Conyngham, Pa. - Penn State Hazleton wrapped up the 2015-16 academic year with the 36th annual student-athlete awards banquet on Thursday, April 28th at the Valley Country Club. Over 60 student-athletes and coaches were honored for their athletic and academic achievements, but none greater than the induction of women's basketball senior Alexis Daly (New Albany, Pa.) and the late coach of women's softball Marty Mrozinski into the Pennsylvania State University High Acres Sports Hall of Fame.
The evening began with a welcome from Director of Athletics Ryan Ehrie and the introduction of the student-athlete of the year awards, in recognition of the top male and female student-athlete's who have had a tremendous impact on their respective teams and excelled in their academic achievement. This year's recipients were junior Kyle Venditti (Berwick, Pa.) of men's soccer, and sophomore Kayla Rhome (Marysville, Pa.) of women's softball.
Kyle Venditti: Penn State Hazleton Male Student Athlete of the Year
Venditti is a Penn State University Athletic Conference Academic All-Conference award winner and helped lead men's soccer to a berth in the PSUAC playoffs with an appearance in the semi-final round. The junior topped all Hazleton scorers with 19 goals in 2015 and led the PSUAC with 13 assists, earning an honorable mention from the United States Collegiate Athletic Association in the process.
Kayla Rhome: Penn State Hazleton Female Student Athlete of the Year
Rhome is USCAA National All-Academic Team member who's played an integral part in earning a number two seed for women's softball in the upcoming PSUAC postseason tournament. The sophomore pitcher tossed two no-hitters for the Lady Lions this season, leading the PSUAC in earned run average, strikeouts and wins.
Pennsylvania State University High Acres Sports Hall of Fame
The evening's festivities concluded with the first inductions into the High Acres Sports Hall of Fame since 2012. Former women's basketball assistant coach Patrice Lombard conducted the honors for four-time USCAA All-American Alexis Daly, followed by interim head softball coach Rich Lipinski presenting the honors for Marty Mrozinski to the late coach's wife, daughters and grandchildren.
Alexis Daly: Women's Basketball Hall of Fame Inductee
Daly's stoic career began in the fall of 2012, having not been specifically recruited to play basketball at the campus. She immediately made an impact on the program earning PSUAC All-Conference honors and a first team selection to the USCAA All-American team. Over the next two years Daly continued to dominate the stat columns and in 2014 became just the third Lady Lion to reach the 1,000 point milestone. Daly drove her squad to the program's first PSUAC championship appearance and a USCAA national tournament berth in 2015, only to repeat the feat as a senior. In 2015 she became the school's all-time leading scorer and in her final season, Daly pulled in her 1,000 career rebound, becoming just the second player in school history to achieve 1,000 career mark in both points and rebounds.
By the end of her tenure, Daly became perhaps the most decorated student-athlete in campus history. The forward was named a PSUAC All-Conference player and a 1st team USCAA All-American in each of her four seasons. In her final two years, Daly was named the PSUAC's player of the year, and as a senior was named player of the year nationally by the USCAA. She ends her career with an astounding 1,772 points along with 1,049 rebounds, 171 steals, and 131 blocked shots.
Marty Mrozinski: Softball and Women's Basketball Coach Hall of Fame Inductee
Marty Mrozinski served at the helm of the Penn State Hazleton's women's basketball team from 2006-2010 and renowned around the commonwealth as the head coach of Lady Lion's softball from 2004 until his passing in November of 2015. To his players, Mrozinski was more than just a coach. His impact on students reached far beyond the playing field, holding players to high academic standards and instilling leadership qualities to make players as successful in life as they were on the playing field.
During his 12 years as head softball coach, Mrozinski was named coach of the year by the PSUAC four times, an award voted on by colleagues in the PSUAC recognizing team achievement and coaching performance. He took his teams to 10 straight Penn State University Athletic Conference final four appearances, winning PSUAC championships in 2008 and 2010, finishing his coaching career with 163 wins and 65 losses in the PSUAC. His squads earned three berths in the USCAA national tournament finishing sixth in the country in 2010 and 2015. On April 21, 2014 Mrozinski tallied his 200th career win and ended his career as the all-time winningest softball coach in Penn State Hazleton history with 236 victories.
2015-16 Penn State Hazleton Student-Athlete Award Recipients
Golf - 3rd Place PSUAC tournament finish
PSUAC Academic All-Conference: Senior Brandon Haydt (Hobbie, Pa.), sophomore Garrett Madison (Canadensis, Pa.), sophomore Ty Morzilla (Berwick, Pa.), freshman Katie Behnert (Montandon, Pa.)
