A year in Marlin sports

Volleyball captures ODAC title

For the first time in the history of the program, the volleyball team captured their first ODAC championship by defeating Randolph-Macon on their home floor on Nov. 9, 2019. With their 3-1 victory, the Marlins received an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. Amber Matalus led the way with 18 kills in the championship game which was a career high for her. Setters Haley Sutton and Meghan Wood also pitched in with 24 assists each. The Marlins ended up losing in the first round of NCAAs to Juniata, and their historic season came to an end with a program-record 28 wins. In her senior season, Matalus earned All-American Honorable Mention honors for the second year in a row.

Men’s soccer upsets Washington and Lee

The men’s soccer team pulled a fast one on the nationally-fourth ranked Washington and Lee, defeating them 1-0 on the Generals home field. This win from Oct. 19, 2019 was the highlight of the season for the relatively young Marlins team, which should translate well into next year as they return their leading scorer Scott Signorelli. However, in the 1-0 victory, it was freshman defender Matthew Goldberg who came up big and scored the game-deciding goal. Goldberg started every game this season on the backline. At the season’s end, the Marlin’s ultimately fell to the Generals in the ODAC tournament and finished 7-11. Signorelli earned a spot on the All-ODAC Second Team.

Women’s soccer excites in ODAC tournament

The women’s soccer team fell a little short compared to the past two seasons, but they still competed at a high level in ODAC tournament play and boast some exciting finishes. Exciting may be an understating description of their 2019 season, as the team played in nine games that ended in overtime, six of which were double overtime, and one in penalty kicks. The Marlins began ODAC tournament play with a 2-1 victory over Shenandoah. Allie Angell won the game for the Marlins, scoring the tie-breaking goal in the final minute of regulation. In the semifinals, the team defeated Washington and Lee 1-0; the lone goal scored by senior Marli Hayward. Then in the championship game, the Marlins fell to Randolph-Macon in penalty kicks 5-3. 

Lane and Roberts lead way at ODACs

Sophomore Jaylyn Lane and freshman Geni Roberts led the way for the men’s and women’s indoor track teams as they competed in ODACs on Feb. 29 and March 1. Jaylyn Lane has made quite a name for herself the past year and the Indoor Track & Field Championships were no different; she placed first and set a new ODAC record in the triple jump with a jump of 11.69 m., won the 60-meter dash with 7.89 seconds and placed second in the long jump with 5.03 m. On the men’s side, Geni Roberts won the men’s triple jump with 14.43 m, and placed fourth in the long jump with 6.71 m. Senior Curtis Dudley placed third in the 60-meter dash and sophomore Landry Moffo earned second in the 60-meter hurdles.

Men’s basketball spends season nationally ranked

With the addition of senior Daniel Spencer, an All-ODAC First Team transfer from Emory and Henry, the men’s basketball program spent the season as a national powerhouse. Spencer placed on the First Team again this season, along with junior Tim Fisher. The Marlins finished the year 23-5 overall, with a record of 13-3 in the conference. After falling in the ODAC Championship to Randolph-Macon, who ended the season ranked first in the country, Virginia Wesleyan did not earn a bid to the NCAA Tournament. This came as a shock as the team racked up quite a few noteworthy wins this season. They travelled to Guilford, ranked sixteenth-nationally at the time, and beat them 64-57, then they defeated Christopher Newport by 10, as well as Lynchburg twice. The Marlins rose as high as thirteenth nationally, and ended the season ranked sixteenth in the championship game against Randolph-Macon.  

Megan Sherman