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Alumni Update - Luke Kochka (Thiel)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

GREENVILLE, Pa. – The Thiel College men's basketball team secured a hard-fought 84-80 win over the Bethany BisonKochka Thiel in a Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) contest Saturday afternoon at Beeghly Gymnasium.

Thiel was down 12 with 4:27 remaining in the first half but cut the deficit to 46-40 at the break. After a back-and-forth second half, Thiel took the lead for good, 82-79, when Luke Kochka drained a three in the corner on a Khari Bess (Waldorf, Md./Maurice J. McDonough) assist.

Kochka, a Gateway graduate, paced the Tomcat offense with a game-high 24 points. He made 9-of-14 shots overall and connected on 4-of-6 attempts from behind the three-point line.

Kochka also pulled down six rebounds. 

 

(photo courtesy of Thiel College)

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Alumni Update: Matt Baurle (Westminster)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

Matt Baurle swam to six wins, including four Westminster Natatorium records, last week to help guide the Titans to aBaurle Westminster pair of dual meet wins.

In Thursday’s 180-109 win over PAC rival Grove City, he broke his own pool record in the 100 breaststroke (58.17) and broke a 10-yearold pool record in the 200 breaststroke (2:07.23). He also swam on the winning 200 medley relay that finished with a pool-record time of 1:35.32.

In Saturday’s 174-109 win over Mount Union, Baurle swam on the 400 medley relay that broke a 14-year-old pool record with a winning time of 3:29.29.

He also won the 100 breaststroke (58.34) and the 200 breaststroke (2:09.73).

The Penn-Trafford graduate earned PAC Men’s Swimmer/Diver of the Week. 

 

(photo courtesy of Westminster College)

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Megan Ryan's East High School Basketball Notebook (Feb. 5, 2016)

Written by Megan Ryan on .

Megan Ryan has this week's East High School Basketball Notebook.

"Hempfield needed a win Jan. 29 against Albert Gallatin to clinch a playoff spot in Class AAAA Section 1.

The Spartans managed that and more.

The team netted a school-record 20 3-pointers, going 20 of 25 from beyond the arc and scoring 32 baskets total to win, 90-72. Hempfield is 5-6 in fourth place (8-13 overall).

A first-time starter led the charge. Zak Mesich had been the sixth man all season until coach Bill Swan had a "hunch" he should put Mesich in the first five. The junior guard scored a game-high 28 points, including nine 3-pointers."

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Hockey: Johns, Johnson help Latrobe crush conference-leading Armstrong

Written by Keith Barnes on .

After a couple of losses, Latrobe has rebounded well and is now within three points of first place in the Eastern Conference leading Armstrong with four games remaining in the regular season.

 

Latrobe (13-5-0) has outscored its last two opponents, 18-6, including an 11-3 victory over Armstrong that pushed the Wildcats back into conference title contention. In those two wins, Daniel Johnson has come on with five goals and eight points to key their victories.

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Hockey: Warriors’ playoff hopes hanging by thread

Written by Keith Barnes on .

It would take a miracle for Penn-Trafford to qualify for the PIHL Class AA playoffs.

 

With four games remaining in the regular season, the Warriors (6-12-0) trail Fox Chapel (9-10-0) for the fifth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot. And the schedule does not look kindly on them as they start their final stretch run with a game against second-place Latrobe (13-5-0) on Friday.

 

It hasn’t helped that Penn-Trafford has stumbled down the stretch as the Warriors are 1-4-0 in their last five with their only victory coming on Jan. 22 against Norwin. A loss to Latrobe wouldn’t be fatal, but they would need Fox Chapel to lose out and they would have to win their final three games, against Hempfield, a suddenly mortal Armstrong and a showdown in the season finale with the Foxes.

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Hockey: East Feature Athlete – Kiski Area senior Brandon Stephens

Written by Keith Barnes on .

 

Name: Brandon Stephens

School: Kiski Area

Grade: 12

Sport: Hockey

 

Background: Helped Kiski Area make the transition from junior varsity only program to Class A hockey. Leads the Cavaliers with 17 assists and has more than doubled his junior varsity scoring output from last season with 10 goals and 27 points. Has points in three of his last four games and had four goals in the team’s season-opening win against Greensburg Salem.

