A Page -- Dec. 1, 2011 -- AM Edition

Three Mount Union football Student/Athletes named Academic All OAC

Mount Union seniors Brett Ekkens (Kentwood, Mich./East Kentwood) and Alex Ferrara (Independence/Walsh Jesuit) and junior Nick Driskill (Wabash, Ind./Southwood) were each named Academic All-Ohio Athletic Conference for a second straight year by the conference's 10 faculty athletics representatives.

L to R -- Ekkens, Driskill, Ferrara

The three selections by one school tie for the most in the conference this year.

Ekkens is an Education major with a 3.65 gpa that has started 25 straight games on the offensive line that is a two-time All-OAC selection that has also has been an All-North Region and Academic All-OAC selection. He is also part of the Raider Buddy program that has football players metoring youth at local elementary schools.

Ferrara, a Business major with a 3.77 gpa, and Driskill, a Biology major with a 3.699 gpa are two leaders of the nation's No. 1 ranked defense.

Note: This story could also be found at S/A-Cleveland's national electronic paper, S/A-Jesuit:


And By Clicking on the Dec. 1 A Page

Ferrara is a three-time All-OAC and All-North Region pick that was also named Academic All-OAC and Academic All-American a year ago. Off the field, he did a mission trip to El Salvador and was part of Trick or Treat with Raiders project.  He is also a finalist for the Gagliardi Trophy given to the top all-around student-athlete and you can vote for him at http://www.d3football.com 

Driskill is the team's top tackler and won the OAC's Lee Tressel Award given to the top defensive back in the conference this season.  He is a two-time All-OAC and Academic All-OAC selection and is involved in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and a member of the Mount Union Student Athlete Advisory Committee.

To qualify, a Student/Athlete must have maintained a 3.25 GPA, be a sophomore academically and is inat least his second year of participation. He must also have been a starter or key reserve who has made asignificant athletic impact. The recipients are voted on by the faculty athletic representatives.

Lake Erie signs two for volleyball for next fall

PAINESVILLE, OHIO – Lake Erie College Volleyball Head Coach Brian Coughlin has signed two high school seniors to National Letters of Intent to join the team in the 2012 season.  Outside hitter Hannah Gregory out ofJohn Glenn High School and defensive specialist Mallory Gustincic out of Medina High School are the two latest additions to the Storm.  


Gustincic, a Medina, Ohio native, is a Northeast Ohio All-Conference selection and All-Medina County selection.  Gustincic was selected her team MVP and given the captains award while helping her team make the final 16 in the Ohio state tournament.  This season, she was tabbed honorable mention All-Ohio.  Gustincic currently holds the Medina record for assists in a season.  At Lake Erie, she plans to major in psychology with a minor in criminal justice.


"Mallory is a tremendous athlete and competitor," said Coughlin.  "She has the drive it take s to compete in our conference.  She'll have an immediate impact on the team."  

Gregory, a Cambridge, Ohio native, was a three-year starter at John Glenn. Gregory earned both All-Muskingum Valley League and All-District honors her junior and senior season.  This past season, she was honored as her team's Defensive Player of the Year… Gregory also played basketball and softball in high school.  She plans on majoring in special education.

"Hannah has great athleticism and strength," said Coughlin. " She's going to give us depth in a few positions as well as compete right away for court time.  She is really going to help us get stronger in the conference."

This is the first early signing period with Lake Erie for Coughlin, who joined the Storm in January.

Rachel Tecca's double-double leads Akron past Cleveland State

CLEVELAND (THEATRE DISTRICT)– With its third consecutive win, The University of Akron women's basketball team defeated Cleveland State 84-74 at the Wolstein Center on Wednesday night. 

The Zips (4-3) were led by junior forward Rachel Tecca with game-highs of 26 points and 10 rebounds, her second double-double of the season. Senior Jasmine Mushington and sophomore Hanna Luburgh notched career-highs with 18 points and 14 points, respectively.

