The first weekend in March was the time for Virginia Wesleyan College’s winter sports teams to showcase their best performances in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) tournaments.
The men’s basketball team got a first-round bye and rallied their way through the weekend to win the ODAC championship title for the second year in a row. They took down Bridgewater College, Washington and Lee University and Hampden-Sydney College.
“I thought we gave a championship effort,” said head coach Dave Macedo.
The entire team pulled together to get the win in dramatic style, keeping the fans on the edge of their seats during the game. The scoreboard very briefly favored Hampden-Sydney in the championship game, but the Marlins’ confidence never wavered.
“It never went through our head that we weren’t going to win,” said senior Aaron Clark. The Marlins pulled through to win the championship game 77-74.
The women’s basketball team competed in the ODAC tournament as well, though with a different outcome. While the team managed to edge Hollins University in the first round, they fell to Guilford College 79-57 in the quarterfinals.
“The last game was a disappointment to all of us,” said sophomore Kelly Jones. “It was by far not our best game.”
Basketball wasn’t the only sport to see tournament recognition this month. The men and women’s track and field teams broke records and came home with hardware. The men’s team came back with a fourth-place finish while the women placed fifth with their highest point total ever as a team.
Senior Randy Lott set a record time in the 60-meter dash with 6.87 seconds. This time ranks him as the tenth-fastest in the nation for that event. Lott broke VWC’s record as well as setting an ODAC record in the 200-meter run with a time of 22.17 seconds.
Senior Courtney Mebane also held strong in the 60-meter by taking first place while sophomore Shakira Mills put up a program-record time of 7.90 in the 60 and junior Shakiella Daniel broke another program record in the 200.
“We had a lot of personal records at this meet, which gives us high hopes and motivates us for the outdoor season,” said Daniel.
All three teams played to the best of their abilities and all managed to shine bright for Virginia Wesleyan. Now each team faces different levels of competition as they look forward to what is to come.
The men’s basketball team will continue to compete in the NCAA tournament, the women’s basketball team will set a game plan for next season and both track teams will prepare themselves for the upcoming outdoor season.