UMES OPENS HAWK CLASSIC WITH A PERFECT 5-0 MARK
Senior Megan Buja led the charge today as UMES went 5-0.
Senior Megan Buja led the charge today as UMES went 5-0.

Nov. 15, 2013

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MILLSBORO, Del. - A little home cooking was just what the bowling coach ordered for the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES). The Lady Hawks opened day one of the 2013 UMES Hawk Classic, their own tournament, with a perfect 5-0 record. UMES bowled well and stands in second-place overall, trailing first-place Central Missouri by just 104 pins.

Traditionally the Hawks have fared well in their event, having never finished worse than fifth in the previous eight years of the event, winning it in 2010 and 2012.

The day opened with recognition of all seniors in attendance and a special tribute to UMES' lone senior Megan Buja (Rockford, Ill.).

After a senior from each team threw out the first ball of the tournament to open practice, the Hawks got down to business.

They opened the tournament facing the nation's No. 2 team, Vanderbilt, just as they did in the first tournament of the year in New Jersey. And, just as they did there, they topped the Commodores for an opening win. This victory, 762-741, a 21-pin difference, was fueled by the solid play of Buja who bowled lead-off and Mariana Alvarado (Leon, Mexico) in anchor.

That pair, sandwiching Victoria Jones (Baltimore, Md.), Valerie Riggin (Vista, Calif.) and Sara Pelayo (Distrito Federal, Mexico) proved to be the trick, as head coach Kayla Bandy, coaching her first Hawk Classic, found success. While the three other Hawks in uniform, Tatiana Munoz (Ibague Tolima, Colombia), Justyne Falbo (Greensburg, Pa.) and Juliana Franco (Pereira, Colombia) all saw action as substitutes throughout the day, the team would finish with a perfect 5-0 mark.

Following the Vanderbilt win UMES topped No. 13 Sacred Heart 855-651, No. 7 Fairleigh Dickinson (FDU) 763-722, No. 17 St. Francis-Brooklyn 811-686 and closed by squeaking out a win over then 4-0 No. 16 Long Island 752-723.

That left UMES standing as the only 5-0 team on the day. Saint Francis (Pa.) was also unbeaten, but at 4-0, having bowled a bye during the day.

"We bowled well today," said Bandy. "The pattern gave us the ability to bowl to our strengths and we really got excited to bowl at home in our own tournament. We came out and really wanted to do well."

While UMES tallied 3,943 pins over the five games, they would sit in second place. The University of Central Missouri was on their game as well, tallying a 4,047 over their games while going 4-1 and taking their loss to MEAC school Delaware State. The Hornets bowled well, also posting a 4-1 record and standing in fourth, 146 pins out of first.

Kutztown University was in third at the end of day one with a 3-1 mark, 135 pins out of first. FDU stands fifth, 163 pins out of first. Norfolk State, Vanderbilt, Long Island, Saint Francis (PA) and Adelphi rounded out the top ten.

Play resumes tomorrow at 9:00 a.m. with five traditional team games and will continue throughout the day.

Admission to the Hawk Classic is free to the public. Members of the media are encouraged to attend and can call G. Stan Bradley at 410-845-6782 to arrange interviews and photos. The event will also feature a live stream with a featured pair where many of the teams will rotate through and fans can watch their team bowl. UMES will also keep social media accounts updated throughout each day and will post tournament updates on umeshawks.com.