A Page -- May 26, 2012

Marissa Earl Kristen Gromes Rachel McAninch
(L to R) --Earl, Gromes, McAninch

Trio of Purple Raiders Named Academic All-OAC Softball

AUSTINTOWN, Ohio—Mount Union juniors Marissa Earl (Massillon/Washington), Kristen Gromes(Navarre/Fairless) and Rachel McAninch (West Jefferson/West Jefferson) have been selected Academic All-Ohio Athletic Conference Softball by the conference's 10 faculty athletics representatives.

Off the diamond, Earl boasts a 3.98 grade point average as an exercise science major. She is a member of the Exercise Science Club, as well as Alpha Lambda Delta.

Earl was one of just two Purple Raiders to start all 41 games this past season. She led the Raiders with 32 RBI, which is tied for the seventh-most in school history. Earl was second on the team with 30 runs, 38 hits, six doubles, three triples, five home runs, and seven stolen bases while hitting .328 at the plate. She also earned OAC All-Tournament Team and OAC Hitter of the Week honors this season.

A three-time Academic All-OAC selection—twice for softball and once for volleyball—Gromes maintains a 3.88 grade point average as a double-major in mechanical engineering and art. In addition to starting for Mount Union's volleyball team that advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament in the fall, Gromes is involved in many campus organizations, including Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Alpha Phi Omega co-ed service fraternity, Pi Mu Epsilon, Alpha Lambda Delta, and Association of Women Students.

Gromes, an All-OAC honorable mention and All-Tournament Team selection, started 40 games in centerfield as she led the Raiders in nearly every offensive category. Her .353 batting average, 42 hits, seven doubles, six triples, 36 runs, 21 walks, .613 slugging percentage, .469 on-base percentage, eight stolen bases, and .986 fielding percentage were all tops on the team. She also hit four home runs and drove in 14 runs on the season.

McAninch made 23 appearances while leading the Raiders with 138.2 innings pitched, 16 complete games, and 98 strikeouts. She finished the season 8-10 with two shutouts. McAninch already ranks near the top of several career pitching categories, including fourth in strikeouts, fifth in shutouts, and seventh in wins.

An honorable mention selection, McAninch maintains a 3.28 grade point average as an athletic training major. A two-time All-OAC First Team selection, she was named OAC John Wells Pitcher of the Year and Bob Jordan Rookie of the Year as a freshman in 2010.

In order to be selected Academic All-OAC, a student-athlete must have at least a 3.25 cumulative grade point average and be a starter or key reserve.

Mount Union finished the season 21-20 overall, fourth in the OAC at 10-8 and fell in the consolation finals of the OAC Tournament.

Mount Union's Beau Smith and Connor Mathis Named Academic All-OAC Baseball

AUSTINTOWN, Ohio -- Mount Union senior pitcher Beau Smith (Frederick, Md./Frederick) and sophomore outfielder Connor Mathis (Akron/Firestone) have been named Academic All-Ohio Athletic Conference Baseball by the conference's 10 faculty athletics representatives.

Smith had a team-best three complete games and 35 strikeouts as he went 4-5 with a 4.83 earned run average in 54 innings of work. Off the mound, he is a Health and Physical Education major with a 3.56 grade point average.

Mathis, an All-Ohio Athletic Conference and All-Mideast Region first team selection, started 40 games in right field and was the conference batting champion as he led the OAC in batting average (.450), hits (67) and runs batted in (56). He led the team with 14 stolen bases and had just 10 strikeouts in 149 at-bats. He was also named the OAC All-Tournament Team. He is an Exercise Science major with a 3.67 grade point average.

To be named Academic All-OAC, a student-athlete must be a starter or key reserve with at least a 3.25 cumulative grade point average.

Westlake's Colton Buffington two wins away 

from winning state singles title

Westlake's Colton Buffington won his first round match of the state tennis championships in Columbus Friday over Cameron Raglin from Reynoldsburg HS 6-4, 6-2 and defeated Peter Smetona of Shaker HS in the second round 6-0, 6-0, winning  a Golden Ball.

Today Colton will play Aaron Sandberg of  Walsh Jesuit in the semi-finals at 9:00am.