A Page -- Dec. 6, 2011 -- PM Edition

B-W Senior Forward Catherine Spisak 

(Sandusky St. Mary's )Leaves Her Mark on the 

Women’s Basketball Program

By Emily Thomas
Student/Athlete-Cleveland Student/Writer

BEREA, OHIO – Anyone who has seen Baldwin-Wallace College women’s basketball senior captain Catherine Spisak (Sandusky/ St. Mary Central Catholic) right before a game might wonder whether she is really ready to play in a basketball game or preparing for a date.

“I always have my hair and makeup done and my nails painted black for every game,” Spisak explained. “I have a personal philosophy of ‘you look good, you play good.’”

Spisak’s philosophy has definitely proven true throughout her basketball career and it will get put to the test again on Wednesday night (December 7, 2011) when B-W hosts Ohio Athletic Conference rival Heidelberg University at 7:30 p.m. in the Rudolph Ursprung Gymnasium of the Lou Higgins Center inBerea.

During high school, Spisak earned four varsity letters. As a captain her junior year, she was second-team All-Sandusky Bay Conference and was voted Team Most Valuable Player. Serving as a second-year captain her senior year, Spisak had continued success. She was first-team All-SBC, first-team All-Northwest District and first-team All-District 6, received honorable mention All-Ohio honors and voted MVP for the second straight season.

It’s no wonder B-W women’s basketball Head Coach Cheri Harrer wanted to recruit Spisak.

“Catherine was a good athlete and played very hard,” said Harrer, who is in her 22nd season at B-W and enters Wednesday’s home game with a 437-155 career mark. “She had a decent outside game and was able to drive to the basket.”

Spisak chose to continue her basketball career at B-W because of its winning tradition. Little did Spisak know that she herself would play an instrumental role in the continued success of the program.

In her first three seasons as a Yellow Jacket, Spisak was part of the team’s 2008-2009 NCAA Division III National Tournament appearance, a second place place finish in the Ohio Athletic Conference last season and a three-year overall record of 59-24  with a .711 winning percentage.  And, Harrer, Spisak and the rest of the Yellow Jackets show no sign of slowing down this year.

“As a team, our goals are always very high,” said Harrer. “Every year we want to win the OAC regular season and OAC Tournament titles and play in the NCAA Tournament. Our goals are as high as any team can make them. Our expectations are that we are going to play harder than our opponent, play tough D [defense], rebound at both ends of the court and play together – every game.”

Spisak shares the same high expectations as her coach saying, “we want to win the national championship. We have a dedicated, talented group of girls who are willing to work hard.”

So far the Yellow Jackets are off to a good start. B-W enters Wednesday’s game with a 4-2 overall record and has 18 straight wins against the Student Princes. Individually, Spisak has played well and is averaging a team and OAC-leading 10.3 rebounds per game, including an OAC-leading 6.8 defensive rebounds per contest.

While there is no question that Spisak is a talented basketball player, she will leave behind a legacy that goes far beyond wins and losses, free throw percentages and rebounds.

As a three-year captain, Spisak is known for her leadership and takes that role to heart.

“My biggest accomplishment in my basketball career is that I have been a captain since I was a sophomore,” said Spisak. “I feel that this is the greatest honor.

“I feel proud of myself for pushing through adversity and that I have remained loyal to something I have worked so hard for,” adds Spisak. “I also feel like I have to be more of a leader than ever. I have to set the tone for practice and games. I have to make sure that whenever I say I will do something, I follow through.”

Spisak’s leadership ability has been well recognized by her coach.

“Catherine has developed tremendously as a leader,” said Harrer. “As an athlete she has found her niche in being a terrific rebounder and excellent defender. Catherine takes pride in doing all the little things that winning teams needs to do – take charges, communicate, set screens, rebound at both ends…and that role is extremely important for us.

“As a leader, she has become an excellent vocal leader,” continued Harrer. “She is a great encourager for her teammates and they really do look to her for guidance. She is one of the best leaders to ever play in our program.”

Spisak’s ability is not only acknowledged by her coach, but by her teammates as well.

Junior All-OAC forward Jessica Carpenter (North Canton/ Hoover) wants to do everything she can do make Spisak’s last season a great one.

“I think I can speak for the whole team when I say we want this season to be the best it can be, not only for each other, but for Catherine because it will be her last,” said Carpenter.  “She has put so much time and effort into this program for four years, so I hope our accomplishments and success this season will be rewarding enough for her.

“I know the friendships made and the experiences she has had will be satisfying enough for her, by why not give her what she has been working had for over the past four years -- a championship.”

Harrer echos Carpenter’s feelings. “We are extremely anxious to help Cat go out as a winner.”

Spisak returns the sentiments by Carpenter and Harrer.

“I have a great quality relationship with each of the different coaches. I could approach them with any problem and they would be more than willing to help. My teammates are my family. I have had the pleasure to make lifetime friends throughout my career here at B-W.”

Spisak will not just leave her mark on the women’s basketball program, but on the school as well.

Graduating this coming spring with a strong grade point average and two degrees, a Bachelor of Arts in Sport Management and Public Relations, Spisak proves that she can do it all.

