Monday, November 30, 2009

Wilderness should return for Louisville game

Charlotte 49ers junior forward An'Juan Wilderness, who has missed the first five games of the season due to a calf injury, should be able to play in Saturday's game at Louisville, team officials confirmed.

While the 49ers are off to a 4-1 start, the have missed Wilderness, who has been one of Charlotte's top defenders since he arrived.

"An'Juan provides a toughness and an experienced level that we miss and some of it may be an intangible," said 49ers coach Bobby Lutz. "But at both ends he's a physically imposing player.

"Other guys have done well, but An'Juan is just a little bit different player. He'll get a tough rebound, he makes all those types of plays routinely that some guys try to make but can't make."

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Spears named co-Atlantic 10 player of week

Charlotte 49ers junior forward Shamari Spears has been named co-player of the week in the Atlantic 10 Conference for his performance over the past week.

The 6-foot-6, 238-pound transfer from Boston College has scored at least 20 points in each of his first four games with the 49ers.

Last week, he averaged 27 points and five rebounds in Charlotte wins over Yale and Hofstra. The former Salisbury High star scored 28 points on 13-of-15 shooting and grabbed six rebounds in the 49ers’ 88-74 win over Yale on Nov. 23. He had 26 points and a pair of blocks on Nov. 24 in Charlotte's 80-72 victory at Hofstra.

-In addition, Charlotte freshman forward Chris Braswell was named to the A-10's weekly honor roll after he averaged 7.5 points and eight rebounds in two 49ers wins last week.

Share your favorite Louisville game memories

In preparation for the Charlotte 49ers trip to Louisville in men's basketball, I'm going to look back at some of the biggest moments in the schools' rivalry, particularly while they battled in Conference USA.

What are some of your favorite moments from Charlotte-Louisville games? They can be good or bad, from wins or losses. I hope to share some of them in the story which will preview the game next Saturday.

Please share your thoughts in the comment section and leave your NAME and EMAIL address, so I can verify your comments if I elect to use them.

Some tidbits you may not recall: Twice in the 31-game history of the series, Charlotte won four straight against the Cardinals; Louisville's longest winning streak in the series was five in a row; and the 49ers own a perfect 3-0 record against Louisville in neutral site games.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Updated 49ers stats, roster and schedule

While I find a way to make a permanent home for some of this stuff on my blog site, I will update this items here after each game this season when they are posted.

Current men's basketball roster is here.

Updated men's basketball statistics can be found here.

Updated schedule can be found here.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Five games in, 49ers rank near top in A-10

Five games into the 2009-10 season, the Charlotte 49ers men's basketball team is off to a 4-1 start and comparing the 49ers' performance to other teams in the Atlantic 10 Conference shows some marked improvement in several areas over last season.

So far, Charlotte is third in the league in scoring offense (averaging 77.6 points a game; tops in free throw percentage (74.6 percent); third in rebounding offense (42.0 a game); second in blocked shots (6.0 per game); tied for second in offensive rebounds (14.2 per game); and third in defensive rebounds (27.8 per game).

In individual performances, Charlotte forward Shamari Spears leads the league in scoring, averaging 24.3 points per game (Spears has played in four of the 49ers' five games).

Among the other standouts: Freshman forward Chris Braswell is sixth in rebounding, averaging 8.4 per game; Senior point guard DiJuan Harris is third in assists (4.6 per game); junior Charles Dewhurst is tied for the league in free throw percentage, having made all 14 of his free throws; and center Phil Jones is third in blocked shots (2.6 per game).

You can view all of the A-10 stats here.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Nagy ninth in All-America Golf Classic

Charlotte 49ers three-time all-America Corey Nagy, a former standout at Vance High, shot one-over par 72 in the final round of the Western Refining All-America Golf Classic to finish in ninth place in the 32-player field.

Nagy was making his third appearance in the event, which attracts all-America golfers from the previous season.

Nagy shared the lead after an opening round of seven-under par 64 and fired one-over par 72 in each of the final two rounds to card a three-round total of five-under par 208.

Monday, November 23, 2009

A-10 tournament tickets on sale Friday

Basketball fans can purchase all-session tickets to the 2010 Atlantic 10 Conference basketball tournament on Friday at noon. Prices are $200 for gold, $100 for silver, and $75 for bronze.