USCAA National All-Academic Team: Garrett Madison, Ty Morzilla
PSUAC All-Conference: Garrett Madison, Ty Morzilla
2015 USCAA Women's Golf National Champion: Katie Behnert
Soccer - PSUAC Playoff Semi-finalist
PSUAC Academic All-Conference: Sophomore James Fisher (Glen Allen, Va.), sophomore Ryan Hanrahan (Clifton Heights, Pa.), senior Ryan Lieb (Yardley, Pa.), sophomore Michael Principe (Jim Thorpe, Pa.), sophomore Steven Principe (Jim Thorpe, Pa.), freshman Bernardo Becerra (Peach Bottom, Pa.), Julianne Ernest (Danville, Pa.), freshman Nicole Manges (Clovis, Nm), sophomore Ben Pasukinis (Benton, Pa.), junior Kyle Venditti (Berwick, Pa.), freshman Tyler Wyllie (Benton, Pa.), freshman Austin Yaletchko (Nottingham, Pa.), sophomore Arielle Zahodnick (Girardville, Pa.)
PSUAC All-Conference: 1st team - Steven Principe, Kyle Venditti 2nd team - James Fisher, Tyler Wyllie
USCAA National All-Academic Team: James Fisher, Michael Principe, Arielle Zahodnick
USCAA All-American: Kyle Venditti honorable mention
PSUAC Academic All-Conference: Senior Nieves Alonzo (Hazleton, Pa.), junior Tina Beiland (Philadelphia, Pa.), sophomore Jessenia Wright (Brooklyn, Ny.), freshman Tateyana Frazier (Brooklyn, Ny.), sophomore Paola Kessel (Rockville, Md.), sophomore Andriana Nunez (Brooklyn, Ny.), sophomore Usgal Zananbal (Ulaanbaatar, Mng.), junior Miranda Dunne (Montrose, Pa.)
PSUAC All-Conference: Tina Beiland honorable mention
USCAA National All-Academic Team: Jessenia Wright
PSUAC Academic All-Conference: Senior Richard Hobbs (Central Islip, Ny.), sophomore Matt Manbeck (Girardville, Pa.), freshman Brian Miller (Barnesville, Pa.)
PSUAC All-Conference: Sophomore Royce Brathwaite (Pocono Summit, Pa.) honorable mention, sophomore Jordan Singletary (Houston, Tx.) 2nd team
USCAA All-American: Jordan Singletary honorable mention
Women's Basketball - 2nd Place PSUAC - USCAA National Qualifier
PSUAC Academic All-Conference: Senior Alexis Daly (New Albany, Pa.), sophomore Kamryn Dodd (Stevensville, Md.), sophomore Alison Vincent (Ashville, Pa.), freshman Kassie Ferdinand (Mountain Top, Pa.), freshman Ijonana Laster (Niagara Falls, Ny.), freshman McKenzie Prutsman (Jasper, Ny.)
PSUAC All-Conference: Alexis Daly 1st team, McKenzie Prutsman 2nd team
2016 PSUAC Coach of the Year: Paul Appel
2016 PSUAC Player of the Year: Alexis Daly
2016 PSUAC Newcomer of the Year: Mckenzie Prutsman
USCAA National All-Academic Team: Kamryn Dodd
USCAA All-American: Alexis Daly 1st team McKenzie Prutsman honorable mention
2016 USCAA Player of the Year: Alexis Daly
PSUAC Academic All-Conference: Freshman Adrian Corbin (Brooklyn, Ny.), freshman Austin Felter (Susquehanna, Pa.), freshman Daniel Gilligan (Charlton, Ma.), junior Aaron Glass (Shippensburg, Pa.), sophomore Charles Karchner (Hazleton, Pa.), sophomore max Mott (Harrisburg, Pa.), sophomore Tyler Myers (Nanticoke, Pa.), freshman Eric Varner (Berwick, Pa.), freshman Paul Jay Wiegand (Berwick, Pa.), sophomore Charles Ziegmont (Tallahassee, Fl.)
PSUAC and USCAA Season Awards to be announced
Softball - No. 2 seed PSUAC Postseason Tournament
PSUAC Academic All-Conference: Freshman Noelle Bergerstock (Muncy, Pa.), sophomore Britani Esser (Willingboro, Nj.), junior Leanne Lagowski (Wrightsville, Pa.), freshman Moriah Lynn (Berwick, Pa.), sophomore Kayla Rhome (Marysville, Pa.), freshman Shelby Jolliff (Dunkirk, Oh.), sophomore Sara Stauffer (Mifflinburg, Pa.), freshman Samantha Varela (Hazleton, Pa.), freshman Kayla Wirth (Bethlehem, Pa.)
USCAA National All-Academic Team: Kayla Rhome, Sara Stauffer
PSUAC and USCAA Season Awards to be announced
PSUAC Academic All-Conference: Andrew Adams, Drew Edsell, sophomore Victoria Hendershot (Nazareth, Pa.), sophomore Haley Koppenhaver (Sunbury, Pa.), sophomore Dixie McCoy (Watsontown, Pa.), sophomore Alexandria Reilly (Philadelphia, Pa.), sophomore Jamileth Sanchez (Clifton, Nj.), freshman Jasmin Smith (Woodbury, Nj.)