Former Hoban Standout Rachel Tecca

With an impressive performance, the Zips shot 56.4 percent for the game on 31-for-55 from the field, including 60.7 percent in the second half. They also were solid at the line, making 17-of-20 free throws. Sophomore Sina King added 10 points, and classmate Kacie Cassell dished out eight assists. Cleveland State (2-4) shot just 39.7 percent on the night, including 33.3 percent in the first half.

The scoring started out slow for both sides, but a 7-0 run by the Zips put Akron ahead 12-4 with 13:18 remaining in the first half. After a Viking timeout, CSU ended the run with a free throw, but Akron kept up the pressure and pushed its lead to 17-7 midway through the period.

Just minutes later, Cleveland State simply could not stop the Zips, who went off for13 more points and took a commanding 27-12 lead with just over eight minutes until halftime. The Vikings picked up their offense in the closing minutes, but Akron still held a 34-19 lead with 3:54 on the clock. UA's offense sputtered, however, allowing Cleveland State to close the gap to 10 points at the half, with Akron up 38-28.

Mushington led the way for the Zips in the opening half with a game-high 12 points, followed by Tecca with eight. Akron, up by as many as 17 in the period, shot 51.9 percent from the field to CSU's 33.3 percent, but the Vikings dominated the glass with 11 offensive rebounds to UA's three. The points in the paint was dead even at 18 apiece, and the Zips managed to convert 12 CSU turnovers into 15 points.

Baldwin-Wallace Women’s Basketball Team 

Defeats Carnegie Mellon (Pa.), 50-47.

PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA  – Freshman guard Audrey Smolik (Strongsville) scored a career-high 16 points and grabbed a career-best four rebounds as theBaldwin-Wallace College women’s basketball team defeated Carnegie Mellon (Pa.) University, 50-47, tonight (Wednesday, November  30, 2011) in the Skibo Gymnasium. Smolik has led the team in scoring the last two games.

With the win, the Yellow Jackets won their second straight game improved to 4-1 on the season and the Tartans fall to 2-4.

In addition to Smolik for B-W, junior forward Nancy Coulter (Washington Court House/ Miami Trace) scored a season-best 13 points and a career and game-high 10 rebounds and sophomore guard Jessica Lairson (Louisville) added eight points. Carnegie Mellon was led by Emily Peel with a game-high 20 points.  Gabrielle West contributed 11 points and Jacquie Shaw added nine.

After two minutes of scoreless action,  the Tartans opened up the scoring on a layup by Peel at the 17:55 mark.  The Yellow Jackets would respond a minute later (2-1) when Coulter split a pair of free throws at the 16:20 mark.

After the Coulter free throw, Carnegie Mellon would go on a 6-0 run to extend its lead to a first half-tying seven points (8-1) at the 14:53 mark on a layup by Shaw.

B-W would outscore the Tartans 13-7 over the next eight minutes to cut the lead down to one point (15-14) on a layup by Coulter that was assisted by senior forward Catherine Spisak (Sandusky/St. Mary’s Central Catholic) at the 6:53 mark. The Tartans would  go on an 8-2 run to extend their lead to a first-half tying seven points (23-16) at the 3:24 mark capped off by a three pointer by West.

The Yellow Jackets would use a 7-0 run to tie the game (23-23) on a lay up by Coulter with 1:01 remaining in the opening period.  Carnegie Mellon would take a two-point advantage into the intermission (25-23) as West hit a pair of free throws.

B-W would open up the second half on an 8-2 run to take its first lead of the game (32-27) at the 14:11 mark as Smolik scored six of the points all coming on three-pointers.

The Tartans would use a 5-0 run to tie the game (32-32) on a jumper by Peel at 11:33.  The game would remain tied until Yellow Jacket freshman forward Jenna Andreas (Pickerington/ North) nailed her first career three-pointer and first career  points to regain the lead (35-32) at 8:55.

