May 1, 2002

Cornell's Top 10 Sophomores

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After a year on one of Cornell’s athletic teams, the sophomores are often counted upon to carry an increasing share of the workload when it comes to producing the success of the Red. In alphabetical order, the following are the 10 members of the Class of 2004 who were selected by the sports staff of the Cornell Daily Sun as the greatest contributors in their class to their programs’ overall achievements.

Andrew Collins, Men’s Lacrosse

In his second season on the East Hill, Collins has blossomed into one of the Red’s most explosive players. The attacker has netted 17 goals and has earned 14 helpers for a total of 31 points on the season, good for second best on the team. He had his coming out party in Cornell’s third game of the year, scoring a career-best seven points on four goals and three assists in the Red’s 16-4 thrashing of UMBC.

Karen Force, Women’s Basketball

The second year guard was a force on the court for the upstart Red in the 2001-2002 basketball season. Force, a tri-captain, earned an Ivy Honorable Mention award for the second consecutive year. She led the team in assists (119) and set a single-season school record with 70 steals. She was also second on the team in scoring at 11.5 ppg. The sophomore sensation picked up a single-game record of eight thefts against Coppin State in the Cornell Classic.

Rachel Goldberg Gymnastics

Goldberg was an integral part of the Red’s record-breaking season, in which the team seemingly set new team highs on a weekly basis. For the second consecutive season, she was named an All-American at the United States Gymnastics Association National Collegiate Championships, after placing third on the vault. Goldberg also placed on the vault at the ECAC Championships, finishing fifth.

Senter Johnson, Men’s Polo

The sophomore was a regular in the starting lineup for Dave Eldredge’s ’81 squad. Johnson was one of the Red’s primary scorers, and was an All-East selection during his first full campaign. Although hampered with a sore kneecap for parts of the season, he was arguably the Red’s most consistent player.

Carissa Mirasol, Field Hockey

The second-year attacker was named to the All-Ivy First Team after starring for the Red in 16 regular season games. Mirasol led the in scoring with 19 points on eight goals and three assists. Perhaps her most important goal of the season came in an overtime thriller against Lafayette, in which she netted the game-winner in the extra frame. She had two multi-goal games on the year, with two goals each against Syracuse and Michigan State.

Travis Offner, Men’s Track

Offner, a pole vaulter, excelled in his second season at Cornell. He finished fourth in the event at the prestigious Penn Relays, and he won with a height of 16-3 at the Lafayette Invitational. His most impressive feat of the year came during the Heptagonal Championships, when he became the first Cornell pole vaulter in 50 years to win. With a height of 5.00m, Offner sailed into the Cornell record books.

Debbie Quibell, Volleyball

After turning in an Ivy League Second Team performance in her rookie season, Quibell made the step up to the First Team in her second campaign. The Red’s star outside hitter led the squad in kills (3.63 kpg) and digs (3.17 dpg). She also paced Cornell with 0.45 service aces per contest. Her contributions helped the Red finish third in a toughly competitive Ivy League. During the season, she was named Ivy League Player of the Week once.

Sarah Sterman, Softball

With the graduation of Nicole Zitarelli ’01, Sterman has embraced the role of being Cornell’s top hurler. The sophomore has assumed her place as one of the league’s top pitchers, possessing the Ivy League’s third-best ERA (1.28). She’s also second in the league in strikeouts and is tops with 16 wins. Sterman has won the Ivy League’s Pitcher of the Week Award for two consecutive weeks and has positioned herself among the favorites for the Pitcher of the Year Award.

Kate Varde, Softball

After a spectacular rookie campaign in which she set the single-season home run record, Varde has followed with another solid season. The sophomore has been sure-handed while patrolling center field, and has continued to hit the ball with authority. She ranks second on the team in round-trippers (5) and in batting average (.351). She leads the Red in both runs scored with 33, and in hits, with 46.

Ryan Vesce, Men’s Hockey

Vesce did not disappoint in his sophomore campaign at Cornell, as he was an integral part of the Red’s vaunted power play unit. He was tied for fourth on the team with 30 points, which included 10 goals and 20 assists. Of his 10 tallies, eight of them came with the man advantage. With a penchant for scoring clutch goals, Vesce lit the lamp for game winners on three separate occasions.

Archived article by Alex Ip