Stiemsma ineligible for remainder of season

first_imgYANA PASKOVA/Herald PhotoFor the second time this week, the Wisconsin men’s basketball team has lost a player due to academic ineligibility.Sophomore forward Greg Stiemsma was declared ineligible for the Spring semester, meaning he can participate in practice but cannot play in games or travel to road contests, the team announced in a press release Tuesday afternoon.”I’ve been dealing with depression which caused me to take a leave of absence from the team and also affected my academic performance,” Stiemsma said in the release. “That has resulted in me being academically ineligible this semester.”His announcement ended a week’s worth of speculation by the media and fans, who became optimistic when Stiemsma returned to practice after a short leave earlier this week. Unfortunately, Tuesday’s announcement was not the one they were looking for.”Obviously it’s something that he wanted to do, to get it off his chest, and now you move on,” UW head coach Bo Ryan said. “Things don’t always go the way we want them to. But we’ll deal with them, and we’ll get him help … that’s what we’re here for.”Though he cannot participate in games, Stiemsma said he would remain dedicated in helping his teammates prepare for upcoming contests.”I have taken steps to treat my depression and intend to work hard to resolve my academic issues. I look forward to competing in practice and helping my teammates in any way I can,” Stiemsma said. “I ask for understanding regarding my condition and appreciate the patience of everyone as I deal with it. I would like to thank my teammates, coaches and the fans for their support.”Stiemsma played in 16 games this year for Wisconsin and was quickly becoming a high-energy defensive presence before originally taking a leave of absence from the team. He was averaging 2.8 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.5 block shots per game while playing more than 11 minutes per contest.”Stiemsma, he seemed to be really active and he played well in the games I saw [on tape},” Penn State head coach Ed DeChellis said. “It cuts down their rotation and what they can do.”Earlier in the week, freshman Marcus Landry announced that he was academically ineligible for the rest of the season.Redshirt freshman DeAaron Williams also left the team over the Winter Break.The loss of the Stiemsma and Landry leave the Badgers with just seven players who contributed substantial minutes every game over the first half of the year.Ryan, who has been known for sticking up for his players who get caught in sticky situations, wasted little time in sticking up for Stiemsma after Wednesday’s victory.”If a student athlete is going through a process, then it is absolutely in their best interest that they exhaust all options,” Ryan said. “Understand this, when these young men have issues, they are just like an employee in the state system. They have all the rights in the world to exhaust every option.”Go ahead, get on your high horses again and say I’m wrong. You can say I’m wrong, but I’ll tell you what, in this country and our society I am right. People have privacy issues and privacy rights, as a student-athlete.”last_img read more

Badgers bounce back, defeat Penn State on Senior Day

first_imgNielsen Tennis Stadium was initially filled with disappointment and later celebration this weekend as the Wisconsin men’s tennis team competed in its final regular season home matches of the year.The Badgers got off to a rough start Friday when they were shut out by the Ohio State Buckeyes, but after the intimidating events of Friday, Sunday’s match began with a celebration.It was Senior Day at Nielsen, and the Badgers honored their sole senior captain, Marek Michalicka. Soon after his achievements were recognized, the Badgers began their battle with the Penn State Nittany Lions.Doubles play was bittersweet for UW, as Russell Bader and Eddie Bourchier of PSU upset Michalicka and Billy Bertha, 8-3. The No. 1 pair was forced to cheer its remaining teammates from the sidelines in hopes that they could pick up the slack to pull off the doubles point win.“We came out and expected to win,” Bertha said. “But they came out with a lot of energy and hopped on us early. We couldn’t come back from that slow start.”Fortunately, the Nos. 2 and 3 doubles pairs of Fredrik Ask and Rod Carey and Ricardo Martin and Alexander Teppert held their own, clinching the doubles point for the Badgers and kicking Sunday off to a good start.The Badgers’ good fortunes continued, as they had just one loss in singles play. No. 3 Petr Satral, who did not play in a doubles match, fell to Bader, 6-2, 6-2.After that, Wisconsin couldn’t be stopped. Ask, Carey and Michalicka sealed the win for the Badgers as they grabbed the remaining points needed for a victory. Bertha and Martin were the last matches to finish up, both ending on tie break points. Martin split sets and then dominated 10-6 in a super tiebreaker to secure the fifth Badger point. Both of Bertha’s sets were close, as he won the first 6-4 and the second went to a tiebreaker, where he defeated Jason Lee 7-3. “The doubles loss added some extra motivation for both me and Marek to go out there and win in singles,” Bertha said.Head coach Greg Van Emburgh was pleased with his team’s ability to bounce back from a tough loss Friday and finish up its last home weekend strong.“We responded really well and the guys fought today even though we were down in a couple singles matches,” Van Emburgh said. “They fought back and made a lot of balls. I think that shows their commitment to their games and what they are trying to achieve this season.”The downward spiral began with all three doubles teams losing. First to fall was the pair of Martin and Satral. The Buckeyes’ aggressive net play and strong serve returns resulted in the first Ohio State win of the day. Martin and Satral lost 8-1, holding serve only once late in the match.No. 1 doubles partners Bertha and Michalicka followed shortly thereafter, and the duo was able to stay in the matchup until 4-5. However, they didn’t win a game after that, losing 8-4 to Peter Kobelt and Matt Allare.The freshman pair of Carey and Ask was able to endure the longest, as their match went to a tiebreak. However, Ohio State gained the doubles point when Balazs Novak and Blaz Rola took down Ask and Carey, 8-7.Singles play ended almost as quickly as it had started for some Badgers. Martin was nearly swept in the No. 4 singles position, as he was defeated, 6-0, 6-1, by Novak. Satral was unable to hold his own in the No. 3 spot against Allare and lost, 6-2, 6-4, giving Ohio State three out of the four points it needed to seal yet another conference win. Bertha tallied the Badger loss that gave the Buckeyes the final point they needed for the win. Bertha had his usual strong service game, but he struggled with his backhand ground strokes and fell, 6-4, 7-6, to Rola.Ohio State’s Chase Buchanan spoiled Michalicka’s spotless Big Ten singles record, defeating him 7-5, 6-1. In the first set, things were going well for the senior, as he jumped out to a 4-1 lead. However, Michalicka let Buchanan back in and eventually won at 5-7. “He got mad, which helped me to break his serve,” Michalicka said. “Then I held 4-1. I was up, I had it right there, I just couldn’t do it.”Michalicka was unable to shake the disappointment of that first set loss and was handily defeated 6-1 in the quick second set.“It’s always like that,” Michalicka said. “You shouldn’t let it bother you. I just wasn’t that good at fighting through it today.”last_img read more