The game would be tied on four more occasions with the last coming at 3:30 on layup by Carnegie Mellon’s West.  The Tartans would get a close as one point (48-47) on jumper by Shaw with 49 seconds remaining.  B-W would seal the game on a jumper by Smolik with 23 seconds to play.

The Yellow Jackets open Ohio Athletic Conference action this Saturday, December 3 when they will travel to Marietta to take on the Pioneers of Marietta College in the Ban Johnson Arena at 3:00 p.m.  The next home game is on Wednesday, December 7 when B-W will host Heidelberg University in an OAC game in the Ursprung Gymnasium inside the Lou Higgins Center at 7:30 p.m.

Mike Hallett Named OhioCollegeFootball.com 

Division III Coach of the Year

TIFFIN, Ohio-Heidelberg University fifth-year head football coach Mike
Hallett was named OhioCollegeFootball.com Division III Coach of the Year,
announced today by GameDay Management, Inc.  The honor comes a week
following Hallett's selection by his peers as the Ohio Athletic Conference
coach of the year.

The OhioCollegeFootball.com Coach of the Year is awarded annually to the top
head coaches from Ohio in all divisions, NCAA I, II and III.  Hallett will
be honored at a banquet on Saturday, April 13, 2012 at the Crowne Plaza
 in Columbus on the eve of the Ohio Army National Guard Senior Bowl III
at Crew Stadium.

Hallett, who took over a program that went 15-85 in the 10 years prior to
his arrival, including a 1-39 stretch from 2003-06, led the Berg to an 8-2
record in 2011-its best mark since 1993-and a tie for second place in the
league standings.  The Student Princes' 7-2 OAC record matched that of the
1993 team as well.

Hallett's recruiting class of 2008-his second to go through four years in
the program-posted a four-year mark of 21-19, besting his 2007 class by four

In 2011, the Student Princes ranked among the top three in the OAC in 11
statistical categories and led the league in five areas, including rushing
offense, sacks allowed and kickoff returns.

Hallett, who was also named OAC coach of the year in 2007, is 25-25 in five
seasons at Heidelberg and 40-40 in eight seasons as a head coach.

Six Baldwin-Wallace College Football Student/

Athletes Selected to 2011 Academic All-OAC 


BEREA, OHIO --  Five Baldwin-Wallace College football standout Student/Athletes have been named to the 2011 Academic All-Ohio Athletic Conference squad announced today (Wednesday, November 30, 2011).

Senior cornerback Matt Bowen (Tiffin/Columbian), junior quarterback Ryan O’Rourke (Avon) and junior offensive lineman Clayton Wolf (Parma Heights/Padua Franciscan) were selected to the Academic All-OAC team and senior linebacker Matt Higginbotham (Hartville/Uniontown Lake), junior safety Tom Goebel (Parma/Padua Franciscan) and junior linebacker Nick Milano (North Royalton/Padua Franciscan) were all tabbed as honorable mention.
O'Rourke, Milano Wolf

Bowen, an accounting and finance double major who carries a 3.69 grade point average, is earning his second straight Academic All-OAC accolade.  He is a member of the Alpha Lambda Delta and Chi Alpha Sigma Honor societies and Dean’s List. Bowen has been named as a first-team Capital One Academic All-District IV student-athlete for the past two years. This season, he appeared and started in all 10 games and recorded 35 tackles, including one and half for a loss, and tied for the team lead in interceptions with four. For his career, Bowen has appeared in 30 games and has recorded 108 tackles, including six and half for loss, one quarterback sack, 29 pass breaks and six interceptions, including two that were returned for touchdowns. In addition, he been tabbed as an honorable mention All-OAC and earned OAC Defensive Player of the Week on one occasion.
Bowen, Higgnebotham,  Goebel

O’Rourke, who carries a 3.65 grade point average in education, is earning his first Academic All-OAC honor.   He is a member of the Chi Alpha Sigma Honor Society, Dean’s List and was a Capital One Academic All-District IV selection. O’Rourke has been the starting quarterback for the past two seasons and served  as one of four team captains this season.  This season, he completed 129-of-221 passes for 1,611 yards with 12 touchdowns and eight interceptions. O’Rourke also has rushed for 117 yards and one touchdown. For his career, he has completed 248-of-434 passes for 57.1 percent for 3,124 yards with 28 touchdowns. O’Rourke has been twice selected as the OAC Offensive Player-of-the-Week.

