Globe West Sports Notebook

Bailey, Champney lead Wheaton basketball squad

Senior cocaptains Andrea Bailey (left) of Needham and Bedford’s Jenny Champney. Senior cocaptains Andrea Bailey (left) of Needham and Bedford’s Jenny Champney.
By Marvin Pave
November 29, 2009

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Wheaton College head women’s basketball coach Melissa Hodgdon has set the bar high for senior cocaptains Andrea Bailey of Needham and Jenny Champney of Bedford.

“They know they have to lead by example in practice, and therefore I know they’ll be the leaders on the court in games,’’ said Hodgdon, whose team was 17-11 overall last season, 9-4 in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference. “We won’t be successful if they don’t do that, and they know that.’’

A 5-foot-5 guard who starred at Needham High, Bailey averaged 7.5 points, 5.4 assists, 4.8 rebounds, and 1.8 steals per game last year for the Lyons. With 348 career assists through three games this season, she has a good shot at breaking the program’s 20-year-old mark of 430 assists.

The 6-1 Champney, who averaged 11.8 points, 6.1 boards, and 1.6 blocks last winter, is Wheaton’s career blocks leader and just 69 points shy of 1,000. Champney was named to the Durgala Memorial All-Tournament Team last weekend at host Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, where her performance included a 22-point, 10-rebound effort in a 78-53 loss to Richard Stockton College of New Jersey. Bailey chipped in with seven assists in the game.

“Jenny and Andrea appreciate the tradition we have built and they have been pivotal in bringing our freshman and sophomore classes along,’’ added Hodgdon, whose team was 1-2 going into today’s game at the University of New England. “I believe both will have individual bests this year. Teams focus on them and that is a great sign of respect,’’ their coach said.

Bailey was a Bay State Conference first-team selection in both basketball and soccer, and a two-year basketball captain at Needham High. She helped propel the Rockets to the Division 1 South sectional final her junior year.

Champney played on three state tournament-qualifying teams at Bedford High while earning Dual County League All-Star honors each season and hitting the 1,000-point career mark. She was captain of basketball, field hockey, and track and field.

They are joined on the Norton school’s roster by 5-7 freshman guard Hallie Vitagliano, a three-sport athlete at Newton North High.

League lauds Hanly’s play in NCAA soccer tournament
Westborough native Elyse Hanly, a senior at Washington University in St. Louis, was named the University Athletic Association women’s soccer player of the week after scoring in overtime to give the Bears a 1-0 victory over Illinois Wesleyan in the second round of the NCAA Division 3 tournament.

Hanly’s eighth career goal, and her third game-winner, sent UUA champions Washington (18-3-1) into the NCAA sectionals held last weekend at Augustana College in Rock Island, Ill.

Hanly and her teammates proceeded to top Wheaton College of Illinois on penalty kicks, 2-1, and Calvin College of Michigan by a 2-1 score.

The next stop for Washington, which was ranked 17th nationally in Division 3, is San Antonio and a berth in the national semifinals next weekend, where they will face Lynchburg College of Virginia on Friday afternoon in the Blossom Soccer Stadium.

“Elyse came back from an early season injury to play her best soccer,’’ said head coach Jim Conlon.

“She’s an explosive, special player whose service from the wing is extremely dangerous and she can score from a distance because of her powerful shot.’’

Hanly was a soccer team MVP and all-state selection at Westborough High, where she also lettered in basketball and lacrosse.

Daly aims hammer toward Olympics
Hopkinton’s Emily Daly, who graduated last spring from Dartmouth College with the Big Green women’s record in the hammer throw (194 feet, 8 inches), has her sights set on representing the United States at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.

“I’ve improved about 20 feet a year since I began throwing the hammer in 2006,’’ said Daly, the 2005 all-state champion in the discus while at Hopkinton High.

She has been training with Bill Sutherland, a Southern Connecticut State University coach, and former American women’s hammer record-holder Anna Mahon, a former Sutherland pupil who now coaches at Yale University.

Daly has established a website,, in an effort to tell her story and seek sponsors for her Olympic quest.

Here and there
Dean College’s football team, ranked 11th in the National Junior College Athletic Association poll and coming off its third consecutive Northeast Football Conference championship, will play in the Valley of the Sun Bowl on Saturday in Phoenix against host Glendale Community College. Dean (9-1), the highest ranked private school in the NJCAA, will be playing in its third bowl game in program history. Last fall, head coach Todd Vasey’s Bulldogs traveled from Franklin to Iowa where they were defeated, 20-10, by Iowa Central. . . The Westboro Tennis and Swim Club will host its annual Mutual of Omaha BREAKout! Swim clinic, featuring Olympic gold medalists Josh Davis and Misty Hyman, on Saturday from 1-5 p.m. For information call 508-366-1222. . . Westborough High graduate Amy Wilfert, a junior at Tufts University, achieved All-America status in cross-country by finishing 31st at last weekend’s NCAA Division 3 championships in Cleveland. She also earned All-America honors as a member of the Tufts distance medley relay unit that won the NCAA’s indoor track and field championship last winter. . . Timing was everything for Providence College senior men’s soccer forward Tim Ritter of Weston, whose five goals this season were all game-winners. Ritter helped the Friars finish 10-7-3 overall and reach the Big East Conference semifinals.

Marvin Pave can be reached at