The annual event is special for many reasons. It is the final tribute to graduating senior-athletes and an occasion to celebrate the full-spectrum of contributions made by these athletes which only begins with physical effort. Mount Aloysius President Tom Foley praised the group for their total contributions. “While we celebrate your athleticism tonight, we also stand in awe of what so many of you accomplish away from the field. We cite your outstanding grade point average as a group, and the time-management skills and commitment to academics that so many of you have made. We cite too the commitment to community service so evident in the number of hours we track as a campus community each year.”
President Foley praised students and their coaches who continue to make academic achievement and giving to the community a priority at Mount Aloysius College.
Throughout the evening Mount Aloysius College coaches took the podium acknowledging their top players and thanking graduating seniors. Toward the end of the evening, President Foley invited Sr. Helen Marie Burns, RSM, vice president for mission integration, and still active volunteer Sr. Eric Marie Setlock, RSM to assist him in recognizing Board of Trustees Chairman, Mr. Daniel Rullo, Esq. Attorney Rullo was this year’s choice to receive the Ray and Louise Walker Award. The college’s softball, soccer and baseball field, together the recently completed Mountie stables were made possible through the generosity of the Walker’s and others.
Attorney Mr. Rullo is a native of Somerset County. An accomplished athlete, he earned a full-scholarship to the University of Pittsburgh, where he starred in football and earned membership to the University of Pittsburgh’s Athletic Hall of Fame. Mr. Rullo is a well-respected lawyer practicing in Somerset, Pa.; a partner in the Law Firm of Barbera, Clapper, Beener, Rullo and Melvin. He is a committed and long-time supporter of Mountie athletics and the nature of the Division III student-athlete. During his tenure as Mount Aloysius College Board Chairman, the Athletic Convocation and Wellness Center was completed.
Another highlight of the night was the introduction of Mountie senior basketball player Aaron Patrick, (Johnsonsburg, PA/Johnsonsburg). Patrick was one of 10 men’s basketball players at all collegiate levels nationally to be named to 2014 Allstate NABC Good Works Team, as announced by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC). The honor recognizes his tremendous work in the community. His honor included a trip to the NCAA Division I Final Four with Head Coach Lance Loya, where he was honored and rubbed shoulders with the likes of Duke and NBA star Grant Hill and broadcasting legend Dick Vitale.
The Mount Aloysius Athletics Department also named Male Co-Athletes of the Year. These honors went to Mountie senior basketball player Shawn Greenfield (Upper Marlboro, MD/Northern) and baseball junior pitcher Derrick Capiak (Williamstown, NJ/Williamstown).
Greenfield earned national recognition by being named to the D3 News Basketball All-American Honorable Mention Team, the first athlete in the college’s history to do so. Greenfield was also one of the highest scorers in NCAA Division III. He was the AMCC Player of the Year and a First Team All-Conference selection in addition to a place on the Great Lakes All-Region Team as a First Team selection.
Derrick Capiak, a returning First-Team All-Conference selection and AMCC Preseason Pitcher of the Year, has been dominant of late with four straight complete-game conference victories as the baseball team heads into the conference playoffs.
The Female Athlete of the Year was given to star basketball and softball player Lindsy Sammarco (Patton, PA). Sammarco fought through injury this year to lead the women’s basketball team to the AMCC Championship game for the first time in school history. Her individual accolades included AMCC Preseason Player of the Year as a senior, and a place on the all-conference team three times. On the softball diamond, Sammarco has also been a three-time all-conference selection and is currently hitting .376 with 18 RBI’s while playing tremendous defensive at third base for a softball team in the hunt for an AMCC championship.
The Male Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year went to Seth Shaffer (Schellsburg, PA/Chestnut Ridge) a four-year member of the baseball team and history/political science major with a 3.6 GPA. Seth also won the prize for best senior thesis with this excellent paper on quantum mechanics theory.
The Female Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year was awarded to softball standout Jalisa Westover (Flinton, PA/Faith Tabernacle), who in addition to being named AMCC Player of the Year and 2014 Preseason Player of the Year, has carried a 3.91 GPA as a Business Administration and Accounting Major.
Men’s basketball player Tanner Thomas (Beaverdale, PA/Forest Hills), golf star Dylan Link (Ebensburg, PA/Bishop Carroll) and baseball pitcher Chris Nolan (Harrisburg, PA/Central Dauphin) were all selected as Honorable Mentions for Male Scholar-Athlete. Women’s basketball player Morgan Brosnihan (McHenry, MD/Northern Garrett), cross country runner Nikki Binnie (Butler, PA/Knoch) and women’s soccer captain Elizabeth Josephson (Munson, PA/Philipsburg-Osceola) were named Honorable Mentions for Female Scholar-Athlete.
The Mount Aloysius College Athletics Banquet was a tremendous night for all involved and allowed the Mount Aloysius community to honor academics, service and on-field play of all Mountie athletes.
Most Valuable Player and Coach’s Award Winners included:
Men’s Tennis—MVP Justin Fleegle, Coach’s Award Matt Hample;
Women’s Tennis—MVP Katie Morris, Coach’s Award Laura Stahli;
Softball—MVP Jalisa Westover, Coach’s Award Chelsea Engleholm;
Baseball—MVP Connor Bowie, Coach’s Award Seth Shaffer;
Men’s Cross Country—MVP Bryson Long, Coach’s Award Tim Kestermont;
Women’s Cross Country—MVP Kelsey Molnar, Coach’s Award Nikki Binnie;
Golf—MVP Dylan Link, Coach’s Award Daniela Battisti;
Volleyball–MVP Ashley Pipon, Coach’s Award Brianna Cunningham;
Men’s Soccer–MVP Patrick Chea, Coach’s Award John Ouellette;
Women’s Soccer—MVP Olivia Woodley, Coach’s Award Elizabeth Josephson;
Men’s Basketball—MVP Shawn Greenfield, Coach’s Award Dameon Turner
Women’s Basketball—MVP Lindsy Sammarco. Coach’s Award Ali Maruca; and
Women’s Bowling—MVP Courtney Sable, Coach’s Award Shanice Fauntleroy-Woods.