Tickets may be purchased at the Boardwalk Hall Box Office, all Ticketmaster locations, by calling 800-736-1420 or at Fans interested in group sales or who wish to reserve seats in specific school sections can call 609-348-7021.

A new format will be used in 2010. The top 12 teams at the conclusion of the regular season will qualify for the tournament. First round games will be played on Tuesday, March 9, on the campuses of teams seeded Nos. 5, 6, 7 and 8.

The setting for the 2010 Championship then shifts to Boardwalk Hall as the quarterfinal round commences at noon Friday, March 12. Tip-off times for Saturday's semifinal action and Sunday's championship game are scheduled for 1 p.m.

Friday, November 20, 2009

It's early but Atlantic 10 ranks high

It's very early in the 2009-10 men's basketball season, but so far there's good news for the Atlantic 10 Conference.

As of Thursday, the 14-team conference was ranked third in conference RPI by and collectively the conference's strength of schedule was ranked the 12th best in the country.

The Charlotte 49ers (2-1), who suffered a lopsided loss Tuesday at Duke in the NIT Season Tip-Off tournament currently, have an RPI of 74. The 49ers have two more games in the tournament: vs. Yale on Monday and at Hofstra on Tuesday.

You can check out the rankings here.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

More soccer honors for 49ers

<>Charlotte 49ers men’s soccer freshman forward Jennings Rex was named to the second-team All-Rookie team. The All-Rookie team is what calls their freshman All-American teams.

Rex played an integral role on a 49ers team that was nationally-ranked much of the season and earned its first invite to the NCAA Tournament since 1997.

<>Men’s soccer senior midfielder Adam Gross was named first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American. Gross, the 49ers team captain, was also named the Atlantic 10 Conference men's soccer student-athlete of the year.

<>Women’s soccer senior midfielder Hailey Beam was named ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American for the second consecutive year. Last week, Beam was named to the third-team’s National Team of the Season for the second consecutive year.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Charlotte to play Yale, Hofstra next in NIT

The next round of games for the Charlotte 49ers in the DICK'S Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off have been announced:

Monday, Nov. 23 - Charlotte vs. Yale at Hofstra, 4:30 p.m.

Tuesday , Nov. 24 - Charlotte vs. Hofstra at Hofstra, 7:00 p.m.

Former soccer star Heaney returns to Charlotte

Aiden Heaney has an unusual job tonight.

Heaney, one of the players most responsible for sending the Charlotte 49ers men’s soccer team into its first NCAA Tournament in 1991, will do his best to kick the 49ers out of this one.

As a player, Heaney was a two-time most valuable player as goalkeeper and academic all-American and still holds the record for career shutouts and goals against average.

Now as head coach of UNC Wilmington (14-2-4), he must try to defeat Charlotte (11-3-5) in a first round matchup in the NCAA Tournament at 7 p.m. Thursday at the 49ers’ Transamerica Field. The winner will play at 1 p.m. Sunday at No. 3 Wake Forest.

Now in his 10th season at the helm of the Seahawks (104-93-15), Heaney has established the Seahawks as a perennial challenger for the title in the Colonial Athletic Association.

“We’re excited to be in the tournament and eager to get on the field,” said Heaney who had his number retired at Charlotte in 2003. “Charlotte is a quality opponent who has a solid season. They are a dangerous opponent who already have a win at Wake Forest to their credit.”

The 49ers hold a 6-5-2 mark in the all-time series, including a 3-1 win in 2008 at Wilmington in the UNCW/Courtyard by Marriott Classic. Wilmington’s last win in the series came in 1983, a 3-1 victory in Charlotte.

Charlotte went undefeated this season at home (5-0-2) and owns wins over three NCAA Tournament participants - Wake Forest, Winthrop and Saint Louis, which won the Atlantic 10 tournament.

Senior Adam Gross leads the 49ers in goal scoring with eight, Evan James has seven and former Watauga High star Jennings Rex, a freshman, has six.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Observations from Tuesday's 49ers-Duke game

<>In the first half, Boston College transfer Shamari Spears appeared the only 49er not intimidated or in awe of the surroundings. He had experienced the atmosphere before while playing for the Eagles. His last game in Cameron Indoor Stadium with Boston College consisted of 10 points and six rebounds in a 90-80 Duke win in February 2008.

