while Sisson placed eighth in the 5,000 meters and captured First-Team All-American recognition.

 

The men’s ice hockey team recorded 60 points for Providence in the Directors’ Cup standings by virtue of advancing to the NCAA East Regional Final in Bridgeport, CT.  The Friars defeated Quinnipiac, 4-0, in NCAA First-Round play before falling to eventual National Champion Union in the NCAA Regional Semifinal, 3-1.  Providence’s victory over Quinnipiac marked the program’s first NCAA Tournament win since 1991.

 

And the men’s basketball team, which captured the 2014 Big East Tournament title, collected 25 points for its appearance in the NCAA Tournament Second Round.  The Friars faced North Carolina and were edged, 79-77, in San Antonio, TX, but the game marked the Friars’ 16th appearance all-time in the NCAA Tournament and their first since 2004.

The final set of Division I winter standings will be released April 24th, with the completion of the women’s gymnastics championship.   Point totals for spring sports will be added to the standings beginning May 29th, and the final Directors’ Cup standings will be released on June 26-27.

 

BIG EAST

Providence 44th 311.00 points

Georgetown 53rd 273.20

Villanova 57th 256.70

St. John’s 60th 235.00

Marquette 89th 139.00

Creighton 94th 125.00

Butler 105th 110.00

DePaul 118th 89.00

Xavier 258th 5.00

Seton Hall unranked 0.0

 

 

DIVISION I (NON-FOOTBALL) TOP-100 

*Providence 44th 311.00

Denver 59th 240.00

*St. John’s 60th 235.00

Boston University 83rd 153.50

Wisconsin-Milwaukee 86th 148.00

*Marquette 89th 139.00

American 91st 131.50

Cal State Northridge 94th 125.00

*Creighton 94th 125.00

Portland 97th 122.00

* denotes member of Big East Conference