A Page -- June 7, 2011

Two-time Academic All American 

Christine Chiricosta from Avon Lake 

makes first team Academic All MAC;  

Akron native Stephanie Danesis and

Mentor native Ashley Frey also get 

Academic/Athletic honors from MAC

A pair of Bowling Green State University tennis standouts have been named to the Academic All-Mid-American Conference Team.  Senior Christine Chiricosta and sophomore Maddy Eccleston were voted to the team, which was announced Tuesday afternoon (May 31) by the league office.

Chiricosta was selected to the team for the third consecutive season, while Eccleston earned the honor in her first year of eligibility for the award.  The Academic All-MAC Team is the result of voting by the league's Faculty Athletics Representatives.

Chiricosta, a native of Avon Lake, Ohio (Avon Lake HS), is quite possibly the most decorated player in BGSU tennis history.  She finished her career holding all three school records for wins.  Chiricosta had a total of 178 combined career victories, with 89 singles and 89 doubles wins.  In the 2010-11 campaign, she was named to the All-Mid-American Conference First Team for the second-straight season, after earning all-conference second-team honors in each of her first two years at BGSU.
In the 2010-11 campaign, Chiricosta had an overall mark of 50-20, having played at the number-one flight in both singles and doubles.  That 50-win total tied her for fifth place on the BGSU single-season wins list.  The team co-captain had identical marks of 25-10 in both singles and doubles on the season.  Her singles win total was fifth on the BG single-season list, and the doubles win total deadlocked her for fifth on that school chart.

Chiricosta has amassed a veritable plethora of hardware off the court as well as on.  Earlier this spring, she earned the BGSU Department of Athletics Medal of Honor.  The Medal of Honor is the highest award given by the athletics department, and is given to one male and one female who encompass everything that a BGSU student-athlete should be.  One year earlier, she had been named BGSU’s Junior Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
Chiricosta with long-time doubles mate Maddy Eccleston

On the court, in addition to earning All-MAC First-Team honors, Chiricosta shared the conference’s Leann Grimes Davidge Sportsmanship Award.  That award, which is the result of voting by the MAC women’s tennis student-athletes, is presented to the player or players who displayed outstanding sportsmanship in MAC competition.  Chiricosta was named the MAC’s Scholar-Athlete of the Week twice in her senior year and five times in her Falcon career.

In the classroom, Chiricosta maintained a perfect 4.00 cumulative grade-point average as an adolescent/young adult/secondary education major.
Eccleston, a native of Toledo, Ohio (St. Ursula Acad.), won two-thirds of her matches, going 46-23 this season.  Her win total tied her for eighth on the BGSU single-season list.  Eccleston had a record of 21-13 in singles, and went 25-10 in doubles play.  Her doubles win total tied her for fifth on the BG seasonal chart.

Eccleston played at the fifth singles flight through the early portion of the dual-match schedule, posting a 7-2 record.  She played a pair of fourth-flight matches in late February, then moved to the number-two spot and remained there for the rest of the season, including all MAC regular-season and tourney matches.

In doubles, Eccleston played at the top flight all season, teaming with Christine Chiricosta for all but one of her 35 matches on the year.  That duo went 16-6 in dual-match play, including a 6-2 mark in MAC regular-season action.  They won eight consecutive matches from early February to late March, and ended the regular season by winning 13 of the last 15 matches.

Eccleston has a career winning percentage of .662 as a Falcon.  After only two years, is just one win away from moving into the top 25 in career victories at BGSU.  She has an overall mark of 86-44 through the 2010-11 season.

In the classroom, Eccleston maintains a 3.92 cumulative GPA as a health science major through the spring of 2011.

BGSU, Akron and Western Michigan each had two student-athletes voted to the eight-member Academic All-MAC Team.  Chiricosta and Eccleston were joined by UA's Angelika Jogasuria and Prang Pantusart, WMU's Amanda Moccia and Rachel Denny, Miami's Stephanie Danesis and Toledo's Ashley Frey.  Chiricosta and Moccia both were three-time selections.

To be nominated for the team, a student-athlete must have a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 3.20 and must have competed in at least 50 percent of the athletic competitions for their sport in the current academic year.  Freshmen and first-year transfers are not eligible to be nominated.

