Badger Sports Roundup

News from men's and women's basketball, men's hockey, volleyball, softball and men's golf

Men's basketball: Valentyn to walk on at Wisconsin.

Brett Valentyn, a senior guard at Verona High School, will walk onto the Wisconsin men's basketball team in the fall, the Wisconsin State Journal reported Wednesday. He averaged 11 points and 5.8 assists, earning honorable mention all-state honors. According to the State Journal, Valentyn was recruited by some Division II schools and several in-state Division III programs, such as Lawrence.

Women's basketball: Alexander released from scholarship

Akiya Alexander, a sophomore guard on the women's basketball team, requested and was granted a release from here Wisconsin scholarship, head coach Lisa Stone announced Thursday.

Alexander, who was academically ineligible for the spring semester, plans to transfer to Southern Indiana in Evansville, Ind. She averaged 4.4 points, 1.6 assists and 17.3 minutes in 13 games this season.

Alexander is the third member of her UW recruiting class to depart the program. Guard Shari' Welton left earlier this offseason and, according to the The Capital Times, is transferring to Northern Illinois. Lesha Jones, a former post player who redshirted her freshman year, left after she pled guilty to stealing a purse from a dorm room, and is now playing at Southeastern Illinois College.

Men's hockey: Elliott named team MVP at banquet

The men's hockey team held its annual banquet Friday night at the Edgewater Hotel, recognizing its five seniors and other members of the NCAA Championship team.

Junior goalie Brian Elliott was named the team's most valuable player after completing a season in which he led the country with a .814 winning percentage (27-5-3), 1.55 goals-against average, .938 save percentage and eight shutouts. He was named the College Hockey Player of the Month for March and April in Division I, after he set a new Western Collegiate Hockey Association record with a shutout streak that lasted 269 minutes, 52 seconds. That includes shutout wins over Minnesota, Bemidji State and Cornell — a team the Badgers beat in triple overtime to earn a spot in the Frozen Four.

Senior forward Adam Burish was named the Fenton Kelsey, Jr., Most Competitive Player for the second time (he also won it in 2003-04). The 2005-06 team captain tied the school record with seven WCHA short-handed goals. He earned Frozen Four All-Tournament Team honors after notching a goal and three assists.

Senior defenseman and assistant captain Tom Gilbert earned the Dr. Joseph Coyne Most Consistent Player award, leading the Badgers with a plus/minus rating of plus-28. He scored the game-winning goal in the national title game against Boston College.

Other award winners include: senior forward Ryan MacMurchy (Ivan B. Williamson Scholastic Award); senior forward Nick Licari (WHA-TV Jim Santulli 7th-Man Award, which is voted on by UW hockey fans); junior assistant captain Andrew Joudrey (W Club Community Service Award); Joe Piskula (Otto Breitenbach Most Improved Player Award); and Otto Breitenbach (Mel Ross Blue Line Club Award). Breitenbach is a former UW administrator and WCHA commissioner.

Joudrey has been named the 2006-07 team captain, while junior defenseman Jeff Likens and sophomore forward Joe Pavelski will be assistant captains.

Men's golf and softball win CHAMPS Cup

The Wisconsin men's golf and softball teams won the inaugural CHAMPS Cup, CHAMPS/Life Skills Coordinator Kelli Richards announced Thursday. The men's golf team finished with 1485.0 points, best among men's sports, while the softball team finished with a school-best 2370.3 points to lead the women's teams. The teams, which could earn points in six categories ranging from school spirit to athletic achievement to community outreach, will be recognized at the Academic Excellence banquet later this month.

Volleyball: UW names director of operations

Marijo Nelson, a former volleyball coach and teacher at DePere High School, was named the Badgers' director of volleyball operations, head coach Pete Waite announced. She replaces Karen Milborn, who took an assistant volleyball coaching job at Northwestern. Nelson will arrange team travel, oversee the budget, supervise public service activities, coordinate summer camps and training tables, and schedule day-to-day activities. She will also assist with the Wisconsin Power Volleyball Club.

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