UMES SET TO ROLL OUT ANOTHER HAWK CLASSIC
Nov. 15, 2012
MILLSBORO, Del. - Two seasons ago season the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) won the Hawk Classic for the first time. That was the beginning of several more wins, including the MEAC, NCAA and USBC Collegiate Titles. Last season Anggie Ramirez (Bogota, Colombia) won her second straight MVP Title leading her team to a fourth place finish. They were still able to turn that into another National Championship.
This year things are a little different, new head coach Kristina Frahm steers the ship of her first Classic as a coach and former assistant coach Doug Dukes has been replaced by Tyler Schmitz. Still, things remain the same, put on a great event hosting many of the nation's top teams and defend your home turf.
This season's Hawk Classic features a new logo and sponsor as the tournament is now officially, The Eastern Shore Hawk Classic, sponsored by Hammer Bowling.
The eighth annual UMES Hawk Classic gets underway Friday, November 16 at Millsboro Lanes in Millsboro, Del. and runs three days. It features an 18-team field that may be the best of any event in the nation as it features 13 of the nation's top 20 teams. It would have been a full 20, but due to a couple of late dropouts the field is set with two less programs. It also includes three more programs receiving notes in the National Tenpins Coaches Association (NTCA) poll.
The host site, Millsboro Lanes, has been the site for all seven previous events. While the location hasn't changed, the tournament has. What was a two day event featuring anywhere between 16 and 19 teams, now is a three day bowling extravaganza featuring 18 teams. The three day format began in 2008.
"This is really an undertaking, but well worth it" said Frahm. "We are really proud of how it runs, operationally and from a pure enjoyment standpoint. We keep doing it because the athletes and coaches keep coming back and having nothing but positive comments. Having bowled in this for four years, I know what it means to participate in a great event and we feel we put on one of the best tournaments in the nation."
While the hosts Lady Hawks have had some success in the past, they boast a 64-24 mark in the event, 2011 year was the first time they won, finishing over 500 pins better than runner-up Central Missouri State. They also posted two 1,200 pin performances that year, including a 1207 in team games that stands as the event record.
In total, the Hawks won the event in 2010, finished third twice, in 2007 and 2009 and were fourth last season in 2011 as they were in 2006 and 2008. However, UMES has never finished worse than fifth place in the tournament; they took that spot in 2005.
This year's field features the No. 1 Hawks, no. 3 Fairleigh Dickinson, and no. 4 Vanderbilt. It also includes no. 6 Central Missouri State, no. 7 Sacred Heart, no. 8 Sam Houston State, no. 9 Valparaiso and no. 10 Sam Houston State. Also there are no. 11 Norfolk State, no. 12 Kutztown, no. 13 New Jersey City, no. 15 Adelphi and no. 20 Delaware State.
Vanderbilt has had the most success in the event. After finishing third in the inaugural tournament, they won four straight titles from 2006-2009, including an 11-1 mark in `09. Last season they rebounded from 11th place in 2010 to win their fifth Hawk Classic title. FDU won in 2005 and placed third in 2006 and second in 2007, they were the runners up to Vanderbilt last year. New Jersey City was second the first two years of the event. Only Vanderbilt, FDU and UMES have won this event and they are only three of the four teams to have ever won a National Championship.
The Hawks hope to build on the performance last weekend when they went 9-1 at the first MEAC Northern Division meet. Action starts Friday at noon with five sets of quad-Baker games, continues at 9 a.m. on Saturday with five traditional team games and concludes 8:30 a.m. on Sunday with bracket play in a best four-of-seven game Baker format. All games are bowled on the NCAA Transfer Brush pattern number two.
Admission 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.