The NYU Athletes You Should Know: Fall EditionPosted on August 25, 2013 | by Francisco Navas and Chris Marcotrigiano
Men’s Soccer: Tino Kardassis
With the exodus of key seniors like powerhouse, goal-scoring forwards Kyle Green and Paolo Luciano, who contributed to about half of the team’s goals last season, the sights have turned to the leadership in the Violets backline. Tino Kardassis, the team’s 6-foot center back, has now taken the reins. Kardassis helped the men keep a clean sheet in seven matches, six of which were in last season’s record-breaking 9-0 start. The men only gave up 19 goals in 21 matches played. Kardassis will lead one of the stronger defenses NYU has seen and help fill the void left in the team’s backbone.
Women’s Volleyball: Alexandria Mao
The numbers say it all for senior outside hitter Alexandria Mao. As she captained the lady Violets to their second straight 20-win season, Mao also led the team in kills (436), kills per set (3.79), points (533.5), points per set (4.26) and attack attempts (1,301). She was also second in digs (336) and service aces (48). In University Athletic Association play, she finished second among all players in kills per set (3.88). These stats earned her a top accolade when she was selected to the All-UAA second team. With her final season starting Saturday, Aug. 30, look for her to spike her statistics again.
Wrestling: Brandon Jones
The now four-time UAA Athlete of the Week Brandon Jones made his NYU wrestling debut in the 133-pound class last year as a sophomore when he transferred from Iowa State University. Jones, who finished with a 17-2 record (.895), led the team with his win percentage. At the Will Abele Invitational, he fought outside of his weight class, competing in the 144-pound class instead, where he went on to win the invitational. Jones shone at the NCAA Division III East National Championship where he qualified for nationals and reached the semifinals of the 133-pound class, becoming NYU’s first individual All-American and All-Association since 2010.
Women’s Soccer: Melissa Menta
Attacker Melissa Menta burst onto the scene last season as a freshman out of Somers, N.Y. After starting all four years in high school and becoming team captain her senior year, she lived up to her lofty expectations in her first season at NYU. In only 13 games played, Menta led the team in goals (12) and assists (9). Menta also led the team in efficiency — she found the back of the net 27 percent of the time she had shots on frame. She has become a potent threat on the front line for the Violets and should prove to be a go-to scorer once again this season along with junior forward Cami Crawford.
Women’s Basketball: Megan Dawe
Forward Megan Dawe was another freshman standout for NYU Athletics last year. She led the squad in scoring with an impressive 12.8 points per game. She made 52 percent of her shots (121-232) and also led the team among players with more than 100 attempts. Dawe crashed the boards as she registered 6.5 rebounds per game, proving to be an invaluable asset on the front court. The 6-foot forward must hone her free throw shooting as she continues to draw contact inside, especially because of her proven shooting prowess. Things are looking up for the rising sophomore, and for NYU women’s basketball.