February’s top 10 moments in UB Athletics
10.) Baseball and softball open their seasons
The baseball team (3-3) and softball team (2-8) opened their season this month. The baseball team has been up and down but have scored 10 or more runs in half their games. Softball opened with a six-game losing streak but have been 2-2 since.
9.) Bryan Lantry defeats No. 10 wrestler in the nation
Sophomore 133-pounder Bryan Lantry, the No. 14 ranked wrestler in his weight class, defeated Northern Iowa sophomore Josh Alber in a 4-3 decision earlier this month. Alber is currently ranked No. 10 in the nation and received the first seed at 133 heading into the Mid-American Conference tournament. It was Lantry’s fourth victory over a ranked opponent this season.
8.) Nine track and field athletes named to all-MAC squads
The track and field team was awarded for a great season and its strong showing at the MAC championship. Senior Ryan Brillian, senior Joshua Gali, senior Craig Kiser, junior Mitchell Moore, senior Michael Morgan, freshman Gyasi Morris and junior Devon Patterson were all selected to the first team all-MAC squad. Graduate student Emma Siuciak and senior Ryan Cribbin were both second team selections.
7.) Women’s swimming has six athletes named all-MAC
With the season over, the women’s swimming team had six athletes named to all-MAC squads. Junior Megan Burns and sophomore Julia Box were both named to the first team all-MAC squads. Junior Sarah Baxter, senior Brittney Walters, senior Abbey Croce and junior Hannah Miller were selected to the second team. Baxter won silver at the MAC Championships as part of the 400 free relay team. Croce collected a silver medal in the three-meter dive and bronze in the one meter. Miller took silver in the 1650 free.
6.) Men’s basketball goes on six game win streak
The men’s basketball team (16-14, 10-7 Mid-American Conference) went on a six game win streak starting Jan. 31. They started the win streak with a 101-91 victory over the Central Michigan Chippewas. They averaged a 15-point margin of victory during the streak. Buffalo started the streak at 3-5. The six straight wins moved them into a tie for second in the MAC. The streak ended with a 77-69 loss to the Kent State Golden Flashes.
5.) Wrestling sets program record with four MAC wins
The wrestling team (11-6, 4-4 MAC) finished up one of its best regular seasons in program history. They put the exclamation point on it when they defeated the Northern Illinois Huskies 20-17 on Feb. 12. The victory marked the Bulls fourth MAC win of the season, a program record. The team defeated numerous nationally ranked wrestlers in February. Buffalo finished the regular season with five Bulls nationally ranked.
4.) Track and field earn 11 medals at MAC championship
The MAC indoor track and field championships took place during the last weekend of February. Buffalo finished with MAC titles in seven events. Junior Devon Patterson captured the first MAC title of the weekend when he won gold in shot put. Graduate student Emma Siuciak won silver in the pentathlon while breaking two of her own program records, including overall points in a pentathlon. Senior Joshua Gali, freshman Gyasi Morris, senior Craig Kaiser and junior Mitchell Moore won the MAC title in the 4x400 relay. Kaiser also captured an individual medal in the 800-meter. Senior Ryan Billian added a gold in the 60H. Senior Michael Morgan won gold in the heptathlon. The men finished third overall while the women finished tied for fifth.
3.) UB alum Khalil Mack wins Defensive Player of the Year
Former UB linebacker Khalil Mack made headlines this month when he was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year after a great season. He finished with 11 sacks and five forced fumbles. He is the first UB player to receive an NFL Honors award.
2.) Joshua Gali captures MAC title in three events, wins most outstanding track athlete
Joshua Gali had a huge weekend at the MAC indoor track and field championships. He won two individual golds. He finished with a time of 21.39 to win gold in the 200-meter. He also won gold in the 4x400 relay. He followed that up with a time of 47.50 to win gold in the 400-meter. He capped off the weekend when him and his teammates won the 4x400 relay. He was awarded with the Most Outstanding Track Athlete in the competition.
1.) Megan Burns wins MAC swimmer of the year
Junior Megan Burns has been named the MAC swimmer of the year. After a great season she dominated the pool at the MAC championships this past weekend. For the third straight year she won gold in the 50 free. Her time of 22.04 set the school, meet and MAC record. She added two more individual medals in the 100 free and the 200 free. She also picked up two team medals. She captured gold with her teammates in the 800 free relay and 200 free relay.
Daniel Petruccelli is the assistant sports editor and can be reach at email@example.com