AH grad Racek shows solid performance at fencing regionals

First Posted: 3/24/2015

Vassar College freshman Tom Racek came up with a solid performance in his first-ever NCAA Northeast Regional Fencing Championships at New York University in New York City.

Racek (Abington Heights) posted a 2-3 record in foil during the preliminary round with victories over Yale’s James Broughton (5-3) and Boston College’s Peter Wetzel (5-4). In the second round, he defeated Harvard’s Brian Kaneshige 5-3 but his run ended after that and he fell short of earning a berth in the NCAA Tournament. He finished 19th and his season record was 51-36.

“His showing at the regionals was excellent for a freshman,” coach Bruce Gillman said. “More than that, he almost immediately established himself as a leader on the team. The wins are only part of it.”

The coach lauded Racek’s work ethic.

“Tom and Kirsten Denman were always the last to leave practice, staying at least a half hour later than anyone else and they had to be pried off the strip during January and February when we needed to give up the space to the spring teams that needed indoor time,” Gillman said. “And, Tom consistently took at least three individual lessons a week from me and the other coaches in an effort to improve as quickly as possible. He was a great fencer and teammate this year and I think that he will only continue to improve over the next three years.”

Steier a solid performer

Sophomore Alissa Steier is the No. 1 starter for the Misericordia softball team. Steier, from Scott Township (Lakeland High), is 4-6 to start the season for the 5-7 Cougars. The 5-foot-4 right-hander has pitched in 11 games with eight starts. In 54 innings, she’s given up 62 hits and 34 runs, 21 earned, with 25 walks and 19 strikeouts. She has a 2.72 earned run average.

Steier’s top to efforts to date are a 5-0 shutout out of Mitchell when she tossed a one-hitter with seven strikeouts and a 6-1 triumph over Wesleyan when he gave up three hits and an unearned run.

“Alissa worked to improve her pitch locations as well as diversify her arsenal of pitches during the off-season,” coach Jen Probst said. “We played an extremely difficult schedule in Florida and she pitched in 11 out of 12 games. I was extremely impressed with her stamina, determination and ability to throw against some of the best hitters out there.”

Junior Cailey Ware (Abington Heights) is also on the squad and hit .200 (3-for-15) in Florida with five runs scored and two RBI. She had two hits, an RBI and a run scored against No. 15-ranked Augustana.

“During our spring trip, Cailey played in the outfield, was a designated hitter and a pinch runner,” Probst said. “She takes on any role we give her with confidence and a one hundred percent effort.”

Harris, Lewis on the links

Freshman Dave Harris and senior Matt Lewis helped the Keystone men’s golf team kick off the spring season at the Myrtle Beach Shootout at the Barefoot Golf Club in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The Giants finished sixth out of seven teams.

Harris (Abington Heights) carded an 86, shooting 41 on the front and 45 on the back. Lewis (Abington Heights) shot a 40-50—90.

Keystone is scheduled to compete in a dual match with Scranton Thursday, April 2 at the Glenmaura National Country Club in Moosic.

Show shows them

Bucknell freshman J.C. Show came off the bench to score 13 points in 18 minutes of action but it wasn’t enough as the Bison dropped a 73-67 decision to Temple in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament in Philadelphia. Bucknell finished 19-15 on the season.

Show (Abington Heights) hit five of 14 shots from the field including three of nine from 3-point range. On the season, the 6-foot-2, 204-pound guard averaged 6.9 points per game and hit 48 of 131 from outside the arc (36.6). He also had 54 rebounds, 34 assists and 11 steals.

Honors for Brier

Haverford sophomore Michael Brier of Clarks Summit (Scranton Prep) was named to the All-Centennial Conference first team after he ran a leg on the winning 4×800 relay at the league championships. The final time (7:59.78) was two seconds ahead of the runner-up.

Brier also earned honorable mention after he finished third in the mile run in 4:19.48. He was seeded ninth entering the meet but missed finishing second by .40.

Knowles wraps it up

Matt Knowles had a solid sophomore season for the Ursinus men’s basketball team, the Bears finishing 10-15 overall and 7-11 in the Centennial Conference.

Knowles, from Waverly (Scranton Prep), was second on the team in scoring (11.7). The 6-foot-2, 175-pound guard hit 35-of-102 3-point attempts (34.3) and had a college career high 22 points in a 94-85 loss to Washington College. He hit 7-of-11 shots from the field including 6-of-9 from outside the arc.

Knowles also had 50 rebounds, 43 assists and 30 steals on the season.

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