Gannon charges into NCAA quarterfinals
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The strength of the PSAC women's basketball conference is evident given that it had five teams in the NCAA Division II women's tournament.
And one PSAC team -- Gannon -- has advance to the Division II national quarterfinals, and perhaps even more importantly, the Lady Knights had to beat another PSAC team in the regional final to get there.
Gannon beat California, 50-47, Monday to advance to the Elite Eight and the Lady Knights will play Ashland (Ohio) Tuesday in San Antonio, Texas.
The march to the Elite Eight is a nice bounce back for Gannon, which was the best team in the PSAC all season and won the regular season West title, then was upset by Bloomsburg in the conference tournament.
The Lady Knights still earned a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament and rolled through their first three games, winning by a total of 47 points.
The Lady Knights are led by three players -- senior Jen Papich, a Fox Chapel graduate; sophomore Brittany Batts; and sophomore Nettie Blake.
Papich, who is a 1,000-point scorer, leads the team with a 12.5 average and averages 5.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. She was named the PSAC West Athlete of the Year.
The Point Park baseball team (9-9, 2-2 KIAC) was ranked in the top 10 nationally (NAIA) to start the season but has gotten off to a bit of a slow start.
But one guy who hasn't struggled is third baseman Jordan Crowell, who recently moved into the starting lineup and is leading the team in hitting with a .440 average (11 for 25).
Crowell has played in 12 games, started eight, and he has a .560 slugging percentage, one home run and six RBIs.
He was named the KIAC baseball player of the week after hitting .571 (8 for 14) with a .786 slugging percentage in four games last week. He hit safely in all four games and drove in five runs.
The IUP men were the last local team standing, but the Crimson Hawks season died Tuesday in the regional final, 86-63.
IUP won the PSAC for the third time in four years and finished 26-5. The Crimson Hawks didn't have anyone in the top 10 in scoring but they had four players who averaged double figures .
But that balance -- along with their defense (60 points allowed per game) -- is what made them such a consistently tough opponent.
Grove City's women's 200 medley relay earned NCAA Division III All-American honors Wednesday at the Division III championship meet in Shenandoah, Texas.
The relay team of sophomore Lauren Cassano, senior Kait Riesmeyer, junior Kaley Hess and senior Jenny Ryan finished 11th in a time 1 minute, 46.14 seconds and just missed eclipsing the school record by 0.02 seconds.
Participants earn All-American status by finishing in the top 16 at the national meet.
First Published March 22, 2013 12:12 am