 

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Alumni Update - TaShan Campbell (Pittsburgh)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

PITTSBURGHThe No. 16 Pitt wrestling team (9-3, 1-1 ACC) fell to No. 3 NC State (19-0, 4-0 ACC), 28-6,Campbell Pitt in a Saturday night ACC dual at the Fitzgerald Field House.

Penn Hills graduate TeShan Campbell, ranked No. 26, escaped early in the second to take the initial lead. He secured the win after a late takedown in the third, coming out with a 3-1 decision over Nicky Hall.

 

(photo courtesy of University of Pittsburgh)

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Alumni Update - April Krivoniak (Robert Morris)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

Geneva, Ohio – Junior April Krivoniak came within a few inches of setting a new school record in the shot put as her performance waskrivoniak RMU one of the highlights for the Robert Morris University indoor track & field team as it continued its campaign in the SPIRE Midwest Indoor Track & Field Open Saturday at the SPIRE Institute.

Krivoniak, sophomore Rachel Crane and freshman Lilly Harnish all placed among the top four in an event while contributing a mark that is among the top five in school history.

Krivoniak, a Latrobe graduate, placed third in the shot put with a new career best mark of 13.93 meters. In doing so, she qualified for the ECAC Championships for the second time in two indoor campaigns and contributed the second-longest toss in program history.

Her distance from Saturday represented an improvement of more than a half-meter from her previous season best.

 

(photo courtesy of Robert Morris University)

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Wrestling: Franklin Regional phenom Spencer Lee cleared to wrestle

Written by Ken Wunderley on .

Franklin Regional junior Spencer Lee has been cleared to wrestle.

Lee, a two-time WPIAL and PIAA champion, has been sidelined for the entire season while recovering from off-season shoulder surgery.

"Spencer has been cleared to wrestle and is now practicing with the team,"  Franklin Regional coach Eric Mausser said. "I haven't decided whether he will wrestle [Wednesday] in the WPIAL Team Tournament."

Lee has been the most dominant wrestler in Pennsylvania the past two years, as he has compiled a perfect 97-0 record. He is expected to begin the season at 120 or 126. Lee is also a two-time World Champion.

Franklin Regional, the two-time defending WPIAL and PIAA team champions, is seeded No. 4 in the 20-team WPIAL Class AAA bracket. The Panthers play host to Trinity in the opening round, Wednesday at 6 p.m.

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Alumni Update - Julius Rivera (Indiana Pa.)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – IUP's Julius Rivera and Carly Petney (Gallitzin, Pa./Penn Cambria) each ran qualifying times as they competed on the first day of the Penn State National track & field meet on Friday afternoon at the Ashenfelter III indoor track.

Rivera, a Gateway graduate, running in just his second meet as a member of the Crimson Hawks, hit an NCAA Division II provisional qualifying mark in the 60 meters with a time of 6.86. The qualifying mark came in the semifinals before finishing sixth overall in the finals with a time of 6.88.

 

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Alumni Update - Nico Megaludis (Penn State)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- No. 1 Penn State (12-0, 7-0 B1G) dominated No. 10 Michigan (10-2, 5-1 B1G) in front of aMegaludis PSU sold out Rec Hall crowd on Sunday, rolling to a 35-7 victory.

The Nittany Lions won eight of ten bouts in front of a White Out crowd of over 6,500, handing Michigan its first conference loss of the year.

The dual began at 125 where senior Nico Megaludis, a Franklin Regional graduate, ranked No. 4 nationally, dominated Conor Youtsey, rolling to a 10-4 win with 1:58 in riding time.

 

(photo courtesy of Penn State University)

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Alumni Update: Emily Nelson (Pitt-Greensburg)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

BRADFORD, Pa. -  Despite holding a 37-32 lead at the half, the Pitt Greensburg women's basketball team fell on the road Saturday toNelson PGU branch campus rival Pitt-Bradford.  

Saturday would have a silver lining though with senior guard, Emily Nelson becoming the program's 11th 1000 point scorer.

