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Penn College Tennis, Cross-Country Teams Repeat as PSUAC Champions

The expected and the unexpected happened for Pennsylvania College of Technology athletic teams during Penn State University Athletic Conference championships over the weekend and both were good. As expected, the men’s cross-country team, which was unbeaten during the regular season in PSUAC meets, cruised to its eighth consecutive conference championship. In the process, freshman Jake Shedden (Canton) won the men’s individual 5.38-mile race in 30 minutes, 49 seconds and the Wildcats gave 11th-year coach Mike Paulhamus his 300th career coaching victory (his record now is 303-153-2 overall and 166-6 in conference meets). It was another story for the coed tennis team, however. Penn College finished third during the regular season after going 8-4.Penn StateYork was No. 1 with an 11-1 mark andPenn StateBrandywine was second at 9-3. After Saturday’s first rounds of action, the Wildcats lost matches in five of eight flights and seemed out of the running. But then came the unexpected. On Sunday, seniors Rob Kemrer (Milton), at No. 4 men’s singles, and Danielle Trout (Harrisburg), at No. 2 women’s singles, won individual championships and Trout and junior Rachael Emmons (Washington, N.J.) teamed for the No. 1 women’s doubles crown to give Penn College 60 points and a one-point win overPenn StateYork.

FLASHBACKCross-CountryThe Penn College men finished the conference meet with 21 points, followed byPenn StateScranton with 51,Penn StateLehigh Valley with 67 andPenn StateBrandywine with 103. Individually for Penn College behind Shedden, Travis Cain (Bloomsburg) was second in 32:10, Seth Beckman (Linden) was fifth in 33:19, Corvin Oberholtzer (Wellsboro) was 10th in 34:25 and Ed Knyff (Ocean Gate, N.J.) was 12th in 34:55. “All of the kids ran strong. We had a good week of practice and it carried into the meet. Everybody was happy with their times. We were pretty strong,” Paulhamus said of the meet run atPenn StateMont Alto. “The guys did an excellent job. They’ve done it all season.” With only two women runners, Penn College was unable to compete as a team; however senior Tamara Pavlov (Lewisburg) finished second overall in 20:19 over a 2.99-mile course, just missing first place by three seconds. Also for the lady Wildcats, Shannon Abercrombie (Roaring Branch) was eighth in 22:16. “I hope we have a good practice this week to get ready for the United States Collegiate Athletic Association Championships (Nov. 5 in Concord, N.H.). I don’t know if we’ll be No. 1 or No. 2 this year. We’re pretty competitive and we’ll be, hopefully, in the top five,” Paulhamus added.

Team TennisOn Wednesday, Penn College closed out its regular season with a 6-3 loss toPenn StateBrandywine. Trout won in both singles and doubles, setting the stage for the weekend championships. “We were not the favorites. At the end of the first day, we weren’t really on anyone’s radar screen. Saturday night, it looked like a York-Brandywine race to the finish,” Penn College coach Aimee Plastow said of the weekend event at Penn State’s main campus.

“We had really taken a beating (Saturday). Shane (Burridge, Ephrata) lost at No. 1, Brad (Fisher/Montoursville) was out at No. 2. Jake (Kuska/Mohnton) lost a hard-fought match at No. 3 and Rachel was ousted from the women’s No. 1 doubles tourney,” Plastow continued. “Shane and Adam (Groff/Washington Borough) dropped the men’s No. 1 doubles and Rob and Alex (Clemens/Lebanon) were out of No. 2 doubles contention. On the surface, things looked bleak. York was in six of the finals, Brandywine was in five of the finals. We were in three. I went over the possible outcomes and decided that in the race we had a long shot that meant all the stars had to line up perfectly. All my predictions for position wins had to take place. One change and we would lose any chance of coming out on top,” the third-year coach, whose previous two teams had won PSUAC championships, said.

“We had a “˜secret weapon’ the ladies. We had Rob in No. 4 men’s final, but both Danni in No. 2 women’s singles and Danni and Rachel in women’s doubles. The York and Brandywine girls had defaulted or been eliminated, leaving the possible points for Penn College. Since Brandywine and York were in all of the men’s finals, if they split the wins, and if we won all our finals, there was a chance that we could pull ahead.

“On Sunday, we shocked a confident York and Brandywine to capture the PSUAC team title by one point!” Plastow exclaimed. “It all came down to Trout’s No. 2 match. Facing a strong Mont Alto player, her determination and skills helped her overcome some physical pain for the title. The match lasted several hours with long points and nerve-racking back-and-forth games. Danni pulled it out 6-4, 6-3.

