The biggest news that happened in athletics this week didn’t happen on a field or court, but, rather, in the form of two announcements.
The first was that a limited number of fans will be allowed to watch outdoor Pilots games this season. The second was that the men’s basketball team hired a new head coach Monday, after the dismissal of Terry Porter last month.
Shantay Legans was hired to be the new head coach of the men’s basketball team. Legans has spent the past 12 years at Eastern Washington University, as both an assistant and the head coach.
EWU this year went 16-8 and played in the NCAA tournament berth, losing to Kansas in the round of 64.
The women’s basketball team came in second in the Women's Basketball Invitational postseason tournament, narrowly losing to Cleveland State 64 to 67.
This ends the second season in the Michael Meek era at UP. Under his tenure, the Pilots are 35 and 24 with one WCC tournament championship and one NCAA tournament berth.
After a dominant three-game sweep of Pacific, outsourcing them 39 to 10, the Pilots are sitting at 10-8 overall on the season. The Pilots are now seven and three in their last 10 games.
Junior Chad Stevens is a midseason standout with an OPS (on-base percentage plus slugging percentage) of 1.009, 42 total bases and 15 runs batted in.
This week the Pilots head to Eugene to play Oregon in a one-game series before hosting Santa Clara in a three-game series.
Track and Field
The first track and field meet of the season took place on March 20. Laura Pellicoro finished first in the 1500m run with a time of 4:22.52 and earned eighth place in program history. Tara Fuiten also placed first in the 400m dash with a time of 58.13 and earned tenth place in program history. Lauren Block also scored an individual win in the 800m run with a time of 2:19.92. The next track and field meet is in Eugene on April 2 and April 3.
The men’s team had four of the top five finishers in the 800m and had three in the top five in the 1500m. George Duggan came in first in the 800m with a time of 1:54.10 and Bradley Peloquin’s 3:53.51 in the 1500m won him first place.
The women’s team played Pepperdine on March 19 ending with a 0-0 tie for the second time this season as they head into their next match against San Diego on March 27.
The men’s team beat Gonzaga two to one in Spokane with two first-half goals, one by Luke Hendel, a penalty kick, and the other by Miguel Yuste. This week the Pilots will head down to California to play San Diego on March 28.
The Pilots finished a two-day pairs tournament on March 14 with a one to five score. Shayla Hoeft and Alycia Wodke earned the sole win against Boise State. The Pilot’s next matches on April 3 and April 4 are scheduled in Salem against Corban.
The women’s team competed against BYU on March 19 and UW on March 21 losing seven to zero against both teams with the Pilots now sitting at one and six in the season. Their next match is against Gonzaga on March 27.
The men’s team beat Montana five to two in their final non-conference competition of the season. The Pilots are now six and two on the season with the first conference match on March 28 against San Diego.
The Pilots’ two scheduled matches against Pacific on March 19 and 20 were canceled so the Pilots still sit at 2-12. There are two upcoming matches against Gonzaga scheduled on March 27 and 28.
William Seekamp is the Sports Editor for The Beacon. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Joslin Torres is a reporter for The Beacon. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org