<>Some early-game props for the 49ers: When Charlotte was staying respectably close, one Duke student shouted, “This is a real team dude, not Coastal Carolina.” The Blue Devils had beaten the Chanticleers 74-49 on Monday night.

<>Charlotte may have been over-matched in talent, but the 49ers contributed to their own problems, particularly in the first half, with bad passes, rushed shots and silly mistakes like botching a routine inbounds pass.

<>Former 49ers golf coach Jamie Green, who left last season to become the coach at Duke, watched the game with the 49ers fans.

<>Derrio Green actually ended up with more minutes played (25) than DiJuan Harris (23). Green looks more comfortable spelling Harris at the point but is struggling with his shot right now.

Hailey named A-10 rookie of the week

Charlotte 49ers women's basketball freshman Jennifer Hailey was named the Atlantic 10 Conference's rookie of the week for her play in Charlotte's season opener last Friday.

Hailey, a 6-foot-3 forward who played at Forest Hills High, came off the bench to score a game-high 17 points in 19 minutes of action.

Hailey came one rebound short of a double-double. She also had two seals and was 5-ofor-7 from the free throw line.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Men's soccer is NCAA bound

A tough schedule and some big wins brought the Charlotte 49ers men’s soccer team an end-of-the-season bonus on Monday.

Although the 49ers (11-3-5) were eliminated from the Atlantic 10 Conference tournament last week by host Rhode Island, Charlotte received an at-large invitation to the NCAA Tournament - its first tournament invite since 1997.

Charlotte will host Colonial Athletic Association champion UNC Wilmington (14-2-4) at 7 p.m. Thursday at Transamerica Field.

“This is a true reward for the hard work our players have put in this season,” said 49ers coach Jeremy Gunn. “I think what I’m most proud of is how our players have continued to play fantastic soccer.

“On some days were finished more of our scoring opportunities. On some days we didn’t. But they’ve always played hard.”

Thursday’s winner advances to a matchup at No. 3 seed Wake Forest (14-3-3) at 1 p.m. Sunday. The 49ers defeated the Deacons 3-1 earlier this season.

The Seahawks are coached by former 49ers soccer standout Aidan Heaney, who as goalkeeper led Charlotte to its first NCAA appearance in 1991.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Bowden, Jones earn A-10 recognition

Charlotte 49ers freshman shooting guard Shamarr Bowden was named co-Atlantic 10 Conference rookie of the week for his performance in the 49ers' season-opening win Friday night over UNC Asheville.

Bowden, who redshirted last season due to a knee injury, scored a game-high 21 points including four consecutive 3-pointers in a span of 66 seconds that helped Charlotte to a 86-70 victory.

Charlotte 6-10 center Phil Jones was also recognized in the A-10 Weekly Honor Roll after establishing career highs in points (16) and rebounds (12) in the 49ers’win over the Bulldogs.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Spears will also miss season-opener

Charlotte 49ers forward Shamari Spears, a transfer from Boston College, has been suspended for Friday's season opener against UNC Asheville.

Spears is serving a one-game suspension for a a violation of an unspecified team rule, school officials said.

The 49ers will now be without at least three players for Friday's opener. Freshman Gohkan Sirin must serve a NCAA-mandated one-game suspension for participating in a professional club team and junior forward An'Juan Wilderness will miss 2 to 4 weeks due to a calf injury.

Senior point guard DiJuan Harris, who sprained his ankle in practice last week, is probably for Friday's game.

Spears, a 6-6, 245-pound forward, is expected to give Charlotte a dominant inside presence this season. He had 26 points, four rebounds and was 12-for-12 from the free throw line in Charlotte's 91-70 exhibition win over Johnson C. Smith.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Nagy leads Charlotte at Gifford Collegiate

Senior all-American Corey Nagy used a string of five straight birdies to post a six-under par 66 and lead Charlotte to the best round of the day at the Gifford Collegiate at CordeValle.

The 49ers shot 13-under par, the day's best round by three strokes, to climb into fifth place entering Wednesday's third and final round.

