2011-12 ATHLETICS IN REVIEW
Cal State L.A.’s intercollegiate athletic teams enjoyed a 2011-12 campaign that included conference and regional championships, thrilling tournament runs and individual accolades. The Golden Eagles also excelled in community service, leading the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) with canned food donations for a second year.
Men’s soccer takes regional crown
For men’s soccer, 2011 was the “Year of the Championships.” The Golden Eagles had one of the most successful seasons in the history of the program after capturing their first National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II West Region title since 1981 and first CCAA championship since 1992. Cal State L.A. compiled a 15-2-6 overall record and finished the season ranked No. 8 in the nation in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America’s final rankings. The Golden Eagles advanced to the national quarterfinals, where their run ended in a 2-0 loss at eventual national champion Fort Lewis in Colorado.
Women’s soccer team hosts NCAA playoffs
Women’s soccer tallied another outstanding season in 2011, earning its way into the NCAA Division II playoffs for a third straight season and hosting two weekends of NCAA postseason competition for the first time in the program’s history. The Golden Eagles finished the 2011 season with an impressive 13-4-4 overall record and a national ranking of 12— the best end-of-the-season ranking in the program’s history.
Cross country team third in CCAA
Women’s cross country turned in an impressive performance at the 2011 CCAA Championships. Sabrina Lopez was fifth, Valerie Sanchez was eighth and Maritza Hernandez was ninth and earned All-CCAA honors while helping the Golden Eagles finish third in the conference.
Volleyball sees 15th winning season
Women’s volleyball made another impressive late-season run in 2011, but the surge left the Golden Eagles just outside of the NCAA Division II playoffs. The Golden Eagles, though, recorded a 15th consecutive winning season. Junior Marquis Mora earned American Volleyball Coaches Association All-America honorable mention honors after picking up first-team All-West Region honors.
Women’s basketball makes inspiring run to NCAA playoffs
Women’s basketball saw a remarkable turnaround, highlighted by one of the most memorable postseasons in the program’s history. The Golden Eagles finished the 2011-12 season with an 18-12 overall record and recorded their most wins since 2006. What made the season truly memorable, though, was an impressive run in the CCAA Championship Tournament. Rallying from an 18-point deficit in the second half, the team beat Cal Poly Pomona in the first round and came back from 12 points down to beat UC San Diego on a last-second 3-pointer from Lorin Hammer in the semis. Cal State L.A. rallied from 20 points down in the championship game to tie before falling on a buzzer beater to Cal State Monterey Bay.
Men’s basketball sees best record since 2001
After a successful 2011-12 campaign, men’s basketball moved even closer to the upper echelon of the CCAA. The Golden Eagles finished with a 17-10 overall record; a 13-9 record in CCAA play; and a conference record that was its best since 2001. The Golden Eagles finished just three games out of first place, the closest they’ve come to the conference title since 2000 when they finished just two games back. The Golden Eagles qualified for the conference tournament for the third straight season and for the fourth time in the past five years.
Women’s tennis ranks high for 2012 season
Women’s tennis successful season included a 13-5 dual match record, finishing ranked 13th in the nation, the program’s highest since 1993. Christie Lau ranked 18th in the nation in singles and the doubles team of Lau and Larn McShane was ranked eighth in late-season rankings. Sandy Kriezel was named the West Region Coach of the Year and Lau won the West Region’s Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholarship Award.
Baseball narrowly misses CCAA, NCAA playoffs
Baseball just missed in its bid to return to the CCAA and NCAA playoffs, with the Golden Eagles 26-22 overall and 21-17 in conference play. Daniel Duran’s record-breaking season resulted in his being named the CCAA’s Most Valuable Player. His batting record of .451 for the season eclipsed the mark of .440 set by Ken Lohnes in 1968.
Track and field second in CCAA finish
Men’s track and field nearly ended Chico State’s nine-year run as the conference champion. With 10 individual champions, the Golden Eagles missed taking the title by just 4.5 points. Giorgio Bryant was named the CCAA Track Athlete of the Year after winning conference championships in the 200, long jump and as member of two winning relay teams. Matthew Harmon won two hurdles titles, Julius Joseph defended his discus title, Glenn Rivera won the shot put title, Gregory Veals won the 400 and David Carcamo won the 100.
Women’s track and field third in tight conference meet
Women’s track and field finished third at the conference championship meet, just 10 points out of first. Cal State L.A. had seven individual conference championships. Tuekeha Huntley won titles in the heptathlon and long jump and was named CCAA Field Athlete of the Year. Title winners include Valerie Sanchez for the 800 and 1,500; Calista Lyon in the discus; Samantha Gutierrez in the javelin; and Te’Ahnalin Harris for the shot put.
All-America honors for indoor team members
Women’s indoor track and field team’s successful season included two All-American performances and All-West Region honors for eight team members. Tuekeha Huntley placed fifth in the pentathlon with a career-best 3,787 points, and earned All-America honors for a second straight season. Valerie Sanchez finished eighth in the mile to earn All-America honors for the first time in her CSULA career. Cal State L.A. finished in a tie for 26th in the NCAA Division II Championships hosted by Minnesota State University, Mankato.