The tennis Falcons concluded the 2010-11 season with 15 wins, just one shy of the school record, and finished three spots higher than predicted in the MAC standings.   BGSU finished the campaign with a dual-match record of 15-8 and a MAC ledger of 5-3.  The Falcons, picked to place seventh in the MAC in the preseason coaches poll, actually finished fourth before advancing to the semifinal round of the MAC Championships.

The complete 2011 Academic All-MAC Team follows...

Angelika Jogasuria, Akron, Sophomore, Nursing, 3.46, Serpong, Indonesia
Prang Pantusart, Akron, Sophomore, Business, 3.49, Amphur Muang, Nonthaburi, Thailand
&# Christine Chiricosta, Bowling Green, Senior, AYA Secondary Education, 4.00, Avon Lake, Ohio
Maddy Eccleston, Bowling Green, Sophomore, Health Science, 3.92, Toledo, Ohio
Stephanie Danesis, Miami, Junior, Exercise Science, 3.46, Akron, Ohio
Ashley Frey, Toledo, Senior, Civil Engineering, 3.58, Mentor, Ohio
Rachel Denny, Western Michigan, Junior, Biomedical Sciences, 3.91, Oakland Township, Mich.
&# Amanda Moccia, Western Michigan, Senior, Biomedical Sciences, 3.88, Livonia, Mich.

Ashley Frey, a senior at Toledo who hails from Mentor, is a civil engineering major with a 3.58 GPA. She finished the season with a 19-13 mark in singles play, including a 5-3 record against MAC opponents. The 2011 second-team all-conference recipient teamed with a number of doubles partners throughout the year including Alexandra Cristello (4-3), Polina Guimaraes (7-5) and Kelsey Anonsen (4-5), for a total record of 15-13. She was also named MAC Player of the Week earlier this season.
Over her career at Toledo, Frey amassed an overall record of 162-88. The win total surpassed former Rocket Maha Guirguis (160) for the most in program history.
The eight-member team is the result of voting by the faculty athletic representatives from among a list of candidates with a minimum of sophomore status and a minimum 3.20 GPA and have participated in at least 50 percent of the contests for that particular sport. First-year students and junior college transfers in their first year of residence are not eligible for the award.
In addition to making Academic All MAC, Miami junior Stephanie Danesis from Akron was a First-Team All-MAC selection, along with Chiricosta.

She finished the year 24-10 overall, including 19-5 in dual matches. She split time between the No. 1 (8-4) and No. 2 (11-1) positions and was 6-2 in conference play. In doubles play, the Akron native teamed with Megan Martzolf for a 19-6 record at No. 1. The duo became the first players to ever gain a national ranking, reaching as high as 66th in the country.

Nominees must have a minimum 3.20 cumulative grade point average to be eligible for the team. 

Lake Erie College's Ryan Rua (Amherst) 

Named to Daktronics All-American 

Baseball Team; Junior shortstop and 

MLB draft prospect becomes Storm's

first baseball All-American
PAINESVILLE, OHIO –  Already one of the most decorated players in school history, junior shortstop Ryan Rua (Amherst, Ohio/Amherst) was named to the 2011 Daktronics, Inc. All-America Baseball Team as an honorable mention selection. Rua is the first Lake Erie College baseball player to earn All-American honors in the program’s 10-year history. 

“It’s a tremendous honor to be named to the All-American team,” Rua said.  “And to be the first baseball player from Lake Erie College to do so is very special.”  

The team was selected by members of the NCAA Division II College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) and has been sponsored by scoring and timing display system manufacturer and supplier Daktronics, Inc. since 2007.

A total of 68 student-athletes were recognized nationally on the All-American team.

For Rua it is his fourth post-season all-star team selection.  He was previously a first-team All-Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, American Baseball Coaches Association All-Midwest Region and Daktronics, Inc. All-Midwest Region selection as well as a second-team National College Baseball Writers Association All-Midwest Region pick.

“All three (conference, region and All-American) were personal goals of mine this season,” said Rua, who was one of three Storm players picked for the All-Region team along with senior Brandon James (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) and classmate Matt Toth (Lorain, Ohio/Admiral King). “To have three players on the All-Region teams, and for me to make an All-American squad, really shows how much this program has grown in such little time and where it is headed.” 