Stanford shot 10-under par to move into first place at 16-under par while Oklahoma State and first-round leader Duke are tied for second at 15-under par. Charlotte is six strokes off the lead at 10-under par.

Team scores:
1 Stanford -16 F -10 354 350 704
T2 Oklahoma State -15 F -7 352 353 705
T2 Duke -15 F -5 350 355 705
4 UCLA -11 F -7 356 353 709
5 Charlotte -10 F -13 363 347 710
6 Augusta State -9 F -5 356 355 711
7 Lamar -7 F +1 352 361 713
8 Southern California -5 F +2 353 362 715
T9 Arizona +2 F E 362 360 722
T9 Colorado +2 F -6 368 354 722
11 Northwestern +4 F E 364 360 724
12 Oklahoma +12 F +4 368 364 732
13 Ohio State +14 F +6 368 366 734
14 Long Beach State +23 F +1 382 361 743

Freshman G/F Gohkan Sirin will miss opener

Charlotte 49ers freshman guard/forward Gokhan Sirin, a native of Istanbul, Turkey, will serve a one-game NCAA suspension for participation with a professional club team.

Sirin will miss the 49ers' season-opener vs. UNC Asheville on Friday at Halton Arena. Sirin averaged 17 points and seven rebounds at St. Mary's Ryken High in the Washington (D.C.) Catholic Athletic Conference.

In addition, the 49ers will be without junior wing An'Juan Wilderness, who will miss 2 to 4 weeks with a left calf strain.

Updates of other injuries: Senior point guard DiJuan Harris is day-to-day with a right ankle sprain suffered in practice Friday; red-shirt freshman Shamarr Bowden, who suffered a dislocated left shoulder Oct. 24, is probable for Friday; and junior Charles Dewhurst has been given the green light to play in games without his knee brace.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Men's soccer begins A-10 tourney Thursday

The Charlotte 49ers men's soccer team (11-3-4) is seeded fifth in the Atlantic 10 Conference tournament which will be played Thursday to Sunday at Rhode Island.

The 49ers face fourth-seed Rhode Island (9-8) in the second A-10 Tournament quarterfinal at 7:30 p.m. Thursday. Charlotte, who is looking for their first A-10 Tournament title, reached the championship game of the 2007 tournament.

Defending champion Dayton is the top seed after capturing the regular-season title. Saint Louis is seeded second. Dayton and Saint Louis have each earned first-round byes. Fordham and St. Bonaventure round out the 2009 Atlantic 10 tournament field.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Flyers defeat 49ers for title

The Dayton Flyers made a big shot, then survived the Charlotte 49ers' last, best one to take a 2-1 victory in the Atlantic 10 women's soccer tournament championship Sunday at TransAmerica Field.

Jerica DeWolfe rocketed a 35-yard shot into the top left corner of the goal with 3 minutes, 13 seconds left to send the No. 24 Flyers (16-0-5) to the NCAA tournament and break Charlotte's two-year hold on the conference championship.

Dayton, the top seed in the league tournament, had to survive a frantic last 10 seconds to get there.

Read the rest of Keith Cannon's story.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Nearly $4 million raised toward 49ers football

With its official marketing campaign over and self-imposed Oct. 15 deadline passed, the Charlotte 49ers have raised nearly $4 million toward a $5 million goal to start up a football program in time for the 2013 season.

As of Thursday, 3,181 football seat licenses have been sold. With the cost of FSLs ranging from $1,000 to $2,500 each, that translates into $3.9 million.

The original recommendation by chancellor Philip Dubois to the school's board of trustees called for the sale of 5,000 FSLs at $1,000 apiece to raise $5 million in startup funds.

Although the campaign is over, school officials continue to operate on the same timetable pending a decision by the board of trustees to the contrary and FSLs still can be purchased.

Currently, the only way non-students can be guaranteed a seat at a Charlotte football game is through the purchase of an FSL. Little if any general admission public seating is anticipated.

For more information, visit

Thursday, November 5, 2009

49ers baseball releases 2010 schedule

The Charlotte 49ers will face four teams that made the NCAA Tournament, including a pair of NCAA Super Regional participants and one team that advanced to the College World Series last season as part of their baseball schedule.

Charlotte will play 23 of its first 28 games at its Hayes Stadium. Charlotte is 59-20 at home since the new stadium opened in 2007 (.747 winning percentage) and 28-11 in conference games (.718 winning percentage).

