Hartwick College water polo player Kamila Zakirova will play for the Kazakhstan National Team in the upcoming Asian Aquatics Championships in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Kazakhstan will open the ninth annual round-robin championships Monday against Hong Kong and follow with games against Sri Lanka (Tuesday), Singapore (Thursday), India (Nov. 23), Uzbekistan (Nov. 24), and China (Nov. 25).
The championships serve as the qualification tournament for the 2013 FINA World Championships, which will be held in July in Barcelona, Spain. The team with the best record after round-robin play at the Hamdan Bin Mohammed Sports Complex will earn the Asian Aquatics Championships title.
Zakirova represented Kazakhstan at the 2009 junior and 2011 senior world championships. She also participated in the 2012 Asian Games.
Zakirova finished her 2012 season at Hartwick as the college’s outstanding female freshman athlete, the CWPA Western Division Rookie of the Year and a Second Team CWPA Western Division selection.
Also a CWPA Eastern Championships Second Team pick, Zakirova ranked second at Hartwick last season in assists (43), steals (58) and points (tie, 102), and finished third in goals (59).
Delhi 57, F-M 56
Ismael Pierre and Quayshaun Mitchell scored 15 points apiece to lead undefeated SUNY Delhi to a Mountain Valley Conference victory on the road Thursday.
Lateek Anderson made two free throws with 6 seconds left to give the Broncos a 57-53 lead. Fulton-Montgomery converted a quick three-point play, but time expired.
Anderson redeemed himself after missing two foul shots with about 30 seconds left and Delhi ahead, 55-50. The Raiders followed with a three-pointer, then fouled Anderson on the ensuing possession.
The Broncos, who are ranked second among NJCAA Division III teams, rallied from a 16-point halftime deficit to improve to 6-0 overall and 2-0 in the MVC.
Pierre also grabbed 11 rebounds for Delhi, which received 13 points and five assists from sophomore Stefan Bock.
Delhi hosts Onondaga Community College at 4 p.m. Saturday.
Hartwick tops E8 poll
Hartwick will start its second straight men’s basketball season as the favorite to win the Empire 8 crown.
The Hawks received five first-place votes and 61 points in the conference’s preseason poll, which was released Thursday. Hartwick, which is coached by Todd McGuinness, edged Ithaca for the top spot as the Bombers earned four first-place votes and 59 points.
Hartwick is coming off a school-record-tying 23-win season that included a record 12 conference victories en route to the E8’s regular-season title and a second straight appearance in the NCAA Division III Tournament.
Ithaca earned the automatic NCAA qualifier last season after knocking out the top-seeded Hawks in the E8 Tournament semifinals and Nazareth in the conference championship game.
Stevens Institute of Technology placed third in the poll with 48 points, followed by Nazareth (44), St. John Fisher (32), Utica (27), Alfred University (25), Elmira (19) and newcomer Houghton College (9).
Preseason All-American Jared Suderley, the Empire 8 Player of the Year last season, will lead the Hawks into their season opener at 7 p.m. today against Purchase College in the two-day Regis Tip-Off Tournament in Weston, Mass.
Suderley finished second in E8 scoring last season with 17.4 points per game. He also placed second in the E8 in free-throw percentage (.863) and field-goal percentage (.528), and was seventh in rebounds per game (8.1).
Hartwick’s roster also includes Laurens graduate Aaron Laing, a 6-foot-5 forward who returns for his senior season.
Western Conn. 55, O-State 40
Lyteshia Price finished with game-highs of 18 points and three three-pointers, but Oneonta State lost its season opener at Western Connecticut.
Price hit 7 of 11 field-goal attempts, including a 3-for-4 effort from behind the three-point arc. She also had five rebounds and two steals for the Red Dragons, who faced a 28-22 deficit at halftime.
Sarah Longto grabbed a game-high eight rebounds for Oneonta, which received a game-best four steals from Kristin Pappalardo.
Carly Murphy paced Western Connecticut with 14 points off the bench.
O-State will open the two-day Wheaton College Tip-Off Tournament in Norton, Mass., at 4 p.m. Saturday against New Jersey City University.
F-M 75, Delhi 54
Yaya Soto scored 20 points for visiting SUNY Delhi in a Mountain Valley Conference loss to undefeated Fulton-Montgomery Community College.
Gilbertsville-Mount Upton graduates Bri Lambert and Tanya Barnes scored eight and six points, respectively, for the Broncos (3-4, 0-2). Lambert also contributed six rebounds and three assists. Barnes had five assists, four steals and six rebounds.
Takima Lucky’s 30 points paced F-M (6-0), which held a 14-point lead at halftime.
Delhi hosts Onondaga Community College at 2 p.m. Saturday.
Hawks open tonight
Reigning Empire 8 Coach of the Year Missy West returns all five starters and three other letter-winners from a Hartwick team that made its eighth NCAA tournament appearance last season.
The Hawks won 22 games last winter, including a program-best 12 conference victories en route to their first appearance in the E8 championship game.
Juniors guards Kate Purcell and Kait Veit will captain the Hawks, who start their season at 8 tonight against New Paltz in the two-day NYU Tip-Off Tournament.
Hartwick also returns its only senior, point guard Marie Davison, and sophomore guard Maria Foglia. She led the team in scoring (15.2 points per game), assists (78) and free-throw shooting (program-record 155-for-178).
Two Hawks All-Region
Hartwick seniors Kelsey Kimble and Cassie Jonaitis are two of 32 players in the North Atlantic Region recognized by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association on Thursday as members of its Longstreth/NFCA Division III All-Region Teams.
Kimble received First Team accolades while Jonaitis made the Second Team as the Hawks placed at least one player on an All-Region Team for the fifth straight season.
An All-Region pick last season, Empire 8 Conference first-teamer Kimble led the Hawks with 12 goals, seven assists and 31 points in 2012. She will compete in the NFHCA Division III Senior game at 4 p.m. Saturday at William Smith College.
Jonaitis, who made the E8’s Second Team, started every game for the Hawks and finished the season with three goals, four assists and four defensive saves.