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Academy of Art Grateful for Student-Athletes' Winning Performances This Season

The first half of November gives Academy of Art University a lot to be grateful for. Thanks to the athletes and their hard work, the Urban Knights are a force to be reckoned with in NCAA Division II college athletics.

Here’s what our student-athletes have been up to so far in November:

No Signs of Letting Up: Women’s Soccer Finish with 5-0 Victory

Imagine the scene in your mind, if you can. November 2. City College of San Francisco Soccer Field.

The Knights have just come off a double overtime win against Dominican, in which the “golden” or game-winning goal was scored by the prolific senior forward Anissa Wilson—a header in the 104th minute.

That was then; this is now. It’s their final home match of the season. It’s Senior Day. Their opponent is Fresno Pacific. Would they rest on their laurels? Mail it in? Take the easy route?

No. No. And no. In the 90 minutes that follow, five different Urban Knights score goals, including two from seniors, including one from Ms. Wilson who tied the program’s career goals record. She’s been breaking records all season.

It should be noted that the shutout was not handed to the Knights. Despite the 5-0 score, Fresno Pacific took 20 shots, including seven on goal, all of which were stopped by junior goalkeeper Lara Pflcike.

When the Urban Knights walked off the field triumphant over Fresno Pacific, you get the sense that even though their season is coming to a close, they show no signs of letting up.

Personal Records Highlight NCAA DII Cross Country Regionals, Kaarour Makes Nationals

ART U WXC Hasna Kaarour
Women’s Cross Country Hasna Karoour. Photo by Natalia Novak.

It was high drama on a foggy morning at Ash Creek Preserve, November 9, for the 2019 NCAA DII West Regional Cross Country Championships. The men were led to a 10th place finish by graduate student Charlie Messai in the top 30.

Graduate student Hasna Kaarour lead Academy of Art to 16th as a team, posting a huge personal record on her way to a 12th place individual result. In an official November 11 announcement, Kaarour was named one of the 23 at-large individual qualifiers for NCAA DII Nationals to be held in Sacramento on November 23.

They don’t call her the Pacific West Conference Runner of the Year for nothing.

Stack ‘em Up. Stack ‘em Up. Volleyball Posts Seventh PacWest Win In Home Finale

Academy of Art University’s volleyball team have made their presence known in the Pacific West Conference this year.

First, there was the 3-1 victory (25-16, 25-20, 22-25, 25-19) over the Holy Names Hawks at Tobin Gymnasium on Oct. 30.

Then the Urban Knights topped Notre Dame de Namur 3-1.

ART U Voleyball Carly Evetts
Volleyball – Carly Evetts. Photo by Galen Manhard.

Then they took down Holy Names, again, beating them 3-1 in their last home match of 2019 on Nov. 14. ART U finished this one with its second highest hitting percentage of the year (.261) led by a season-high 16 kills from junior middle blocker Carly Evetts, who is hitting higher than .370 in each of her last four matches.

Strong Defense, Goal Adds Up in Men’s Soccer 1-0 Victory

It’s a recipe for success. Combine men’s soccer senior forward Andrew Deans’ first goal of the season in the 75th minute, with the shutout performance by sophomore goalkeeper Davis King, and good things happen. Like Academy of Art University’s 1-0 victory over Saint Katherine on Oct. 29 at Paul Goode Field.

Women’s Basketball Opens Year 2-0 in Come-from-behind Nail-Biters

WBB - Tayler Bennet
WBB – Tayler Bennet. Photo courtesy of PacWest

Women’s basketball provided fans with a thrilling start to the 2019-20 season with a pair of second half comebacks November 8 and 9 in Oregon.  

On November 8, a come-from-behind 18-1 run helped the Urban Knights beat Western Oregon 72-63.

On November 9, the Knights put up a 19-2 run that put Academy of Art in position for graduate student guard Tayler Bennett to seal the deal with a buzzer-beating layup.

The game-winner capped a 26-point performance for Bennet in the game. With 22.5 points per game and over 65 percent shooting from the field, Bennett earned the distinction of being the first Pacific West Conference Player of the Week this season.

“This win demonstrated the versatility of our team,” said head coach Krystle Evans. “Last year, we lost to Concordia by 30 so to compete and come out victorious shows the growth and buy-in of everyone on our roster.”

Men’s Basketball Lead by Coach Waterman Win Two in a Row

Men’s Basketball head coach Scott Waterman recorded his first win at the helm of the program at the PacWest/CCAA Challenge on November 9. Lead by junior guard Kai Tease’s 19-point game, and strong rebounding all around, Knights defeated Sonoma State 64-60.

MBB - Kai Tease
MBB – Kai Tease. Photo by Brett Bovee.

On Nov. 12 inside Pioneer Gym, Academy of Art came out fast and strong, gaining a 14-point lead in the first half. Junior guard Joshua Bagley’s 14 points led a trio of Urban Knights scoring in double figures. Impossible to catch, they logged their second consecutive win defeating Cal State East Bay 61-57.

“Tonight was a great team win,” said head coach Scott Waterman. “We got contributions from everyone, be it on the floor or on the bench. It was a test of our team character and we passed, but there is still room to grow.”

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