Wolf, an accounting and economics double major who carries a 3.67 grade point average, is earning his first Academic All-OAC accolade. He is a member of the Dean’s List and is a Jacket Scholar.  This season, Wolf played in all 10 games and was part of the offensive line that helped to average 196.8 rushing yards per game and allowed just 17 sacks.   For his career, he has played in 15 games.

Higginbotham, who carries a 3.42 grade point average in exercise science, is earning his first Academic All-OAC honor.  He is a member of the Dean’s list.  Higginbotham, who had his best season as a collegian in 2011, appeared in all 10 games and recorded 47 tackles, including three for loss, had one sack, forced one fumble and had one quarterback hurry.   For his career, he tallied 71 tackles, including three and half for loss, one sack and forced one fumble.  In addition, Higginbotham has one career kick off return for 13 yards.

Goebel, a business administration who carries a 3.66 grade point average , is earning his first Academic All-OAC accolade.  He is a member of the Chi Alpha Honor Society and Dean’s List.  This season, Goebel played in nine games and recorded 12 tackles and had one pass defense.   For his career, he has appeared in 19 games and has tallied 36 tackles, including one four loss, has two interceptions and five pass defenses.

Milano, who carries a 3.72 grade point average in criminal justice major, is earning his first Academic All-OAC honor. He is a member of the Dean’s List.  Milano, who missed the 2010 season with an injury, played in all 10 games and recorded 14 tackles.  For his career, he has appeared in 11 games and has recorded 15 tackles.

Spartan Women Clip Blue Streaks on Orcutt Buzzer Beater To Win College Basketball Championship of the East Side

CLEVELAND (University Circle Area) – Junior guard Evy Iacono<http://athletics.case.edu/sports/wbkb/2011-12/bios/iacono%20evy%20lmlk> (Cincinnati, Ohio/Mount Notre Dame) totaled team-highs of 14 points and nine rebounds and freshman guard Brooke Orcutt<http://athletics.case.edu/sports/wbkb/2011-12/bios/orcutt%20brooke%20bsso> (Morrison, Colo./Dakota Ridge) hit the game-winning three-pointer at the buzzer as the Case Western Reserve University women's basketball team defeated John Carroll University, 57-54, on Wednesday evening at Horsburgh Gymnasium.

The Spartans improve to 4-3 overall and will return to action on Monday, December 5 at Heidelberg University at 7:30 p.m. in Tiffin.

Iacono was joined in double-figures by senior forward Erin Hollinger<http://athletics.case.edu/sports/wbkb/2011-12/bios/hollinger%20erin%20927u> (Chardon, Ohio/Chardon), who turned in an all-around performance of 13 points, nine rebounds, six assists and five blocks. Orcutt scored seven for the game, none bigger than the three as time expired.

The Blue Streaks (3-2) built an early five-point lead of 14-9 when Marissa Spahar hit a three-pointer at the 18:42 mark. The Spartans answered with a 6-0 run and led 15-14 as senior forward Chelsea Peck<http://athletics.case.edu/sports/wbkb/2011-12/bios/peck%20chelsea%20dkys> (Pittsburgh, Pa./Oakland Catholic) hit a layup with 9:13 left in the first half.  Case then outscored JCU 11-9 over the duration of the half and led 26-23 at the break.