“Our three-peat was totally unexpected, but proves that a team should prepare to win, do its best and never give up. It was a truly awesome weekend for the Penn College tennis players,” added Plastow, whose career coaching record at the college now is 48-7. Other teams and point totals werePenn StateBrandywine, 52;Penn StateLehigh Valley, 38;Penn StateMont Alto, 34; andPenn StateHazleton, 27.Men’s SoccerThe Wildcats completed a perfect 9-0 conference season with a 2-0 win Tuesday overPenn StateHazleton. Freshmen Mitch Pequignot (Trout Run) and Chris Brennan (New Hope) each netted a goal. The team closes out its regular season Monday against NCAA Division III Misericordia University.Women’s SoccerPenn College dropped to 5-7 Saturday when it lost its only match of the week, 1-0 to Valley Forge Christian College. The Wildcats close out their regular season Thursday hostingPenn StateBeaver.Women’s VolleyballPenn College advanced to Friday’s PSUAC semifinals with a 25-17, 27-25, 25-20 home playoff win overPenn StateBeaver on Wednesday. Freshman Lindsay Moyer (Canton) had 12 kills and five blocks, freshman Samantha Davis (North Apollo) had eight kills and two blocks and junior Lyndsey Smith (Mechanicsburg) had 27 assists. Friday in the conference semifinals, the third-seeded Wildcats fell to No. 2 seedPenn StateFayette, 14-25, 22-25, 18-25, to finish their season 17-7 overall and 14-4 in the conference. It marked the second year in a row the team was eliminated in the PSUAC semifinals. In 11 seasons under coach Bambi Hawkins, Penn College teams now are 141-89.

ON THE HORIZONAfter finishing its regular Penn State University Athletic Conference season unbeaten with a 9-0 record, the top-seeded Pennsylvania College of Technology men’s soccer team drew a first-round bye and will host No. 4Penn StateBrandywine in a semifinal match at 4 p.m. Wednesday. Also on Wednesday, No. 2Penn StateNew Kensington will host No. 6Penn StateHazleton. The championship is set Sunday at Penn State’s Jeffrey Field. Prior to finishing second last season, the Wildcats had won five straight PSUAC titles.

SCHEDULE/RESULTS Cross-Country Men’s overall record: 43-10 PSUAC record: 16-0 Saturday, Oct. 23 PSUAC Championships atPenn StateMont Alto, men finished first in a four-team field to win the team championship with freshman Jake Shedden (Canton) taking the individual crown Friday, Nov. 5 USCAA National Championships at Concord, N.H.

Golf Final overall record: 20-6 Overall/PSUAC record: 18-3

Men’s Soccer Overall record: 13-2 PSUAC record: 9-0 Tuesday, Oct. 19 at Penn State Hazleton, W, 2-0 Monday, Oct. 25 host Misericordia University, 5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 27 host No. 4 Penn State Brandywine in PSUAC semifinal, 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 31 PSUAC Championship at Penn State’s Jeffrey Field Friday-Sunday, Nov. 5-7 USCAA National Championships at Vermont Tech, TBA

Women’s Soccer Overall record: 5-7 Saturday, Oct. 23 host Valley Forge Christian College, L, 1-0 Thursday, Oct. 28 host Penn State Beaver, 5 p.m. Friday-Sunday, Nov. 5-7 USCAA National Championships at Randolph Center, Vt., TBA

Coed Tennis Overall/PSUAC records: 14-4 Wednesday, Oct. 20 host PSU Brandywine, L, 6-3 Saturday, Oct. 23-Sunday, Oct. 24 PSUAC Championships at Penn State, Penn College won its third straight team title and had individual champions in Rob Kemrer at No. 4 men’s singles and Danielle Trout (Harrisburg) at No. 2 women’s singles and Trout and Rachael Emmons (Washington, N.J.) teamed for the No. 1 women’s doubles crown.

Women’s Volleyball Overall record: 17-7 PSUAC record: 14-4 Wednesday, Oct. 20 host PSU Beaver in PSUAC playoffs, W, 25-17, 27-25, 25-20 Friday, Oct. 22 vs. PSU Fayette in PSUAC semifinal, L, 14-25, 22-25, 18-25.

(Complete rosters and season schedules are available on the college’s Athletics Web site . For more information on the PSUAC, visit on the Web; more about the USCAA also is available online.)

Vol. 9, No. 11

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