Mexicano powers Illini to season-opening wins

MIAMI – Coach Terri Sullivan's Illinois softball squad had a good start to its season Friday at the Diamond Fun & Sun Classic, topping No. 20 Louisville6-2 and Florida International 11-5.

In the Illini's season opener against the Cardinals, shortstop Angelena Mexicano went 3 for 4 with three runs and left fielder Makenzie Smith was 2 for 4 with three RBI. Reliever Ashley Wright allowed no runs on three hits in 4< 1/3> innings to earn the victory.

Illini complete sweep, gain dose of confidence

URBANA – A slow start didn't prevent Illinois from completing a weekend men's tennis sweep.

Bouncing back after losing the doubles point, the seventh-ranked Illini rallied past No. 41 Tennessee 4-3 on Saturday night at Atkins Tennis Center.

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Zollner, Whittaker hitting new heights

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – The Illinois men's track and field team earned three titles and 17 top-five finishes Saturday at the Blue Raider Invitational, but coach Wayne Angel said his squad still can improve.

"It was a solid performance for us today, although we've got a lot of work to do," Angel said. "We didn't show the amount of intensity that I was hoping for."

Johnson's wrestlers turn back Wildcats

CHAMPAIGN –Illinois wrestling coach Mark Johnson said he wants his 16th-ranked squad to get tougher as the season progresses.

If Friday night's 21-13 victory against No. 8 Northwestern is any indication, the Illini are well on their way.

Pomeroy, Yamauchi top the charts

CHAMPAIGN – Cara Pomeroy and Tyler Yamauchi were the top scorers Friday night at the annual Mixed Pairs Exhibition at HuffHall. The twosome finished with a score of 29.800, just ahead of the team of Michael Boyer, Kim Kruk and Nick Stango (29.700).

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Brown gets honorable mention

CHAMPAIGN – Illinois junior middle blocker Vicki Brown was selected to the All-Big Ten volleyball honorable mention list Tuesday.

Brown led the Illini with a .324 attack percentage and was second on the team with 352 kills. She was named tournament MVPat the State Farm Illini Classic and Marquette Kickoff Tournament. She also was named to the all-tournament team at the North Carolina Volleyball Classic.

Sprinter selects Angel's team

CHAMPAIGN – Sprinter Marcus Duncan of Port of Spain, Trinidad, highlights the latest recruiting class for Illinois men's track and field coach Wayne Angel.

Duncan was the 2006 national junior college champion in the 100 and 200 meters.

Starkell adds two

CHAMPAIGN – Illinois women's gymnastics coach Bob Starkell signed two recruits Wednesday: Allison Buckley of Schaumburg and Melissa Fernandez of Eudora, Kan.

"We are extremely excited about the two young ladies that will be joining our Illini family. They both carry qualities and strengths that will help our program reach our goals both nationally and in the Big Ten Conference," Starkell said.