VSR: Rader Student-Athlete of the Week

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  • By Daniel Whitehead
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  • January 10, 2011 05:57 PM
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – West Virginia University redshirt senior Brandon Rader has been named as the WVU Student-Athlete of the Week after leading the Mountaineer wrestling team to an upset victory over No. 8 Illinois.

With the team down 12-15,the Parkersburg, W. Va., native defeated No. 7-ranked Eric Terrazas by a fall in just 49 seconds in the final bout of the match to lift WVU over the Fighting Illini, 18-15.

The victory allowed Rader to override a win that Terrazas had over him in early December when the duo wrestled each other at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational. He also snapped a four-match losing skid with the win.

This week in women's basketball:
The sixth-ranked West Virginia women’s basketball team will face a pair of BIG EAST opponents this week starting with Marquette on Tuesday, January 11 at 8 p.m. in Milwaukee, Wis. The Mountaineers will wrap up the week with a 4 p.m. game in the WVU Coliseum against Syracuse. Saturday’s game is a Dairy Mart Dollar Day.

Last week in women's basketball:
WVU continued its undefeated streak as it is now 16-0 overall and 3-0 in BIG EAST competition to remain one of only three undefeated teams in all of Division I women’s basketball. The Mountaineers defeated a pair of league teams with a 67-46 win at Seton Hall on Jan. 5 and a 72-44 win at home over Cincinnati, Saturday. Liz Repella led all scorers with a season-high 24 points, including four 3-pointers at Seton Hall, while fellow senior Madina Ali had back-to-back double-doubles last week. Against Cincinnati WVU had 17 team blocks, the third-most in a game in program history. Repella and Korinne Campbell had a career-high five blocks each in the outing, while Asya Bussie contributed five as well, one short of her career high.

Notes and Quotes
WVU has recorded 16-straight wins in back-to-back seasons as they had 16-straight in the 2009-10 season as well. The Mountaineers continued their home court win streak to 28 games last week and have seen some of the highest attendance numbers in the history of the program. Averaging 2,415 a game, two crowds in the 2010-11 season have ranked in the WVU Coliseum’s top-20 attendance in the history of women’s basketball.

Every opponent has been held to less than 50 percent shooting from the field as WVU’s defense allows an average of 46.2 points per game, the lowest defensive average in the nation. Guarding the perimeter, WVU has held opponents to only 27.5 percent shooting from 3-point range, the fourth-best average in the BIG EAST and 14th in all of Division I. Adding into the defensive mind set, the Mountaineers lead the league and are No. 6 in the country in blocked shots as they average 7.4 a game, and are 17th nationally for a steals per game average of 12.7.

This week in gymnastics:
The No. 13-ranked Mountaineers open their 2011 home season and play host to Michigan State on Friday, Jan. 14, at the WVU Coliseum at 7:30 p.m. … Friday is the inaugural “Beauty and the Beast” meet, and the WVU wrestling team also will open its home season and compete against the Spartans simultaneously … additionally, Friday is a “Dollar Day” with all tickets, hot dogs, popcorn and Coca-Colas available for the purchase of just one dollar.

Last week in gymnastics:
The Mountaineers (1-0) opened their 2011 campaign on Jan. 7 with a 194.5-191.575 victory over No. 13 Missouri at the Cancun Classic, in Cancun, Mexico … after falling behind 48.9-47.925, WVU persevered and pulled out team wins on vault (49.925-48.9), beam (49.05-47.075) and floor (48.6-47.225) to secure the victory … Mizzou earned its sole team win on bars (48.375-47.925) … senior Amy Bieski finished first overall with 39.025 points and also won beam (9.85) and floor (9.85) … freshman Hope Sloanhoffer had a solid WVU debut, tying Bieski for first on floor, winning vault (9.925) and placing second on beam (9.825) … senior Alysha Pretzello paced the squad on bars and finished third overall with a 9.675 mark.

Notes and Quotes
The Mountaineers’ team score was the program’s best in a season opener since scoring 194.8 in 2007 … with the win, WVU takes the 3-2 series lead over Mizzou … Bieski’s score was her 16th career 39.0-plus mark and pushed her career point total to 1,513.925 … she now ranks 15th on the all-time career points list … additionally, her beam total matched a career high she at the 2010 NCAA Southeast Regional Championships … with her winning vault score, Sloanhoffer became the first rookie to score at least a 9.9 on any event since junior Tina Maloney won the 2009 East Atlantic Gymnastics League vault title with a 9.9 … additionally, she is the first gymnast to vault to a 9.925 score since Chelsi Tabor earned the mark against UNC in 2008 … Sloanhoffer is ranked No. 1 in the nation on vault … Maloney finished behind Sloanhoffer on vault with a 9.875 score, her highest score since her freshman season … Friday’s meeting with the Spartans will be the 22nd all-time between the two squads, with the series tied 10-10-1 … the Spartans have won the last two meets, most recently defeating the Mountaineers, 193.925-191.225, in their 2010 season opener.