Nelson, a Hempfield graduate, joins former teammates Kayla Damesand Morgan Biddle who both accomplished the feat during the 2014-15 season.  

She currently resides in 11th place all-time in the UPG record books with 1001 points, but with six regular season games and playoffs remaining, Nelson has the chance to move up the top 10 scorers.

The Bobcats sit in fifth place in the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference after the loss with an even 6-6 mark while posting an 8-11 overall record.  

The second place Panthers improve to 10-2 in conference action and 14-5 on the year.

 

(photo courtesy of Pitt-Greensburg University)

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Alumni Update - Alex Plimpton (Indiana Pa.)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

INDIANA, Pa. – The IUP men's and women's swim teams hold leads over their respective counterparts from Gannon after the first sessionPlimpton IUP of the 2016 Pidgeon Memorial Invitational on Friday night at the Pidgeon Natatorium. Both IUP teams trail Bloomsburg after the first session.

The IUP men lead Gannon 76-15 and trail the Huskies 58-33. The women hold a 59-32 advantage over Gannon and trail Bloomsburg 57-34.

The men had 11 individual Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) championship meet times and six top three performances.

Alex Plimpton, a Penn-Trafford graduate, picked up an individual win in the 500 freestyle with a time of 4:49.54.

 

(photo courtesy of Indiana Pa.)

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Wrestling: Surgery ends season for Franklin Regional's Gus Solomon

Written by Ken Wunderley on .

For the second consecutive year, an injury has sidelined Franklin Regional junior Gus Solomon.

"Gus had shoulder surgery on Monday," Franklin Regional coach Eric Mausser said. "It's a shame to see such a talented wrestler sidelined for a second straight year."

Solomon was ranked No. 1 in WPIAL Class AAA at 126 pounds with a 7-2 record. He placed fifth at the Walsh Jesuit Ironman Classic prior to the injury.

Solomon placed third in Section 1-AAA as a 120-pound freshman and first last season as a 126-pound sophomore, but did not participate in the WPIAL Tournament either year. He finished last season with a 36-3 record.

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Alumni Update - Tatiana Cloud (Clarion)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

GENEVA, Ohio– The long sprints and middle distance provided the excitement on the track while a pair of field stalwarts did what they doCloud Clarion best, as the Clarion women's track & field team enjoyed a successful day at the Midwest Indoor Track & Field Open. The event was held at the SPIRE Center in Geneva, Ohio.

Tatiana Cloud came away with the best individual placement of the day for the Golden Eagles and also contributed to an excellent finish in a relay, with Cloud taking sixth in the 600m and helping the 4x400m Relay team take fifth.  

Cloud, a Kiski Area graduate, won her heat of the 600m with a time of 1:43.92, a mark that topped a handful of runners in the top heat.  

 

(photo courtesy of Clarion University)

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Alumni Update – Alexis Rectenwald (Chatham)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

PITTSBURGH, Pa. -The Chatham University Women's Swimming and Diving team hosted their final tri-Rectenwald Chathammeet of the season yesterday, welcoming the Barons from Franciscan University and the Lions from Penn State Altoona.

The Cougars would defeat both non-conference opponents yesterday; the Cougars defeated Franciscan by a score of 173-36 and would also defeat Penn State Altoona 169-42.

Senior Alexis Rectenwald, a Penn Hills graduate, would take the gold in both the 1 meter diving event (258.45 total points) and the 3 meter diving event (279.45 total points).

 

(photo courtesy of Chatham University)

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Boys Basketball: Latrobe seeking outright section title

Written by Keith Barnes on .

After suffering its first loss of the season last week against Norwin, Latrobe (18-1, 9-1) rebounded with a non-section blowout victory over Hollidaysburg.

Now, though, the Wildcats have to win at least one more game, either tonight against Kiski Area or Friday at Hempfield, to clinch a share of the Section 1-AAAA title. Wins in both would give them the outright championship and, likely, one of the top four seeds when the WPIAL pairings are announced Feb. 9.

In that win over Hollidaysburg, senior guard Sean Graytok joined Austin Butler in the school's 1,000-point club. Both players eclipsed the milestone within two games of each other as Butler did it in a win against Albert Gallatin on Jan. 21.