“An accomplishment like being the first All-American in baseball school history certainly speaks for itself,” said Storm head coach Brian McGee.  “It’s the highest individual honor a player can get.  In order to reach that standing, you have to play consistent baseball both offensively and defensively throughout the course of an entire season, which can be quite grueling for a student-athlete. And Ryan has done that, not just this season, but throughout his entire career.”

Ranked as the fourth-highest draftable prospect in Division II by Baseball America prior to the season, Rua had another stellar season at the plate.  He batted an even .400 for the second straight season and set Lake Erie single-season records with 68 hits and 19 stolen bases.  He also led the team with 44 RBI, 42 runs scored and 16 doubles while tying for the team lead with five home runs.  Rua slugged a team-high .594 and had a Storm-best 1.031 OPS, starting all 47 games.

I think my play on the field has been directly affected, by the coaches that I have had throughout my 3 years.  All coaches that have been here with me have always been willing to help out and workout whenever it was needed.  Also,

“For a player to achieve an individual accomplishment of this magnitude, he obviously must perform on the field and put up strong individual numbers,” McGee said.  “But to do that, he needs teammates who are supportive and hard working and Ryan had that with Matt Toth getting on base in front of him and Brandon James protecting him in the lineup.  Of course, you have to take advantage of those opportunities and Ryan did that often and came through with some big plays for us.”

Rua agreed with his head coach.  “I couldn’t, or wouldn’t, ask for any other teammates to play with,” he said. “We have always been such a tight-knit bunch of guys, on and off the field, who like to joke around and have a good time with each other, and I think that makes it a lot easier on the field as well.”

In addition to his performance at the plate, Rua also contributed on the mound, going 1-0 with two saves and a 3.18 ERA in six relief appearances.

For his career, Rua has a .374 average with 27 home runs and 131 RBI.  He has banged out 276 hits and scored 117 runs while swiping 33 bases.  He is the school’s career leader in slugging, homers, RBI, total bases and stolen base percentage.        

“Ryan has had three tremendous years for us now,” McGee added. “Had we been in a conference before this year, he may have had a shot to be noticed more and be receiving multiple All-American honors, he’s been that good and consistent a player for our program. He definitely is one of the best players in school history, along with guys like James, Toth and Ben Reed.”

Rua added, “I think my play on the field has been directly affected by the coaches that I have had throughout my three years.  All the coaches that have been here with me have always been willing to help out and work with me whenever it was needed.  I could not have achieved the individual success without their help.”

The 6-foot-3, 185-pound Rua has been listed on several draft scouting services as one of the top 15 shortstops and top 30 middle infield prospects eligible for the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft which takes place June 6-8.

Mentor's Brandon James and Rua Earn 

Spots on NCBWA All-Region Team

PAINESVILLE, OHIO – For the third time this spring, Lake Erie College baseball players Brandon James (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) and Ryan Rua (Amherst, Ohio/Amherst Steele) have been named to a regional all-star team.  Most recently, the pair was named to the 2011 NCBWA Midwest Region Second Team, selected by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.

Earlier this spring, the two were named to the Daktronics, Inc. All-Region and the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) All-Region First Teams, as well as the All-Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Team. 

After entering the year as the fourth-ranked draftable prospect in Division II according to Baseball America, Rua had school single-season records with 68 hits and 19 stolen bases and led the Storm in 11 statistical categories on offense.  The junior shortstop batted an even .400 (68-of-170) for the second straight year, scored 42 runs and drove in 44. He had 16 doubles and shared the team lead with five home runs. Rua slugged a team-high .594 and had a Storm-best 1.031 OPS, starting all 47 games.

A seior two-sport star at LEC, leftfielder James capped his career by leading the entire GLIAC in hitting with a .414 average (65-of-157). He hit two homers and drove in 31 runs, had 10 doubles and stole nine bases.  He scored 32 times and was second on the team in on-base percentage and slugging percentage. James ended his career as the Lake Erie leader in 14 categories, including games played, hits, average and stolen bases.