In the second half, the Spartans opened on a 14-7 run and led by a game-high 10, at 40-30, when freshman forward Berit Eppard<http://athletics.case.edu/sports/wbkb/2011-12/bios/eppard%20berit%20zsrb> (Englewood, Colo./Cherry Creek) hit a free throw with 12:38 left to play. The Blue Streaks battled back and outscored Case 13-4 over the next 7:23 to pull within one, at 44-43, following a triple by Emilee Ritchie with 5:15 remaining. The Spartans picked up two free throws on their next possession by Hollinger, but JCU was once again able to answer with a Ritchie three-pointer to tie the score at 46 with 3:52 left on the clock.

Case scored the next four with buckets from junior forward Marissa Miles<http://athletics.case.edu/sports/wbkb/2011-12/bios/miles%20marissa%20q0xb> (McDonald, Pa./Fort Cherry) and Hollinger, but JCU came back with four in a row on a Spahar jumper and two free throws from Ritchie.

The Spartans got two more Iacono free throws on the next trip down the floor before JCU tied it for the final time on a Beth Switzler layup with 14 seconds left. After a timeout, Case got the ball in Iacono's hands. The junior then came off of a ball screen and dished it out to Orcutt for the winning bucket.

JCU was led by Ritchee with a game-high 18 points.

Early Shooting Woes Net Hiram College Men’s Basketball Loss Against Denison University


November 30, 2011


HIRAM, OHIO – The Hiram College men’s basketball team shot just 26.7 percent in the first half and could not erase an 18-point halftime deficit as the Terriers fell to Denison University, 68-46, tonight (Wednesday, Nov. 30) in the North Coast Athletic Conference opener for both teams at Price Gymnasium. [Game Stats]


With the loss, the Terriers are now 2-2 overall and 0-1 in the NCAC. The Big Red improve to 3-3 overall and 1-0 NCAC.


Denison led right from the opening tip and never looked back as Hiram did not record its first bucket of the game until the 15:48 minute mark on a layup by junior guard Justin Wisniewski (Macedonia/Nordonia). But the Big Red had shooting issues of their own early in the opening period as Denison boasted just a three-point lead, 6-3, following the Wisniewski basket until a 15-3 scoring run by Denison, which included a 5:28 Hiram scoring drought, allowed the Big Red to blow the game open with a score of 21-6 with 9:38 left before halftime. Another scoring run by the Big Red late in the half resulted in Denison’s largest lead of the period of 23 points, 38-15, on way to a 38-20 advantage at the intermission.


In the second half, Denison remained in control for the majority of the period. Hiram made one final run with under 10 minutes to play and cut the lead to 10 points, 56-46, on a layup by sophomore guard Louis Fatimus (Poland/Youngstown/Christian) with 6:19 left to play. The Big Red answered with a final 12-2 run to end the game keeping any posibility of a Hiram comeback at bay. Neither team recorded any points in the final minute as Denison went on to claim the 68-46 victory.


Denison shot 45.0 pecent (27-of-60) from the field as Hiram ended up shooting 35.4 percent (17-of-48) overall for the game and just 23.5 percent (four-of-17) from three-point range. The Big Red also out-rebounded Hiram, 43-25.


The Big Red had a balanced scoring attack with only one player scoring in double-figures in Larry Farmer with game-highs of 18 points on eight-of-13 shooting (61.5 percent) and 14 rebounds.


Hiram also had one player in double-digits in sophomore guard Aaron Stefanov (Stow/Stow-Munroe Falls) with 15 points on five-of-nine shooting (55.6 percent), including four-of-eight (50.0 percent) from behind the arc.


The Terriers will look to rebound from tonight’s loss when they host Case on Saturday, Dec. 3 in a non-conference game at Price Gym. The game will be part of a basketball doubleheader with the Terrier women’s team. The Hiram women will face The College of Wooster in its NCAC opener at 1 p.m., followed by the men against the Spartans at 3 p.m.