Q&A: Sasha Digiulian

first_imgSasha Digiulian climbs in the Red River Gorge during her record-breaking week. Photo: Magnus MidtboProfessional climber and Virginia native Sasha Digiulian has already had one hell of a year. In March, she spent a week establishing first female ascents of the hardest routes in the Red River Gorge, becoming the first American female to onsight a 5.14 route in the process. A couple of weeks later, she won the USA Sport Climbing Nationals in Boulder. This all comes after winning her fourth straight youth Pan Am Climbing Championship last December. Digiulian is pushing the limits of climbing and is arguably the strongest female climber in the country, if not the world. And she’s just graduated from high school. BRO talked with the 18-year-old as she finished up high school and made plans for a big summer and fall.Your recent trip to the Red was a breakthrough for you, and women climbers in general. What was different about that trip?SD: I spent spring break in the Red. I hadn’t climbed outside since August, so I’d just been training in the gym at home. I was so excited to be climbing outside that I wasn’t going to let the numbers limit me. Sometimes, you go on a climbing trip and you automatically look for routes in your comfort zone. I’d never been on a 5.14c before, but I decided I was going to put on my shoes and just climb it. I knew I only had a little time because I was on spring break, so I just went for it. Plus, the Red fits my style. The climbing there is fitness oriented without any big reaches. I’m 5’2,” so having to extend for a hold can be difficult.Was it a dream come true ticking off that 5.14c (Southern Smoke)?SD: When I was 10, I told myself if I could ever climb a 5.14A, I’d be out of this world happy. I thought that was the ultimate. I don’t know what to expect now. It sounds cheesy but if you believe it, you can do it. Lately, at the gym training, I’ll be tired but able to dig deeper. I think about what I’m training for, and I find the strength somehow. When you can link that mental aspect with the physical, you can really excel.How important is the mental game in climbing?SD: Climbing is so mental. There is only so much you can improve physically. But if you can tap into the mental side of the sport, you can do anything. There are so many individual moves in a route, so many distinctive techniques you have to perform. If you can wrap your head around what you have to do, and mentally picture yourself on the wall performing the moves, it’s amazing what you can accomplish. That side of the sport is almost as integral as the physical. 1 2last_img read more

Syracuse avenges CHA title game loss in 7-1 blowout of RIT

first_img Published on October 21, 2015 at 11:47 pm Contact Tomer: [email protected] | @tomer_langer Facebook Twitter Google+ A tripping penalty by Rochester Institute of Technology’s Lauren Carroll 7:04 into the first period gave Syracuse its first power play of the game. The Orange was patiently passing the puck back and forth, trying to find the best angle to score. With two seconds left on the man advantage, sophomore center Stephanie Grossi scored, giving SU a 1-0 lead.Sophomore wing Alysha Burriss scored just one minute and eight seconds later, opening the flood gates to an eventual blowout.Syracuse (3-3-0, 1-0 College Hockey America) dismantled RIT (1-4-0, 0-1), 7-1, on Wednesday night at the Tennity Ice Pavilion in the first conference game of the year. It’s the first time that Syracuse has scored at least seven goals since January 2013, when it scored eight against Lindenwood.This game served as a revenge game of sorts for the Orange. RIT defeated SU in last March’s CHA Championship game, which ended the team’s season and prevented Syracuse from competing in the NCAA tournament.“Right after that game, I think all the returners were focusing on this game,” said senior wing Melissa Piacentini, who had four assists on the night. “…We kind of had that in the back of our mind that they took something away from us last year.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textGrossi, who recorded her first career hat trick in the game, came away with the highlight of the night. Just 10 seconds into the second period, she found herself one-on-one with the defender. A nifty double in-and-out move deked the defender – and the goalie – and she fired puck into the net to give SU a 3-0 lead.Senior captain Nicole Ferrara got in on the action three minutes later. Skating down the left side of the ice on a one-on-one with the goalie, she backhanded the puck toward the top shelf. The puck snuck past the goalie, smacked off the left crossbar and in.“We were very opportunistic,” said head coach Paul Flanagan. “…I just thought we were moving the puck well, we were springing well and we kind of exploited their defensemen.”Grossi scored her third and final goal while Syracuse was shorthanded with 5:27 left in the second period . Grossi’s five points tied the single-game program record for most points in a game.With 30 seconds left in the second period, RIT managed to score a goal, cutting the Syracuse lead to 5-1 right before the intermission.But an RIT penalty gave Syracuse a power play and one minute and 29 seconds later, Nicole Renault rifled a shot from just in front of the blue line to give Syracuse a 6-1 lead. Three minutes later Emily Costales found a loose puck and poked into the back of the net, giving Syracuse the 7-1 lead that would eventually be the final score.RIT Head Coach Scott McDonald told his team before the game that Syracuse was “a hungry team,” who was looking to make a statement after last year’s loss.“This is why we voted them number one in the league. They went out and showed it,” McDonald said. “7-1 is proving a point. “After the seventh goal was scored, the Syracuse players on the bench were still banging on the boards, yelling and congratulating their teammates.The win gave SU a chance to empty its bench in the third period, giving the third- and fourth-line players significant ice time with a lengthy road stretch up next.“Sometimes it’s feast or famine,” Flanagan said. “And tonight it was feast.” Commentslast_img read more