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Davidson Wildcats picked 7th in A-10 preseason baseball poll

Davidson’s baseball team, coming off its best season in program history, was picked to finish seventh in its inaugural season in the Atlantic 10 in a vote of the league’s coaches.

The Wildcats, who finished 29-19 last season en route to a second-place finish in their final Southern Conference campaign, earned 96 points in the coaches poll. They finished six points behind Dayton (102 points, including a first-place vote) and 22 ahead of George Washington (74 points).

Saint Louis was voted the favorite to win the A-10 championship this season, earning six first-place votes and 161 points. That edged out Virginia Commonwealth, which had five first-place votes and 157 points.

The Saint Louis Billikens finished 34-21-1 last season, and return seven position players and 10 pitchers from last year’s Atlantic 10 tournament top seed. The VCU Rams finished 37-20 last season, and advanced to the A-10 tournament championship game.

Rounding out the rest of the A-10 coaches poll were defending league champion George Mason (one first-place vote, 128 points), Richmond (120), St. Joseph’s (106), Dayton, Davidson, George Washington, Fordham (73), La Salle (54), Massachusetts (44), Rhode Island (44), and St. Bonaventure (24).

Davidson, whose .604 winning percentage last season was the team’s best since going .639 in 1958, return four All-Southern Conference selections to this year’s team, including three first-team picks: outfielders Ryan Lowe and Lee Miller, and third baseman David Daniels. Outfielder Nathan Becker was a second-team pick.

Lowe hit .337 last season and started all 48 games for the Wildcats. Miller led the team with a .368 batting average, and was third in home runs (nine) and RBIs (36).

Daniels hit .332, one of five Davidson players to hit .300 or better, and led the team with 15 doubles, while Becker hit .314 and was second in both home runs (11) and RBIs (38).

Falvino gets head coaching job

Davidson assistant men’s soccer coach Tony Falvino got his first head coaching position, being named to head up Greensboro College’s program, school officials announced Jan. 29.

Falvino, an assistant coach with the Wildcats for three years, is the fifth Davidson assistant to move into a head coaching position.

“Tony has been an important part of our team for the last three years,” Davidson head coach Matt Spear said in a prepared release. “He has made a positive impact on our recruitment, student-athlete development and team success.”

Falvino, a 2006 Greensboro College graduate, was rookie of the year in the USA South Athletic Conference in 2002, and earned the conference’s player of the year award in 2005. He was also named to the USA South Athletic Conference’s 50th anniversary men’s soccer team in 2013.

After his graduation, Falvino spent time as an assistant coach at Francis Marion, Wingate and High Point before joining the Davidson coaching staff in 2012.

“I have had the pleasure to work alongside some great coaches and programs through the years that have helped prepare me for this opportunity,” Falvino said in a prepared release. “This opportunity to lead the Greensboro College men’s soccer program is all that more special as an alumni.”

Anundsen named to Colorado tennis HOF

Sara Anundsen, currently in her first year as Davidson’s women’s tennis coach, has been named to the Colorado Tennis Hall of Fame’s Class of 2015.

Anundsen, who took over the Wildcats’ program in July after Caroline Price retired after a 32 years, was one of four people inducted into the Hall of Fame during its 15th anniversary ceremonies held Jan. 27.

“I felt truly blessed to be inducted, and to celebrate with so many people who had an impact on my career,” Anundsen said in a prepared release. “Growing up, I was surrounded by some incredible people who taught me so much about tennis and myself.

“The lessons I learned along the way will continue to have an impact on the rest of my life, and my hope is that I will be able to pass them along to the young women I teach everyday here at Davidson.”

A three-time Colorado high school singles champion for Columbine High School, Anundsen was also among the nation’s top junior players, twice earning top-two rankings in the 16-under division.

She went on to star at the college level at North Carolina, teaming with Jenna Long to win the 2007 NCAA doubles championship, the first individual title in Tar Heels history. The duo finished the season with a 29-6 record, and earned a wild-card berth in the U.S. Open after being named the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s national doubles team of the year.

Anundsen remained at North Carolina as an assistant coach, helping the Tar Heels reach the NCAA tournament during her four years there. Last spring, UNC advanced to the NCAA dual-team national championship match before losing to UCLA 4-3.

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