July 8, 2008
QUEENS, N.Y. -
I hope you are all enjoying your summer. Here at St. John's, we are trying to balance getting some time to rest and recharge while still remaining busy preparing for the upcoming year.
This 2007-08 academic and athletic year had many highlights both on and off the field. Our baseball team set a new school record for wins in a season (42) and tied the school record for conference wins (20), while earning its second-straight BIG EAST regular season title, reaching the 40-win plateau for a school record fourth-straight season, and making a NCAA Regional appearance. Led by senior Monika Golebiewski, a gold medalist and first team All-American in the foil, the Red Storm men's and women's fencing teams placed in the top 5 in the nation for the 11th-straight year at the NCAA Championships. Keyed by All-American and BIG EAST Player of the Year Hui Ping Huang, the Red Storm volleyball team eclipsed virtually every record from its most successful season a year ago, setting the bar even higher by taking the 2007 conference regular season and tournament crowns. Our women's basketball team made a run to the quarterfinals in the Postseason WNIT. Track & Field freshman Priscilla Frederick had a standout rookie season, winning both the indoor and outdoor Metropolitan high jump titles before going on to compete in the NCAA National Finals in Oregon, where she placed in the top-12 and earned All-Region accolades. Senior sprinter Maxcine Foster capped off her successful racing career earning an Outdoor BIG EAST title in the 400-meter dash, St. John's third in four years.
In the classroom, 59 percent of our student-athletes earned grade point averages of 3.0 or higher during the 2007-08 academic year and 10 of our 17 teams topped the 3.0 plateau. Our average student-athlete GPA was a 3.1 during the year, and a combined 31 student-athletes achieved academic perfection with a 4.0 in either the fall or spring semester. For the second-straight year, baseball player Jeff Grantham and men's soccer player Jeff Stepan were named ESPN The Magazine First Team Academic All-Americans. This fall our cross country, volleyball and women's soccer teams were each honored by their respective coaching organizations for academic achievement, and our men's basketball squad posted its highest team GPA in more than a decade.
St. John's student-athletes continue to be extremely active members of the community - on campus, in the greater New York City area, and beyond. Red Storm student-athletes contributed more than 1,500 community outreach hours to date during the 2007-08 academic year.
Certainly one of the major highlights of the year was our 100th Anniversary of Basketball Celebration. The year-long celebration of St. John's basketball centennial culminated on June 10 in Manhattan. More than 300 former players, coaches, fans, alumni and friends packed the New York Athletic Club at Central Park South to honor a century of hardwood success, and pay homage to St. John's 50-man All-Century team. Our highly-anticipated 100 Years of Basketball coffee table books are in, and are currently being shipped to all who have ordered them. They are outstanding and those interested in ordering one should visit the publications store on RedStormSports.com.
This summer we have a number of exciting construction projects in progress. The front of Carnesecca Arena is being converted into a green pedestrian area, which will greatly enhance the look of our on-campus home and will complement the first phase of the major interior renovation of the arena. Currently, the lobby of the arena is being renovated to provide a more spacious and contemporary entrance to the building. The new space will celebrate Coach Carnesecca's legacy of success, the tradition of our basketball programs and the accomplishments of the entire St. John's Athletics program throughout history. Fans can definitely look forward to the arena's new playing surface and upgraded lower seating area, which are being put into place this summer and will be ready for the 2008-09 season.
Jack Kaiser Stadium, the home of St. John's baseball, will also see enhancements this summer, as we honor Coach Kaiser with a grand entrance and new scoreboard in the stadium named in his honor.
We hope your summer is going well and we look forward to you visiting the campus and supporting our teams in the near future.
Lets go Red Storm!
Director of Athletics