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Last updated: October 07. 2013 11:24PM - 1256 Views
BILL ARSENAULT For The Times Leader



Linebacker Jake Myers has 40 tackles this season for the Mansfield sprint football team.
Linebacker Jake Myers has 40 tackles this season for the Mansfield sprint football team.
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Linebacker Jake Myers is having a great senior season playing for the Mansfield sprint football team.


Myers (Nanticoke) leads the 1-3 Mountaineers in tackles with 40. He also has a forced fumble and has two pass breakups. He had a game-high 15 tackles in a 41-0 loss to powerful Navy. A two-time Collegiate Sprint Football League second team selection, Myers entered this season with 148 tackles, including 65 solos.


“Jake dedicated himself to come back and assert himself as a defensive force in our league,” head coach Graham Johnson said. “He is one of our four captains and is the vocal leader of the group. He works hard both on the field and off.”


The coach believes that Myers is a great role model for the younger players on the team.


“Jake pushes and demands effort out of his teammates,” Johnson said. “He works hard in the weight room. He expects much of his teammates while demanding more of himself.”


Myers is also a key performer on special teams.


“Jake is always ready to step up whenever and wherever we need him to,” the coach said.


SOKACH TOUGH IN GOAL – Carly Sokach has come up big as the goalkeeper for the Penn field hockey team. The 5-foot-4 junior from West Pittston (Wyoming Seminary) has started every game in front of the net for the Quakers, who are 7-2 overall and 3-0 in the Ivy League.


Sokach was recently named the league’s Defensive Player of the Week after recording 12 saves in a 1-0 victory over Harvard. It was her third double-figure save game of the season. She had two saves in a 5-4 triumph over Dartmouth last Sunday. She has given up 21 goals and has 64 saves and two shutouts.


“Carly has worked tirelessly through pain, injury and a rigorous academic schedule and has blossomed as a leader on defense,” coach Colleen Fink said. “When she makes a great play, she helps the team’s momentum and allows them to play with more calculated risk and confidence.”


Senior Sunny Stirewalt is also a key performer for the squad. The forward from Shavertown (Wyoming Seminary) had her first goal of the season in the Dartmouth victory.


“Sunny has been a constant threat on our offensive line for four years,” Fink said. “She contributes in attacking corners and has a competitive spirit.”


GOOD MOVE FOR CAMPBELL – Sophomore Brian Campbell (Hazleton Area) figured to be a backup running back with the Lycoming football team this fall. Instead, he’s playing linebacker for the Warriors, who are 4-1 and have won four straight.


“We had some injuries at linebacker and need to create some depth at that position,” coach Mike Clark said. “Brian was one of the first guys that came to mind – mostly because of how well he played for us as a freshman on the kickoff team.”


It was a tough decision for the coach to make.


“We really didn’t want to lose him on offense, but he was an ideal candidate,” Clark said. “Needless to say, he has been great at his new spot and we think he has a chance to be a very good linebacker for us the next couple of seasons.”


ROLLMAN DOING THE JOB – Senior Kristie Rollman (Wyoming Valley West) has been outstanding in the goal for the Mansfield field hockey team. She has given up 28 goals in nine games and has 140 saves. She had 27 saves in a 5-1 loss to Shippensburg and entered this season with 272 saves in 38 games, 24 starts for the Mountaineers.


“Kristie came in to preseason in fantastic shape and ready to go,” coach Diane Monkiewicz said. “Her footwork has improved tremendously and she’s staying on her feet more. Her experience has helped in her decision-making and her fitness level and quickness takes care of the rest.”


Junior Jessi Swingle (Lake-Lehman) starts on defense for Mansfield, which is 3-6 on the season. She had her first goal of the season in a 2-1 loss to No. 7-ranked Bloomsburg last Saturday and leads the team in defensive saves with eight.


“Jessi is an explosive player whose confidence and decision-making with the ball have come full circle,” Monkiewicz said. “She is a very smart player who reads the field well and her speed and ability to anticipate makes her an offensive threat as well. She was chosen to be a captain by her teammates and is filling that role very well.”


DUO HELPING HUSKIES – The Bloomsburg football team is 5-0, and junior Tomas Cabrera and senior Brian Clarke are solid performers with the team. Both are former Hanover Area athletes.


Cabrera, a transfer from Temple, is starting at defensive back for the Huskies. The 6-foot-two, 205-pounder has 23 tackles and three interceptions. He was named PSAC Defensive Player of the Week after picking up eight tackles, an interception and a fumble recovery in a 47-35 victory over Edinboro.


“Tomas has added a lot of athleticism and production to our secondary,” coach Paul Darragh said. “He can play all facets of the game which gets him on the field even more. He’s made our secondary a little more stable.”


Clarke, a 6-foot-3, 290-pounder, anchors the offense at right guard, the Huskies averaging over 40 points a game.


“Brian has been a consistently dominant player,” Darragh said. “The fact that he is a physical player sets the tone for everyone else on the offense. He leads by example in the very physical way he plays the game.”


BUKUR TOUGH ON DEFENSE – Sophomore Adrian Bukur (Hazleton Area) has started all 13 games on defense for the Penn Tech men’s soccer team, which is currently 9-4 overall and 4-1 in the Pennsylvania State University Athletic Conference.


“Adrian is a tough, physical defensive-minded player who provides us with strength on the left side of the field,” coach Adam Matter said. “His development has improved greatly and has become dependable on the playing field for a full 90 minutes each game.”


The coach calls Bukur a vocal leader.


“He utilizes his voice to communicate with the rest of the team and provides us leadership,” Matter said. “ I’m working with him on developing into a dominant offense threat from the outside back position.”


SWOBODA LEADS THE WAY – Junior Jessica Swoboda is the leading scorer on the Villanova field hockey team. Swoboda, from Hanover Township (Wyoming Seminary), has five goals and four assists for 14 points with a game-winner. She also has two defensive saves.


“Jessica has a great work ethic and a fantastic attitude,” coach Joanie Milhous said. “She has come into her own this year and she has great natural leadership ability.”


Freshman Kristen Mericle of Shavertown (Wyoming Seminary) is starting for the Wildcats and has picked up three assists.


“Kristen has contributed to this team immediately,” Milhous said. “She is a really steady player who is very disciplined and knows the game.”


A third former Wyoming Seminary athlete is on the team, sophomore Ann Romanowski of West Pittston.


“Ann is recovering from an ACL injury and has just begun to play again,” Milhous said.


HACKETT’S A LEADER – Senior captain Madeleine Hackett of Shavertown (Wyoming Seminary) has helped the Boston University field hockey team post a 7-4 overall record and a 2-1 mark in the Patriot League. A key defender for the Huskies, she’s also picked up a couple of assists.


“We have a young team and as a captain, Madeleine has shown tremendous leadership,” coach Sally Starr said. “And, on the field, she’s having her best season yet.”


And the coach feels that she’s supplying more than defense on the field as well.


“Madeleine has become a well-round player for us,” Starr said.


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