Chronicle Athletes of the Week: Vanessa Miranda & Chris Wakefield

Zach Smart

Sport: Lacrosse
Class: Senior
Hometown: Bay Shore, N.Y.
Major: Finance

Miranda has set the tone defensively for a young Bobcat team that has won five of their last six games, as they sit in second place behind Monmouth, which is undefeated in NEC action this season.

Miranda has been the essential component of the defense, putting opposing teams’ top scorers on lock against the Bobcats. Her efforts now have the Bobcats off to their best record (6-5 overall, 5-1 NEC) in the history of the program.

Behind Miranda, QU allows fewest goals per game of any team in the conference this season. The Long Island native was named Quinnipiac Athlete of the Month back on April 5, marking the first time in school history that a defender has garnered the honor.

Miranda has forced more turnovers than any player in Quinnipiac history – she holds both the single season and career record for caused turnovers.

The Bobcats have a date with conference foe Long Island at Brooklyn on Thursday. A win would give them an automatic postseason berth. Miranda will have the task of holding attacker Amy Rizzo (33 goals, 15 assists) in check throughout the game.

Sport: Baseball
Class: Senior
Hometown: Ronkonkoma, N.Y.
Major: Criminal Justice

Wakefield, one year after being named to the All-NEC first team, has the potential to emerge into a real ace this season.

His performance in game one of the Sacred Heart doubleheader Sunday (which the Bobcats split) was pretty indicative of that.

Wakefield tossed his second consecutive complete game win, helping the Bobcats to a 6-1 victory over their in-state rivals at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport. The former Connetquot High stud scattered six hits while striking out eight to improve to 2-1 on the season.

Wakefield has pitched 19.1 innings this year, fanning 16 batters while letting up just 16 hits.

They are the numbers one would expect out of the 6-foot-1 right-hander who finished third on the squad with a 3.65 ERA for the 2005 campaign. He threw two shutouts and finished first on the team with 56 Ks.

Wakefield got his name out last season, during a pivotal NEC tournament win over Sacred Heart. He twirled a complete-game one-hitter en route to a 7-0 shutout of the Pioneers, a game which shot up his stock.

Wakefield will likely explore his pro stock while leading the defending NEC champions this year.