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Penn College Student-Athlete Named All-American Archer

Pennsylvania College of Technology archer Michelle Wright, a junior from Kendall, N.Y., earned collegiate All-American honors for the second time in her career last weekend.

Competing in the United States Intercollegiate Archery Championships on the UCLA campus in Los Angeles, Wright’s outdoor scores from last Friday and Saturday, combined with her totals from the indoor nationals earlier in the year, gave her All-American status.

“Michelle was a big-time player in the team rounds and also the individual competition. She is the college’s first female two-time All-American, and just missed adding another by a few points last year,” said Chad Karstetter, Penn College coach.

“She meant a great deal to the team. She was one of the veterans and helped keep everybody in line. She was a great asset to the team,” the coach added.

It marked the 30th time since 1997 that a Penn College archer has earned All-American status.

“We always seem to have a good pool of archers to pick and choose from. Just being in the East with all of the hunters gives some of the students a little bit of background in archery. We’ve done really well in nationals,” said Karstetter, himself a four-time All-American.

Along with her All-American status as an archer, Wright, a human services major, was named to the 2006 Female Compound All-Academic Archery Team. A minimum 3.0 overall grade-point average and top 25 percent in the class is required to make the squad. It was the second year in a row for her academic honor.

In addition to her individual honors, Wright helped the Penn College female compound team to a third-place finish at nationals. Also on the squad were Jessica Larson (freshman/Montoursville), Sarah Wilson (junior/Tyrone) and Lindsey Fackler (freshman/Halifax). James Madison took first and Texas A&M was second.

“Those four girls shot great. Sarah, Michelle and Jessica shot really good rounds and beat the first two teams they shot against. In the third round, they went against James Madison University, which went on to win the whole event, and only lost by a few points,” Karstetter said, adding it was particularly impressive considering that Larson was a first-year archer and that Wilson is in her first year shooting a compound bow after shooting a recurve bow last year.

Wildcats Larson and Mark Lambert (freshman/Venus), the latter who shoots on the male recurve team, were named national collegiate “Rookies of the Year,” a new honor.

According to Karstetter, the “Rookie of the Year” awards are given to archers who had no (or no more than very limited) exposure to the sport prior to college.

“They really had no experience, other than Mark did a little bit of hunting one year,” the coach said.

To earn the award, they were the top finishers among other rookies in their class. For doing so, each received a certificate and their choice of bows.

“They both shot excellent and I’m looking for them both of them to come back next year and, with their experience, to do even better,” Karstetter said.

Among the Penn College men, Ryan Rambo (sophomore/Millville) finished 10th in the nation in the male compound division.

“Ryan shot really well and should have made it further than he did. He shot a 115 out of 120 in the round he lost (his opponent during the head-to-head eliminations shot a 116) and that is an excellent score,” Karstetter said. “He was shooting at the top of his class. He was shooting good enough Sunday that he could have won the whole thing. If he just would have (matched up against) the right person and gone on to the next round, he could have moved right up.”

Reflecting on the season, Karstetter said, “I was very pleased with the way everybody shot at nationals. Jason Kornbau (senior/Red Lion) and Chris Adams (junior/Pen Argyl) shot their personal highs in the male recurve event. They didn’t place, but the fact that they competed at the national level and had the highest scores of their careers was excellent.

“I was very pleased with the way the whole season went. It was a relatively new team this year and I’m looking forward to having them back again next year.”

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