On top of an outstanding basketball and academic career, Spisak still finds the time to be involved on campus as she is the President of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, Vice President of the Sport Management Club and a member of the Public Relations Club. All of this experience, both on and off the court, will serve her well as she takes the next steps in her life as she is currently in the process of applying to graduate school for College Student Personnel or Higher Education and Leadership programs.

“I will pursue a career in academic advising/ student affairs within intercollegiate athletics,” said Spisak. “I would eventually like to be a female administrator at an NCAA Division I institution.”
While the next steps in her life are exciting ones for Spisak, it will be the end of her basketball career.

“For the past twelve years, I have had practice or some basketball related activity going on every day,” says Spisak. “I will have a lot of extra time on my hands now.

“I will miss the structure and discipline that basketball has brought to my life,” continued Spisak. “Basketball has been the thing that has helped me to stay in shape and remain active for most of my life. I am looking forward to finding new ways to remain active, strong, and competitive.”

Spisak will miss playing basketball and her teammates.

“I will miss the family atmosphere of the team,” says Spisak. “These are the people that I have been with for up to three years. They have been with me through good times and bad times.”

Coach Harrer and Carpenter have made it clear that Spisak will leave a great legacy behind as she plays in her final season for the Yellow Jackets.

“Cat just has to be the best Cat she can be – no one else,” said Harrer.

However, it is how Spisak wants to be remembered that speaks to her true character.

“I want to be remembered as someone who was a true leader and made a positive impact in the lives of the younger girls on the team,” Spisak explained. “I want to be remembered as someone who never took plays off and always wanted what was best for the team.

“Most of all,” Spisak said, “I want to be remembered as someone who loved the game.”

Following its game against Heidelberg, B-W is back in action this Saturday, Dec. 10 when it travels to Wilmington, Ohio to play the Wilmington CollegeQuakers at 2:00 p.m. in the first game of a men’s and women’s doubleheader.

Amateur Bowling Notes


Amateur Cleveland USBC Bowling Association honor scores through 12/5/11


Format: Bowler, Hometown, Date, Bowling Center


    300 Games

Tim Lemon, Brunswick, 11/21, Freeway Lanes of Parma;

Kyle Schlitter, Olmsted Township, 11/28, Freeway Lanes of Parma;

Joel Lewis, Oakwood Village, 11/29, Roseland Lanes;

Phil Silia Jr., North Olmsted, 11/30, Buckeye Lanes;

Eric Kuchenmeister, Brook Park, 11/30, Buckeye Lanes;

Greg Barnhart, North Royalton, 11/30, Brookgate Lanes;

Gregory Jefferson, Cleveland, 12/1, Ambassador Superior;

Brian Kaliszewski, Garfield Heights, 12/2, Red Circle Lanes;

Jeff Moehring, Cleveland, 12/2, Freeway Lanes of Parma;

Jeff Brown Parma, 12/2, Buckeye Lanes;

Denis Lynch, Broadview Heights, 12/5, Red Circle Lanes;

Michael Cimperman, Parma, 12/5, Cloverleaf Lanes;



    299 Games

Jonothan Wilson, Brooklyn Heights, 11/21, Freeway Lanes of Parma;

Michael Kennison, Parma, 11/28, Freeway Lanes of Parma;

Kyle Cwiklinski, Seven Hills, 12/1, Seven Hills Lanes;

Brian Miklavic, Garfield Heights, 12/2, Red Circle Lanes;



    298 Games

Chris Leduc, Mentor, 12/3, Cloverleaf Lanes;



    800 Series

Phil Silia Jr., North Olmsted, 11/30, Buckeye Lanes (836);

Mount Union searching for another Stagg Bowl 

trip against Wesley

#2 Mount Union Purple Raiders (13-0, 9-0 OAC) vs.
#7 Wesley Wolverines (12-1)
Sat., Dec. 10 - 12 pm - Mount Union Stadium (Alliance, Ohio)

TV: ESPN3 / ESPN GAMEPLAN Michael Reghi (play-by-play), John Gregory (color) 


WDPN 1310 AM (Alliance): LISTEN LIVE
WRMU 91.1 FM (Alliance): LISTEN LIVE

LIVE STATS: http://livestats.prestosports.com/mountunion

Complete Mount Union Game Notes in PDF Format: CLICK HERE




No. 2 ranked University of Mount Union hosts No. 7 ranked Wesley College in the national semifinals of the 2011 NCAA Division III Football Playoffs Saturday, Dec. 10 at Mount Union Stadium in Alliance.

The game will kickoff at noon and will be broadcast on LIVE television online on ESPN3 and also available on ESPN GamePlan pay-per-view platform.  Check with your internet provider to make sure you have ESPN3 and your cable or satellite provider to order the game on ESPN GamePlan.

Mount Union (13-0) completed its sixth straight undefeated regular season to win its 23rd overall and 20th straight Ohio Athletic Conference and an automatic bid into the 32-team tournament then won its opening round game 47-7 over Benedictine (Ill.), a 30-10 second round victory over #25 Centre (Ky.) and 20-8 win against #9 Wabash (Ind.) in the quarterfinals.

