Awards and Superlatives (Year in Review)

Call him Lombardi:

Volleyball’s Keylor Chan: Daily Sports Coach of theYear

In his third season, the NU volleyball team’s 17 wins was themost since 1990, and it was the first time NU had double-digit BigTen victories in five years. NU also reached the NCAAs for thefirst time since 1984 under Chan’s leadership.

Diaper Dandies (not named Grier):

Courtnay Foster: Ultimate Fanner

The softball team’s freshman pitcher finished the season withseven shutouts, a 1.32 ERA and 19 victories. Foster had 292strikeouts and averaged more than one ‘K’ per inning. Foster wasnamed National Player of the Week in late April.

T.J. Parker: Fantastique

Parker made his way during his freshman campaign. He averagedmore than 11 points a game and was second on the team in scoring,steals and assists. He showed he could take charge of a game andhis team. Tr�s bien.

Instant Classics:

Softball wins in 18 innings

The Cats beat Michigan State 1-0 in the first round of the BigTen tournament. In a game that lasted 4 hours and 54 minutes, thetwo teams’ pitchers combined to throw more than 600 pitches.

Football stays close with Ohio State

In the nationally televised night game, NU dominated thenational champs for three quarters. The Cats couldn’t convert theiropportunities and lost 27-16, but they gave 43,000 fans quite agame.

Men’s basketball beats Indiana

NU upset Indiana 74-61 to break a 15-year losing streak to theHoosiers and bring the fans pouring onto the Welsh-Ryan floor. Itgave the Cats their first win of the Big Ten season and served asMohamad Hachad’s coming-out party.

Gonna miss you:

Austin King and Jeff Roehl: “The Great Wall”

The departing NU offensive linemen were the heart and soul ofthe team. Coach Randy Walker couldn’t stop gushing over them. Bothwill be in NFL camps this summer, leaving NU after their fair shareof Austin King Specials.

J.D. Martin: “The Brick Wall”

In his first and last season at NU, the graduate student had aschool-record seven shutouts. Martin helped the Cats win seven moregames than the previous season. We were hoping he would come backfor a Ph.D, but he has already inked a deal with Major LeagueSoccer.

Kellan O’Connor: “The Speedy Submarine”

The swimmer finished seventh in the 200-meter butterfly at theNCAA championships. O’Connor earned seven All-American honors inhis NU career. In his final season, O’Connor led the Cats to 26thplace. And he doesn’t look bad in a Speedo.

Bringing the ‘A’ game:

“Bash Brothers” David Gresky and Anthony Wycklendt

The duo combined for 13 runs and 19 RBIs in the NU’s 36-10 winover Chicago State in April. Wycklendt hit for the cycle and hadtwo home runs. Gresky had six hits including a grand slam.

Courtnay “K-Cat” Foster

The freshman pitcher had 18 strikeouts in only seven innings ina win against Loyola-Chicago in April. It was the most Ks by an NUpitcher since 1987.

Raheem “The Glove” Covington

The senior shut down Michigan State wide receiver Charles Rogersin NU’s 39-24 loss. He held the second pick in the NFL draft to 3catches for 53 yards, and Covington had 2 interceptions.

Streak Snappin’:

Women’s basketball notches a Big Ten win

Cats snap a 43-game conference losing streak with a 52-46 winover Michigan State on Jan. 2. The losing streak lasted 1,075 days.Heck, everyone deserves to win once in a while.

Women’s tennis dominance challenged

NU’s 29-game Big Ten winning streak came to an end with a 4-3loss at Minnesota. The streak started in 1999 and included twoundefeated conference seasons. But just remember: It’s not aboutwinning, it’s how you play the game.

Streaking freshman

“The unhittable” Foster

The freshman hurler had a streak of 69.2 scoreless inningsbefore Big Ten-champion Iowa scored two runs off her in theconference tourney. Who says it’s easy to hit a softball?

“The unbeatable” Grier

The Cats’ No. 1 singles player won her first 28 matches of theseason before losing in the Elite Eight at the NCAA championships.Grier was undefeated in the conference and was named Big Ten Playerof the Year. Maybe she should think about pulling an Annika.

Making out the schedule

Hoosier Daddy

Indiana was the only team NU beat in both football andbasketball this season. Thanks for all the love, and calm down,Mike Davis, it’s gonna be OK. We just might return the favor nextyear.

Avoid corn, and world’s largest truck stop

Iowa crushed NU 62-10 in football and the Hawkeyes beat the Catstwice on the hardwood. And don’t forget about how Iowa knocked NUout of the Big Ten softball tournament. That was not nice. By theway, real football players don’t hold hands — we saw that onSenior Day.

Bringing out the fans:

Dollar Dog Day

Nobody knows what a hot dog is really made of. But then again,who cares when they’re only a dollar? We’ve got the munchies justthinking about it.

Girl Scout Day

Bringing hundreds of pre-pubescent young girls created ahomecourt advantage for the NU women’s basketball team thatstudents fail to provide. All that’s missing is the cookies. Ourfavorites are Thin Mints.

Awards and superlatives reflect the opinion of The Daily’sSports editorial staff