Men’s and women’s swim teams finish their seasons, baseball starts off the term with training in Florida


Courtesy of Baruch Athletics

Isaiah Hinton

 relay that finished 15th in the 200-yard medley relay, joining co-captain Nicole Ousmanova and Asimina Hamakiotes. Ousmanova and Hamakiotes, who were also named CUNYAC All-Stars, broke records in the individual events.

 Ousmanova broke her personal record in the 50-yard backstroke, while Hamakiotes eclipsed her personal best in the 50-yard butterfly. 

As a squad, the ladies finished in 21st place. However, the men did not fare much better, finishing 20th as a team. 

The defending CUNYAC Champions competed in the 200-yard freestyle relay, with a squad consisting entirely of CUNYAC All-Stars, including CUNYAC Performer of the Year Evan Nikolic. Nikolic, along with Morgan Welling, Gary Danilyan and Dayan Ordabayev finished in 16th place. 

In the 200-yard medley relay, Nikolic, Ordabayev, Welling and senior Erik Kantar finished in 15th place. 

The Bearcats’ performance in the ECAC Finals does not take away from the impressive campaigns put on by both the men and the women this season, continuing a Bearcat dynasty in the pool. 

From the pool to the diamond, the baseball team had its opening day against the Raiders of Rutgers-Newark. 

Playing for the first time as defending champions, the Bearcats jumped out to an early seven-run lead, taking advantage of three errors and a passed ball committed in the first two innings by Rutgers-Newark. Designated hitter Eric Diaz had a two-run base hit to blow the game open, and second baseman Theodore Avgerinos had three hits, along with four runs scored. 

Although Rutgers-Newark’s first baseman Connor Clare was a thorn in the side of Baruch, driving in four of the Scarlet Raiders’ six runs, the pitching did its job in limiting the Raiders’ output. 

Paul Sirakowski earned the win, pitching two innings of two-run ball. Matthew Lawlor got out of a bases-loaded jam in the bottom of the fourth unscathed, and the trio of Robert Roman, Hasan Deljanin and Nicholas D’Angelo finished out the game for Baruch, giving up only one run in five innings of work. 

After this game, Coach Jose Torres and the Bearcats went to the Sunshine State for seven consecutive days of games. 

In the first round of games, the Bearcats outclassed and outplayed their opponents, the Rivier University Raiders. 

Baruch outscored Rivier 34 to 3 over the two games, registering 39 hits in a remarkable 14 innings of play. 

In the first game, left fielder Thomas Drouin, catcher Luke Lombardi, and Diaz all went perfect in the batter’s box, with each player driving in one run. 

Right fielder Kevin Linitz drove in two runs and Coach Torres was able to utilize his full roster, making defensive substitutions and pinch-hitting on multiple occasions throughout the game. 

On the mound, it was a masterclass by Sirakowski, who pitched a complete-game shutout, striking out nine. The second game was more of the same in terms of outright domination. 

The substitutions produced for the Bearcats, as center fielder John Lluvera and designated hitter Jacob Auerbach knocked in two runs each. 

Third baseman Liam O’Gara also had two runs batted in, catcher Nicholas Umile had three hits and right fielder Steven Patterson drove in three runs. On the mound, Benjamin Akerman earned the win, pitching three innings as a starter. 

On the court, the men’s tennis team resumed their season play, defeating the Maccabees of Yeshiva University 5 games to 4. 

The Bearcats played three doubles matches, losing two of them. Abhinav Srivastava and Christopher Tham registered the only doubles win for Baruch and won their singles matches in straight sets. The Bearcats won an additional two singles matches, courtesy of George Arteaga and Daniel Marshall. 

The young Bearcats improve to 2-1 on the season and face the Valiants of Manhattanville College before playing the Purchase College Panthers and starting CUNYAC play. 

On the volleyball court, the men continued their undefeated record in conference action with a resounding sweep of the Medgar Evers College Cougars. 

The first set saw the Bearcats jump out to a ten-point lead and never look back, winning 25-18. Baruch registered 13 kills in the first set, including three kills from co-captain Steven Lopez, Artem Zinkin and Matthew Tsororos. 

The second set was the closest in terms of score, with neither team able to build a lead larger than five points. However, it was the Bearcats that held control, especially due to the play of Evan Takos, who had five kills in the set. 

The second set ended with Baruch winning 25-22, and the result seemed to deflate the Cougars, as the Bearcats blew away Medgar Evers in the final set, winning 25-7. 

Tsororos, who made his season debut, led the Bearcats with seven kills, while Lopez and Takos each had six. 

Co-captain Stallone Shankar was the general on the court, recording 30 assists for Baruch on the night. 

The volleyball team plays the Thunder of Trine University before resuming conference play with a CUNY Tri-Match against the Beavers of CCNY and the Cardinals of York College.

Finally, on the basketball court, the Bearcats took on the Bulldogs of Brooklyn College for the third time this season. 

However, this game was for all the marbles, as it was the CUNYAC Tournament Final. The high stakes did not phase the team, according to Coach John Alesi, and they did not underestimate their opponents either. 

“I thought we were very prepared for the game. Brooklyn is a really good team this year, they were picked to finish first in the league this year,” Alesi posited.

 “They had an uneven year. They are a tough matchup for us, senior guards and a senior-heavy team with a lot of experience and a lot of playmakers.” 

In the beginning of the game, it was not so much the Bearcats starting slow as it was Brooklyn who started fast, who put up ten unanswered points. 

“Early in the game, we settled for a number of threes, which if they go in look great, but when you miss, you give the defense more confidence”, said Alesi. 

However, the Bearcats seemed to gain confidence themselves, scoring ten unanswered to tie the game. That was as close as Baruch came to a lead in the first half, with senior captain George Smyth Jr. almost posting a first half double-double with 8 points and 10 rebounds. 

Down 36-27 entering halftime, Coach Alesi preached aggressiveness for the second half. “We were a little bit on our heels, Brooklyn came out early and got off to a great start, and I felt we did a great job of handling that initial run, and answering it with a ten point run of our own.” said Alesi.

The second half saw a valiant comeback from the Bearcats. Led by nine points from Adnan Bajrami and three consecutive three-point jumpers from Ryan Graziano, Baruch had drawn the game close, even giving Baruch the lead with three and half minutes to go. 

In the waning minutes, the Bearcats had no choice but to foul and hope that Brooklyn missed their shots from the charity stripe. 

The veteran of the Bulldogs held firm, and Brooklyn ran out the clock and emerged champions beating Baruch 62-55. The loss unfortunately condemned Baruch to the ECAC Tournament.

Editor’s Note: Erik Kantar is the Photography Editor of The Ticker.