The Purple Raiders are making their 23rd NCAA Tournament appearance with a 72-12 record in NCAA Playoff games.  Mount Union has advanced to the Stagg Bowl (National Championship game) 14 times and have won a record 10 National Championships.

Wesley (12-1) scored a 35-28 win over Hobart (N.Y.) in the first round, a 49-34 victory against #5 Linfield (Ore.) in the second round before scoring a 27-24 win in the quarterfinals at #3 Mary Hardin-Baylor (Texas).

The Wolverines earned the lone Pool B bid to the 2011 tournament, allotted for teams competing either as an independent or in a conference not eligible for an automatic bid. Wesley is making its eighth NCAA Playoff appearance and has an 18-7 record in the playoffs and has made the semifinal round now five times over the last seven years.


All Mount Union football games are broadcast on the radio on WDPN 1310 AM and WRMU 91.1 FM and simulcast online along with a LIVE STATS game tracker. You can also here the WRMU 91.1 FM feed on any phone by calling (330) 445-7900.


This will be the second-ever meeting between the two teams, which previously met in the semifinals of the 2009 NCAA Playoffs which Mount Union scored a 24-7 win in Alliance. 


Larry Kehres (Mount Union '71) is 316-23-3 (.928) in his 26th season as head coach and is one of the most successful coaches in college football history as he is one of only 11 coaches in college football history to win at least 300 games. His teams have won 22 OAC Championships, including the last 20 in a row, along with 10 of the last 18 NCAA Division III National Championships. He is a past president of the American Football Coaches Association and this past summer was the offensive coordinator for Team USA as they won the gold medal in the IFAF World Championships.

Mike Drass (Mansfield, Pa. '82) is 167-46-1 (.780) in his 19th season as head coach and 22nd year at Wesley.  He has built the Wolverines into one of the nation's top NCAA Division III programs as the Wolverines are 82-10 with five NCAA semifinal appearance since 2005.  An all-conference offensive lineman at Mansfield (PA), he spent four years as a high school coach and two years as an assistant at his alma mater before joining the staff at Wesley in 1989.


The winner heads to the NCAA Division III National Championship game - The Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl inSalem, Virginia against the winner of the other semifinal between St. Thomas (Minn.) and Wisconsin-Whitewater next Friday at 7pm.  The game will be broadcast nationally on ESPNU and online at ESPN3.


This will be Wesley's second trip to Stark County this year as they played NCAA Division II Walsh in October.  On the trip offensive coordinator Chip Knapp's son Ben, had a serious health issue and was just moved out of intensive care this week. This event and the last few weeks have brought Wesley's players together and inspired them. 

The offense centers on South Region Offensive Player of the Year -- quarterback Shane McSweeney.  The senior has completed 65.3 percent of his passes this season for 2,669 yards and 31 touchdowns while throwing just six interceptions.  McSweeny has been just as impressive with his feet, rushing for 712 yards on a team-high 158 carries with a team-high 12 TD's.  Junior Askia Jahad also has 795 yards and 9 TD's rushing, while senior tight end Sean McAndrew is the top receiver with 35 catches, 10 for TD's, for 407 yds.   

All-South Region First Team senior defensive end Chris Mayes with 20.5 tackles for loss seven sacks and three forced fumbles was lost for the season with an injury in the second round win against Linfield, but the Wolverines have many other talented players on the unit.  Senior linebacker Jeff Morgan has a team-best 99 stops with seven sacks while defensive backs in senior Dakevis Howard and sophomore Leon Jones each have four interceptions.


Fifty-three Lake Erie College Student/Athletes 

recognized for Academic Success by GLIAC

PAINESVILLE, OHIO – Fifty-three Lake Erie College Student/Athletes were recognized for their performance in the classroom during the fall 2011 sports season by earning a place on the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) All-Academic and Academic Excellence Teams. 

Thirty-two Storm student-athletes were named All-Academic while 21 were named Academic Excellence.   Last year, 40 Student/Athletes were named to the teams during the fall.   

The Storm football team had the most overall selections with 22, including 17 All-Academic picks.  Both women’s soccer and volleyball each had 10 players named, including six each on the Academic Excellence Team. 

To be eligible, the student-athlete must be an active member on the roster at the end of the season, not a freshman or a first-year transfer student.  All-Academic Teams are comprised of those Student/Athletes that meet criteria and carry a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0-3.49. Academic Excellence Teams are comprised of student athletes that have a cumulative GPA of 3.50-4.0.


Sport: Cross Country





Hometown/High School

Jeanne Lee



Geneva, Ohio/Western Reserve Academy

Devin O'Neill



Concord, Ohio/Mentor

Samantha Smith


Early Childhood Education

Brunswick, Ohio/Brunswick


Sport: Football





Hometown/High School

Ben Bryan


Political Science

Kensington, Ohio/Carrollton

Brendan Gallagher


Intervention Specialist

Aurora, Ohio/Aurora

Mike Hounshell


Criminal Justice

Willoughby, Ohio/Notre Dame Cathedral Latin

Taylor Jonard