Happy Labor Day! The long weekend held a lot more than football’s season opener, as many fall sports continued their early-season streaks into September.
Ohio State broke ground on a 75,000-square foot tennis facility which will serve as the future home of the men’s and women’s teams. The Ty Tucker Tennis Center at the Auer Tennis Complex is named in honor of Ty Tucker, the director of the tennis program and head coach of the men’s team at Ohio State. Tucker, who himself was a two-time All-American while playing at Ohio State, is a 13-time Big Ten Coach of the Year, and has amassed an impressive 555-84 record as head coach in Columbus.
Along with the success of both the men’s and women’s programs in recent years, this facility serves as a major recruiting tool and is a mark of an elite program. Ohio State has continued to invest in new, dedicated facilities for other sports in addition to tennis, like the recently-opened Covelli Center which hosts volleyball, gymnastics, fencing and wrestling.
The 14th-ranked Ohio State field hockey team proved why it is one of the top squads in the nation as it destroyed UMass, 7-0, Friday in its season opener. The win was so dominant that the Buckeyes scored more goals than UMass attempted shots. Senior captain Esther Clotet Alsina led the team with two goals on the day. Next up, the women play Boston University today at noon in Columbus.
The women’s cross country team had a strong start to its season as it won the Miami Opener in Oxford, bringing home 19 points to take the lead. The Buckeyes took home the top-four finishing spots for the women, led by junior Abby Nichols with a time of 21:18.8. The men, meanwhile, earned a second-place finish with 56 total points. Next up, both the men and the women are scheduled to head to Tennessee for the Commodore Classic at Vanderbilt.
In addition to cross country, track and field is not taking a break as elite athletes compete on the international stage. Sade Olatoye, Ohio State’s outstanding thrower from a season ago, earned gold in the shot put in the African Games hosted in Morocco over the weekend. Alumna Maggie Barris also competed, taking home a fifth-place finish in the 200m dash.
The women’s volleyball team got a chance to break in the Covelli Center over the weekend as it hosted the Sports Imports D.C.Koehl Classic. The Buckeyes earned a second-place finish in the tournament, putting together a 2-1 performance to finish behind Texas Tech and ahead of VCU and Lehigh.
Three members of the women’s golf team were honored ahead of the start of the fall season, scheduled to open Sept. 16 in Toledo. Yukie Sasaki, Aneka Seumanutafa and Skylar Thompson were all recognized as Big Ten Golfers to Watch for the 2019-20 season. Seumanutafa, who joined the Buckeyes last January, shot a 72.0 average on her way to being named the 2019 Big Ten Freshman of the year and second team All-American in the 2018-19 season. Sasaki has a 75.1 average last season, good for third on the team, while Thompson posted a 76.0 average after transferring from South Carolina partway through the season.
Alumni golfers are also on the move this week. Daniel Wetterich, who played at Ohio State from 2016-19, won the Korn Ferry Tour pre-qualifier, an important step on the way to making the PGA Tour. As a next step, Wetterich is scheduled to play in the first stage of Korn Ferry Tour Qualifying, which runs Sept. 27-Oct. 7 at sites across the country.
Between women’s soccer’s Sunday match against South Florida being cancelled and the men’s team dropping its season opener Friday, soccer has had a bit of a rough week. The women now sit at 0-2-1 after tying Central Florida in double overtime last week, but have a chance to earn their first win against 16th-ranked Texas A&M on the road this Friday. The men, meanwhile, dropped a 4-3 decision against California State University Northridge Friday night, but have some bright spots already in the early going. Jack Holland, who is entering his senior season with the Buckeyes, scored two goals in the first half against CSUN. The men also bounced back Sunday night with a 1-0 win over UIC in Columbus. Next up, the men are scheduled to take on Dayton on the road Friday.