Pifani tapped as ACC Defensive Player of Year
A long and distinguished career was honored Tuesday as University of North Carolina men’s lacrosse senior defenseman Austin Pifani was named the 2017 Atlantic Coast Conference Defenseman of the Year.
Pifani, a senior from Roslyn, Pa., was a captain of the Tar Heels’ 2016 NCAA championship team. He was also a captain for this year’s ACC championship team.
The Abington High School graduate has started every game he has played during his Tar Heel career. He missed three games in his junior and senior years because of injury but started 15 times in 2014, 17 times in 2015, 15 times in 2016 and 15 times so far this year.
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Pifani has 126 career ground balls, including 31 in 2017. He has 64 career caused turnovers, including 21 in 2017.
He is tied for 64th in career ground balls at UNC and is tied for second place in career caused turnovers with Michael Jarvis (2007-10).
Pifani is the first Tar Heel to win the defensive player of the year award in the league since the awards were split into offensive and defensive accolades.
Pifani was named All-ACC in both 2016 and 2017. He is a finalist for the 2017 Senior CLASS Award.
Elon: The team placed Erica Braschi, Olivia Lucas and Kirsten Ward on all-conference teams as the CAA announced the 2017 postseason awards on Tuesday. Braschi and Lucas earned All-CAA Second Team honors for singles and doubles, and Ward was named to the nine-member CAA All-Academic Team.
N.C. State: The No. 29 Wolfpack (18-10) is headed to Athens, Ga., for the NCAA tournament where it will face No. 40 Oregon (14-10) in the first round of competition, as announced Tuesday during the 2017 Women’s NCAA Selection Show.
UNC: ACC Champion Tar Heels received the No. 2 seed for the NCAA Division I Championship and were awarded one of 16 on-campus regional sites throughout the country. The Tar Heels will face Furman at 12 p.m. on Saturday.
Wake Forest: The team was selected to participate in its second consecutive NCAA tournament, as the tournament field was announced Tuesday. The Demon Deacons earned the No. 3 seed in the Columbia Regional and will face No. 2 Texas in the opening round.
Duke: The team earned its 28th consecutive bid to the NCAA Team Championships and enters the event for the 29th time in school history, the NCAA announced Tuesday. The Blue Devils were tabbed as a regional host site and will play the first and second rounds in Durham. The team garnered the No. 15 seed in the tournament and is set to face Boston University (11-10) in first round action May 12 in Durham.
Duke: For the 25th time in 26 seasons, the Blue Devils will compete in the NCAA Team Championship. The team will travel to Athens, Ga., for first- and second-round play. The Blue Devils (16-9) will take on South Florida (17-8) on May 12 in the opening round.
Wake Forest: For the first time in program history, the team has earned the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament as the field was announced Tuesday. The Demon Deacons will host a regional for the third consecutive season and will open the tournament against UNC Wilmington on at 5 p.m. May 12.
UNC: The Tar Heels have been awarded the No. 9 overall seed in the 2017 NCAA Division I Men’s Tennis Championship bracket and will host first- and second-round matches on May 12 and 13. In the May 12 first-round matches, the Heels will take on VCU at 1 p.m.
Elon: For the second year in a row, Felipe Sarrasague was named a First Team All-CAA singles performer, while Chris Humphreys and Petar Tomic garnered First Team All-CAA doubles recognitions, also for the second straight year. Salvador Mijares and Mario Paccini were named Second Team All-CAA singles players, marking the first time on an All-CAA team for Mijares and the second year for Paccini. Mijares and Neal Port also made Second Team All-CAA Doubles. Additionally, Tomic represents the team on the CAA All-Academic Team.
ECU: Former Pirate and multipurpose back James Summers has signed an undrafted free agent contract with the Arizona Cardinals.
UNC: Brian Miller walked and scored on a misplayed fly ball to right in the bottom of the ninth to give No. 3 Tar Heels a 5-4 win over Richmond on Tuesday at Boshamer Stadium. Zack Gahagan’s RBI single in the eighth tied the game after the Spiders scored four straight to take a surprising 4-3 lead, and the Tar Heels won in walk-off fashion for the second straight game in the ninth to improve to 37-9 on the year.
Elon: Facing the third-ranked hitting team in the nation Tuesday, Elon dropped a 10-3 decision to the visiting UNCG Spartans at Latham Park. The team will play its final road series of the season as the Phoenix heads to New York for a CAA set with the Hofstra Pride. The series is scheduled to open at 3 p.m. Friday.
St. Augustine’s: On Thursday, the Falcons will face Winston-Salem State University in the first round of the CIAA Championship Tournament at Whaley Colbert Field on the Virginia State University campus. Game time is 3 p.m. in the double-elimination tournament. The Falcons (18-32 overall) are seeded fourth after posting a 5-11 conference record. The Rams (31-16 overall) are seeded first after winning the regular-season title at 14-2.
Duke: Junior Leona Maguire has been named the ACC Golfer of the Month for April after finishing first at the ACC Championship two weeks ago. Maguire claimed her second ACC Championship medalist honor at the Reserve Golf Club at Pawleys Island, S.C., to lead the Blue Devils to the team title for the first time since 2014.
Campbell: For the second-straight year, both the men’s and women’s teams are heading to the NCAA Regionals. The women travel to the Albuquerque for the May 8-10 regional, while the men will learn Thursday which one of the six regional sites they will play May 15-17.
Elon: Philip Loeb and Charlie May were recognized with All-CAA honors. Loeb received All-CAA Second Team honors, while May earned a spot on the All-Academic Team.
Track and Field
St. Augustine’s: The teams moved up in the NCAA Division II men’s and women’s national rankings, which were released by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association on Tuesday. The Falcons men climbed one spot to fifth and the Falcons soared three spots to ninth.
UNC: Freshman Julia Scoles was named to the U.S. Collegiate National Team on Monday as one of 36 players who will train and compete in Minneapolis this June. Scoles is the second Tar Heel to be selected to a USA Volleyball program this summer, following Holly Carlton’s selection to the U.S. Women’s Junior National Team.
St. Augustine’s: On Thursday, the team will play Virginia State University in the first round of the CIAA Championship Tournament at Petersburg Sports Complex in Petersburg, Va. The contest begins at noon. The Falcons (15-12 overall) are seeded second in the Southern Division after posting a 7-3 divisional mark and an 11-4 conference record. The Trojans (12-21 overall) are seeded third in the Northern Division at 5-5 with a 7-9 CIAA record.
Duke: Starting this summer, 20 student-athletes from Duke and Stanford are set to take part in the Rubenstein-Bing Student-Athlete Civic Engagement Program. The program provides one-time funding for student-athletes to engage in a three-week international service project, and the first of four overseas initiatives will begin June 22.
From news releases