Charlotte is one of just 17 teams in the country with a Top-75 winning percentage (.600 or greater) in each of the past four seasons. Charlotte is 160-70 in that span, a winning percentage of .695, which is ninth in the country.

You can view the 2010 schedule here.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A-10 reveals men's basketball TV schedule

The Atlantic 10 Conference announced the men's basketball TV schedule for the 2009-10 season on Wednesday. The slate consists of 132 televised contests representing 205 appearances, including the title game of the 2010 Men’s Basketball Championship on Mar. 14 from Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, N.J., at 1 p.m. on CBS.

Among the highlights:
- 73 A-10 matchups will air on television this season, an increase of 25 percent from a year ago.
- An 18 percent increase in the total number of television appearances from last season.
- Greater distribution in A-10 media markets.
- ESPN will televise 32 men's games on its three networks as part of its college basketball package representing 41 appearances.
- 10 games will be carried nationally on CBS College Sports Network, including the semifinals of the 2010 A-10 Championship.
- 32 league contests will be part of CBS College Sports Network’s syndication package, including the quarterfinals of the A-10 Championship.

The complete schedule can be seen here.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Bowden could return for season opener

INJURY UPDATE: Freshman shooting guard Shamarr Bowden will miss Thursday night's exhibition against Johnson C. Smith with a separated shoulder he received in the 49ers’ Green-White scrimmage. However, he could return as soon as the season opener Nov. 13 against UNC Asheville at Halton Arena. … Junior forward An’Juan Wilderness has a strained calf muscle but is probable for Thursday's game with Smith.

Men's soccer 25th in Soccer America poll

Soccer America Men's Top 25
1. Akron (16-0-0) 1
2. North Carolina (11-2-2) 3
3. Wake Forest (12-3-2) 2
4. UC Santa Barbara (13-3-1) 7
5. UCLA (9-3-2) 4
6. Maryland (10-4-2) 8
7. Louisville (13-2-2) 9
8. Connecticut (10-3-3) 5
9. South Florida (12-3-2) 6
10. Virginia (10-3-2) 12
11. Harvard (10-3-1) 14
12. Monmouth (15-1-1) 15
13. Duke (12-4-0) 17
14. Stanford (10-4-2) 18
15. Northwestern (9-3-4) 10
16. N.C. State (11-4-1) 11
17. Tulsa (10-4-1) 20
18. St. John's (7-2-8) 22
19. San Diego (11-4-0) 23
20. Penn State (10-5-2) 25
21. UAB (12-3-1) 25
22. Butler (11-2-1) 13
23. Missouri State (11-3-2) NR
24. Michigan State (10-4-2) NR
25. Charlotte (10-2-4) 16
25. San Diego State (6-4-5) 24
25. Boston College (10-7-0) NR

Monday, November 2, 2009

Niner athletes earn several honors

-Charlotte 49ers senior all-America Corey Nagy earned his second Atlantic 10 Men's Golf Performer of the Week honor of the season while teammate Andy Sajevic was tabbed as the A-10 Rookie of the Week for the second time.

Nagy fired a four-under par 68 in the final round of the Aldila Intercollegiate to climb into fourth-place overall. Sajevic posted rounds of 73, 72, and 71 to finish the Aldila Intercollegiate in 17th, his second top 20 finish of the fall.

-Freshman midfielder Donnie Smith, who played at Charlotte Catholic, was named to’s National Team of the Week for his performance this past weekend at Xavier.

He recorded his first career multiple goals game when he scored Charlotte’s first two goals in the 49ers' 3-2 win at Xavier on Sunday.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

49ers host A-10 women's soccer tournament

2009 Atlantic 10 Women’s Soccer Championship
At Transamerica Field, Charlotte, NC

Thursday, November 5
No. 4 St. Bonaventure vs. No. 5 Saint Louis - 5:30pm
No. 3 Fordham vs. No. 6 Massachusetts - 8:00pm
Friday, November 6
No. 2 Charlotte vs. Highest Remaining Seed - 5:30pm
No. 1 Dayton vs. Lowest Remaining Seed - 8:00pm

Sunday, November 8
Final - 1:00pm