A Page -- May 4, 2012 -- PM Edition

Brittany Papp  Kristen Gromes 
Papp (L), Gromes (R)
Polar Bears, Lightning Unable to Stop Raiders in OAC Softball Tournament Opener

ADA, Ohio—The Mount Union softball team opened the Ohio Athletic Conference Tournament with a 6-1 win over No. 24 Ohio Northern that featured a 45-minute lightning delay Friday afternoon in Ada. The Purple Raiders (21-18) have now won seven consecutive games.

Capitalizing on Ohio Northern miscues proved to be the difference for the Raiders.

After being held hitless in the first two innings, the Raiders got on the board first with a pair of hits in the 3rd inning. Brittany Papp (Uniontown/Green) singled up the middle. Kristen Gromes (Navarre/Fairless) then singled down the first base line and an overthrown ball to third allowed Papp to score.

The Polar Bears responded with a run of their own in the bottom of the inning. Christin Miller reached base and scored on a triple by Kelly Sheridan. Kimi Blewett followed with a flyout to Gromes, who gunned down Sheridan at the plate to end the inning and remain tied.

Another Ohio Northern error allowed the Raiders to score in the 5th inning. Brenna Longo (Moon, Pa./Moon) singled to begin the inning and moved to second on a sac bunt by Kaylah Nieschwitz (Canton/St. Thomas Aquinas) before advancing to third on a wild pitch. The Polar Bears appeared to get out of the inning on a Julie Olbrych (Youngstown/Boardman) grounder to third, but a throwing error at first allowed Longo to score the go-ahead run.

Amy Brown (Uniontown/Lake) singled to begin the 6th inning. Following a sac bunt by Leigh Siedlak(Westerville/Westerville South), Shelby Carmichael (Dalton/Dalton) singled to drive in Keilah Capriola(Akron/Coventry), who pinch-ran for Brown.

With one out in the top of the 7th, the game was delayed due to lightning in the distance. When play resumed, the Polar Bear pitchers were unable to find their control and three wild pitches led to three insurance runs for the Raiders. Marissa Earl (Massillon/Washington) had an RBI infield single in the inning.

Bre Willis (Navarre/Fairless) allowed just one earned run on six hits. Willis (11-8) recorded six strikeouts as she earned her second win of the season over the Polar Bears.

Mount Union will play John Carroll Friday at 3:30 pm.

Bianca Patel Named to All-UAA Women’s Tennis Team

PITTSFORD, N.Y. – With her combined 5-0 performance at last weekend's conference championship tournament, Case Western Reserve University sophomore Bianca Patel (Cincinnati, Ohio/Sycamore) has been named to the 2012 All-University Athletic Association Women's Tennis Second Team. Patel becomes only the second Spartan women's tennis player to earn All-UAA honors since 1994.

Bianca Patel (photo by Ryan Baker)

Patel posted a 2-0 record at No. 5 singles and a combined 3-0 record with two matches at No. 3 doubles and one at No. 2. The Spartans placed seventh as a team with their first two matches versus No. 4 nationally-ranked Carnegie Mellon University (Pa.) and the University of Rochester (N.Y.), 14th in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Northeast Region.

For the season, Patel finished third on the squad with 19 singles wins (19-8 overall), competing in the third through sixth positions. In doubles play, she was a combined 16-10 with a 7-5 mark at No. 2.

Overall in two seasons, Patel is 33-15 in singles and 26-21 in doubles. The only other CWRU women's tennis player to earn All-UAA status since 1994 is current junior Erika Lim, who received the honor in 2010.

The Spartans finished one of the best regular seasons in program history with an 18-6 overall record and the highest regional ranking in program history (seventh) according to the latest ITA polls.

Hibberd, Schneider Named CoSIDA Academic All-District

Wright State baseball player Jake Hibberd and softball Colleen Scheider have been named to the 2012 Capital One Academic All-District Teams as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America. This program recognizes the nation's top student-athletes for their combined performances athletically and in the classroom. Both will advance to a national ballot later this month.

Hibberd, a senior from Miamisburg, Ohio, was also selected last year as well as being named to the national second team. He is a mass communication major with a 3.58 GPA. On the field this year, the first baseman is currently hitting .363 with eight home runs, 40 RBIs and a team-high 69 hits while starting in all 45 games.

The baseball team, currently in first place of the Horizon League, will host Valparaiso this weekend for three games, starting tonight at 6:30 pm.

Schneider, a junior first baseman from Centerville, OH, is hitting .292 with 18 RBIs and three home runs in 45 games and 113 at bats. She is a mechanical engineering major with a 3.93 GPA.

The softball team will play three games this weekend at UIC to end the regular season.

The Academic All-America program honors male and female student-athletes annually who have succeeded at the highest level on the playing field and in the classroom. Individuals are selected through voting by CoSIDA, a 2,000 member organization consisting of sports public relations professionals for colleges and universities in the United States and Canada.

To be eligible, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.30 on a scale of 4.00, have reached at least sophomore athletic and academic standing at his/her current institution and be nominated by his/her sports information director.