Michigan’s Ryan a top 5 seed for NCAA finals
G RYAN (KUTZTOWN) » The junior has earned All-American mention five times in her first two seasons with the Michigan women’s swim team but she’s in a prime spot to earn first team honors at the NCAA Division I Swim Championships starting March 15 in Indianapolis, Ind. Ryan is seeded third in the 500 freestyle (4:34.28), fourth in the 1,650 freestyle (15:44.93) and she also anchors the 800 free relay which is seeded fourth (6:55.34). She’s 26th in the 200 freestyle (1:44.94). The top eight finishers in each event earn All-American honors. AMY FISTER (KUTZTOWN)
» The Memphis senior has been selected to compete in the NCAA Rifle Championships next weekend in Columbus, OH. It is her fourth straight NCAA appearance. She helped the Tigers finish fourth in 2014 and competed in smallbore the last two seasons. She’s competing in smallbore again this year and has improved every year – 575.1 as a sophomore, 579.6 as a junior and 580.8 this year. Fister had a combined season-best score (1170) at the Tiger Open earlier in the season and posted a 582 score in smallbore to finish seventh at the NCAA Qualifier Feb. 18 in Murray, Ky. HEATHER WANNER
(FLEETWOOD) » The Alvernia senior had a busy weekend at the Middle Atlantic Conference Indoor Track Championships Feb. 24-25 in Bethlehem.
in the 60 meter dash in 7.92 and second in the 200 meter dash in 26.28. She also finished sixth in the long jump with a 17 foot, 3 ¼ inch effort. And she ran legs on the 4x2 relay which finished sixth in 1:52.03 and the 4x4 relay which finished eighth in 4:29.38. The Crusader women finished eighth. BRETT KOCH (SCHUYLKILL
VALLEY) >> The Messiah freshman competed in his first Middle Atlantic Conference Indoor Track Championship on Feb. 24-25 in Bethlehem and we found himself on top of the podium after he captured the 60 middle hurdles with a season-best time of 8.83. He also finished 10th in the high jump in 5 feet, 10 inches which was short of his personal best of 6 feet, 1 ¼ inches which he recorded at the Susquehanna Invitational in Selinsgrove. The Falcons finished third in the MAC Championship.
ADRIENNE PUGLIA (HAMBURG) >> The Lock Haven senior scored a big victory in the weight throw at the PSAC Indoor Track Championships Feb. 25-26 in Edinboro. Her toss of 56 feet, 3 ¼ inches was a NCAA Division II provisional mark and she finished three inches ahead of the runner-up and 5 feet, 3 inches ahead of the third place finisher. It was Puglia’s third victory of the winter, also winning at the Bison Open on Jan. 27-28 and the Orange & Maroon Invitational Jan. 21 in Selinsgrove. KALI HEPNER (HAMBURG) >> The Shippensburg junior finished fourth in the pole vault at the PSAC Indoor Track Championship Feb. 25-26 in Edinboro. She cleared 11 feet, 8½ inches. Hepner set a career record when she finished first at the Kutztown 6 Team Qualifier on Feb. 20 with a 16 foot effort. She finished seventh in the PSAC meet as a sophomore (10-10 ¾) and sixth as a freshman (11-2 ¼). The Raiders won the team title with 115 points, four ahead of runner-up Bloomsburg.
BEN BORTZ (EXETER) >> Ben Bortz is in his fourth season pitching for the East Stroudsburg baseball team and the 6-foot-1, 200-pound senior right-hander figures to see plenty of action on the mound this spring.
Bortz, from Reading (Exeter Township), has already pitched in two games for the 5-3 Warriors and has picked up a save, that coming on a 3-1 victory over Post on Feb. 19 in Holly Springs, N.C. He’s worked 2.1 innings and given up three hits, no runs and one walk with five strikeouts. He entered this season having pitched 41 games with just two starts with a 7-2 record.
“Ben provides senior leadership and he understands what we expect from our pitching staff,” head coach John Kochmansky said. “He is a pitcher who can enter in the fourth or fifth inning or finish a game.”
The coach feels that Bortz could be a workhorse in his final year with the team.
“We expect Ben to pitch anywhere from one to three or four innings in relief and be effective,” Kochmansky said. “He can throw multiple pitches for strikes and can gather strikeouts.” XAVIER SMITH (DANIEL BOONE) >> The junior sprinter will be one of six Penn State men headed to College Station, Texas, next weekend to compete in the NCAA Division I Indoor Track Championships. Smith is a member of the 4x400 relay that captured the Big Ten title with a time of 3:04.80 on Feb. 25 in Geneva, OH. He will run the second leg, the team rated fourth on the NCAA performance list. Smith just missed out on being in the top 16 in the 60 meter and 200 meter dashes. He missed the 60 by .01 second and the 200 by .24 seconds. He finished first in the 60 and fourth in the 200 at the Big