One Pennsylvania College of Technology fall sports team ended its season last week and two others head into Penn State University Athletic Conference championships this week.
Penn College golfers placed second in the PSUAC and eighth in the United States Collegiate Athletic Association championships, which ended last Tuesday, and later this week the college's cross country runners travel to PSU Brandywine on Saturday and its tennis players head for University Park on Saturday and Sunday for conference finals.
During two-day action on the Penn State Blue Course, Daemon College was the top team in the USCAA with a total team score of 605 while Penn State Mont Alto was the victor for the PSUAC with a 649 (sixth for USCAA). Six Penn College golfers shot a combined 678.
Freshman Jesse Newman was the top finisher for Penn College, placing 37th after shooting 84 both days. Sophomore Corey Teeple bounced back from a 91 on day one to shoot a 79 (170 total), good for 45th. Both Newman and Teeple earned spots on the PSUAC All-Conference Team.
Rounding out the Penn College effort were freshman Bryce Petersheim at 49 with an 82-89-171; junior Alex Howe at 58 with an 84-90-174; sophomore Nicolas Krupka at 62 with an 89-87-176; and freshman Brian MacPherson at 82 with a 97-90--187.
At the tournament, the USCAA announced the All-Academic Team award winners of which MacPherson was a recipient. To earn the award, the golfers had to have a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher.
In the PSUAC West Division, the Wildcats, with three wins and a second-place finish in four matches, won the regular- season championship.
"It didn't turn out the way we had wanted (with a conference title), but it's one of those things where one minute you are on top of your game (and the next). The guys went out and just didn't have their stuff," said Penn College coach Matt Haile. "Overall, it was a good season. They worked really hard and that's all you can ask for."
The Wildcats finished their regular season by topping a seven-team field of all-PSUAC schools, despite being short a couple of its runners.
In the conference championship, Penn College will field a full men's team but has just two women who will compete as individuals.
"I'm assuming, because we haven't lost this year to any of the PSUAC schools, that we're going into the championship as the favorite. We're going in with a positive attitude and I think I have the 'horses' that will be able to pull out the victory," said coach Mike Paulhamus.
Top Penn College runners are Dan Starr, Dan Blauvelt, Dan Flynn, Mike Acquaro and Ed Knyff. Top women are Eileen Harrington and Michelle Holzmann.
"If we win, it will be our 10th consecutive men's championship and 11 out of 13 since I've been with the college," Paulhamus said.
On Wednesday, for the second time this season, Penn College defeated PSU Mont Alto by a 6-3 score. Jordan Rodgers, Christopher Morrin, Nathan Scott and Adam Smith all won both their singles and doubles matches.
The team ended its regular season Saturday with an 8-1 win over PSU Lehigh Valley to go to 7-1 in the conference. Scott, Smith and Taylor Lapointe won both their singles and doubles matches.
"We're looking really good going into the tournament. Our guys are playing extremely well And our girls are competitive as well, so we have a good shot at winning. We're in a great position heading into next weekend," coach Robert Kemrer said.
Kemrer named Smith and Rodgers as having a good shot at singles titles and his men's doubles teams of Scott-Smith and Rodgers-Morrin also as title contenders.
In recent years, Penn College won conference team titles in 2008, 2009 and 2010 and finished second last season.
A 6-0 win over Valley Forge Christian College on Saturday improved the team's record to 8-2-1. Six players scored goals for Penn College. Reda Vermilya and Kirsten Foti shared the shutout in goal, notching four and two saves, respectively.
In their only match of the week, the Wildcats, behind a season-high, four-goal effort from Chris Brennan beat PSU New Kensington, 6-1, on Thursday to improve to 8-0 in the PSUAC and 11-2-1 overall.
Penn College stayed unbeaten in the conference on Wednesday with a 3-0 (25-6, 25-7, 25-7) win over PSU Scranton. Tara Powell, of Burgettstown, was tough on the service line with 11 aces. Courtney Gernert, of Palmyra, led with 10 kills and Caitlyn Curley, of Middletown, had 19 assists.
Back in action Thursday, the Wildcats swept PSU Harrisburg, 3-0 (25-12, 25-11, 26-24). Gernert had 14 kills and 10 digs while Curley led with 25 assists.
Penn College's unbeaten PSUAC string continued Saturday as it downed PSU Greater Allegheny, 3-0 (25-12, 25-12, 25-14), and PSU Beaver, 3-0 (25-21, 25-13, 25-14). Tara Powell totaled 22 kills and Curley had 44 assists on the day.
On Sunday at PSU Fayette, Penn College dropped its first conference match of the season to Fayette, 0-3 (6-25, 15-25, 21-25), snapping its PSUAC win streak at 12. Later in the afternoon, the Wildcats rebounded with a 3-0 (25-8, 25-16, 25-12) win over PSU New Kensington to go to 13-1 in the conference and 19-6 overall. Gabrielle George had 12 digs in the opener and 19 in the nightcap.