This week in rifle:
The No. 1-ranked WVU rifle team (7-1, 5-0 GARC) opens its spring season and plays host to No. 17 Akron on Saturday, Jan. 15, at 8 a.m., at the WVU Rifle Range.

Last week in rifle:
The Mountaineers did not compete last week.

Notes and Quotes
Mountaineers resume their 2010-11 campaign after an eight-week break … the squad earned a 4671.75 average through its first eight matches … senior Nicco Campriani paces the Mountaineers in both guns, shooting 595.8 air gun and 589.6 smallbore.

This week in Swimming and Diving:
The Mountaineers are idle.

Last week in Swimming and Diving:
The West Virginia men’s swimming and diving team used eight top finishes en route to a 158-142 victory at Pitt on Saturday afternoon … despite four first-place finishes of their own, the women fell to the Panthers, 194-104.

Notes and Quotes
Senior George Farquhar led the meet with four first-place finishes in the 200 medley relay, 200 IM, 100 breast and 200 breast … sophomore Mandie Nugent finished first in the 100 fly and 200 fly, while sophomore Rachael Burnett took first in the 1000 free.

“Having to travel to Pitt always gives them the upper hand, as we had last year, but it was an exciting day and both teams swam well after a difficult training trip. Defeating the Pitt men for the second consecutive year is big for our program, but we are going to have to continue to get better in the next month to defeat them at the BIG EAST Championships.” – Coach Vic Riggs

This week in Track and Field:
The West Virginia University track and field team returns to action on Saturday, Jan. 15 with a trip to Kent, Ohio for the Doug Raymond Invitation hosted by Kent State.

Last week in Track and Field:
The Mountaineers posted an excellent showing last weekend at the Penn State Relays in University Park, Pa. … WVU saw four first place finishes, including two from senior All-American Chelsea Carrier.

Notes and Quotes:
Carrier led the Mountaineers taking first in the long jump with a BIG EAST qualifying distance of 5.56 meters, while junior Meghan Mock followed in second also clearing 5.56 meters … later in the day Carrier finished first in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 8.33, while sophomore Chené Townsend finished in sixth 9.01 … in the preliminaries, Townsend captured first in her heat with a BIG EAST qualifying time of 8.84 … in the relay events, West Virginia’s mile relay team of Jordan Hamric, Aubrey Moskal, Hallie Portner and Sarah Martinelli placed first with a time of 21:11.07, while the distance medley relay team of Kaylyn Christopher, Jordann Mitchell, Stephanie Caruso and Moskal placed second (12:08.48) …in other field events, freshman Sydney Cummings captured first in the high jump (1.67 meters), while junior Terina Miller also posted a BIG EAST qualifying performance with a fourth-place finish in the 20-pound weight throw (15.26 meters) … freshman Katlyn Shelar then led WVU with a second-place showing (3.35 meters) in the pole vault, and sophomore Lindsey Kopenhaver finished fifth after clearing 3.20 meters.

This week in wrestling:
The Mountaineers take on Michigan State in the inaugural "Beauty and the Beast" event with the gymnastics teams. The matchup is set for Fri., Jan. 14, at 7:30 p.m.

Last week in wrestling:
Down 12-15 in the final bout of WVU's matchup with No. 8 Illinois, redshirt senior Brandon Rader pinned the No. 7 wrestler in the country at the 149-pound weight class, Illini's Eric Terrazas, in just 49 seconds to give the Mountaineers an upset victory, 18-15, last Friday night in Urbana-Champaign, Ill. At 184 pounds, redshirt junior Matt Ryan defeated No. 17-ranked Tony Dallago by decision, 9-4, to exact revenge over the defeat he had against Dallago in Las Vegas last December. WVU's No. 23-ranked Shane Young (125 pounds) defeated his opponent while freshman Michael Morales was able to get back on the winning track with a win over the Illini's senior John Deneen at 141 pounds. Redshirt senior Donnie Jones picked up a decision win over Illinois' Conrad Polz. At 133 pounds, WVU's No. 14 Nathan Pennesi was once again defeated by Illinois' No. 5 B.J. Futrell, who had beaten Pennesi in Las Vegas, as well.

Notes and Quotes
With the win, the Mountaineers improve to 4-3 in dual meets this season ... WVU coach Craig Turnbull noted that the win is one of the program's most significant in recent years ... redshirt junior Christian Mory made his first appearance with the time since wrestling at the Sprawl & Brawl on Nov. 21 in Binghamton, N.Y. against No. 24 Rutgers ... Young improves to 19-6 on the year, Pennesi still has an impressive record of 16-4, and Rader snapped a four-match losing streak ... Jones improves to 9-3 for the year while Matt Ryan now stands at 12-3 following his win.

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