Skip to navigation Skip to content Skip to footer

2018 Athlete Recognition Night

Dunmore, PA – On May 3, 2018, Penn State Scranton's Athletic Department hosted their Annual Athlete Recognition Night to highlight and honor the Penn State Scranton student-athletes for their performance, dedication and hard work in the classroom and in their respective sports throughout the year. The night kicked off with the presentation of the academic awards from both the PSUAC and USCAA given to the student-athletes who maintained at least a 3.0 GPA or higher in their seasons of play, presented by Sara Rinkunas, Coordinator of Athletic Programs. The PSUAC Academic All-Conference (3.0 GPA or higher) team for each team are:

Volleyball:

Jessica Berger, freshman

Ashley Fuentez, senior

Jayonna Geffrand, freshman

Soccer:

Summer Czekaj, freshman

Thomas Epsom, freshman

Matthew Hayner, junior

Jacob Karnick, freshman

Thomas Miller, freshman

Cossette Orehek, sophomore

Omar Paramo, sophomore

Jacob Tinklepaugh, freshman

Aron Tregaskis, freshman

Women's Cross Country:

Leah Byman, freshman

Alexis Karayanis, sophomore

Alicia Kasson, sophomore

Ashley Reyes, freshman

Cheyenne Tussel, junior

Hannah Woody, senior

Men's Cross Country:

Kyle Franceski, junior

Robert Murphy, sophomore

Jimmesh Patel, sophomore

Women's Basketball:

Jessica Berger, freshman

Mikaela Brutico, senior

Monique Hicks, sophomore

Rachel Lewis, freshman

Sara Moss, senior

Men's Basketball:

Brody Dial, junior

Thomas Gonzales, sophomore

Ty Herbert, sophomore

Jeff Panetti, junior

Softball:

Jessica Duff, sophomore

Gabrielle Glover, freshman

Gabrielle Percival, freshman

Myranda Polcha, senior

Britney Reinhart, freshman

Kelsey Sarafinko, junior

Emily Scarfo, freshman

Lauren Sciabbarrasi, freshman

Yasmine Smith, freshman

Abby Turner, freshman

Baseball:

John Abda, freshman

Vidal Baez, sophomore

RJ Kilmer, freshman

Noah Novotka, freshman

Brett Seidita, junior

Stephen Wegener, freshman

The USCAA National All-Academic (3.5 GPA or higher, 24 total passed credits) team for each team are:

Volleyball:

Ashley Fuentez, senior

Soccer:

Matthew Hayner, junior

Women's Cross Country:

Alicia Kasson, sophomore

Alexis Karayanis, sophomore

Hannah Woody, senior

Men's Cross Country:

Kyle Franceski, junior

Robert Murphy, sophomore

Women's Basketball:

Mikaela Brutico, senior

Men's Basketball:

Thomas Gonzales, sophomore

Jeff Panetti, junior

Softball:

Jessica Duff, sophomore

Britney Reinhart, freshman

Lauren Sciabbarrasi, freshman

The program continued with the presentation of the PSUAC athletic awards, given to the student-athletes nominated by their coaches and voted on by the coaches in the conference.

First team All-Conference:

Men's Cross Country: Matthew Murray, sophomore, men's individual champion

Women's Cross Country: Alicia Kasson, sophomore

Second team All-Conference:

Soccer: James Cole, senior

Women's Cross Country: Cheyenne Tussel, junior

Women's Cross Country: Alexis Karayanis, sophomore

Honorable Mention:

Soccer: Brandon Hall, sophomore

Men's Basketball: Jeff "Benji" Griffin, senior

Women's Basketball: Jessica Berger, freshman

This year the PSUAC instituted a new sportsmanship award in honor of former PSUAC Comissioner John Fritz. Each campus nominates one student-athlete per team that demonstrates excellent sportsmanship, while displaying ethical, appropriate, polite and fair behavior while participating in events for Penn State University and the PSUAC. This year's recipients for each team are:

Volleyball: Jessica Berger, freshman

Soccer: Jacob Tinklepaugh, freshman

Women's Basketball: Rachel Lewis, freshman

Men's Basketball: Thomas Gonzales, sophomore

Softball: Britney Reinhart, freshman

Baseball: Kenny Paltzer, freshman

Following the academic and athletic awards the program shifted to individual and special awards. The first special award given out went to senior, guard Jeff "Benji" Griffin from the Men's Basketball team who received his 1,000-point basketball for becoming the latest member of the exclusive 1,000-point club following the conclusion of his senior season. Griffin reached this career milestone in his last game of his career on the road at Penn State Greater Allegheny early in the first half.

Jeff Mallas, Athletic Director, presented the Kelly Ann Sledzinski Memorial Award given annually to a female student-athlete who excels both academically and athletically while demonstrating pride and integrity. The award is presented, in remembrance of former three sport student-athlete Kelly Ann Sledzinski, an exemplary student-athlete who conveyed strength, courage and honor during her time at Penn State. This year's recipient of the Kelly Ann Sledzinski Memorial Award is freshman, guard Jessica Berger from the Women's Basketball team.

Mar Tsakonas, Assistant Softball Coach and Athletic Department Administrative Assistant, presented the Larry Ellett Memorial Award, also given to a female student-athlete who excels both academically and athletically while demonstrating pride and integrity. The Larry Ellett Memorial Award is presented annually in honor of late Assistant Softball and Volleyball coach Larry Ellett. This year's recipient is junior, shortstop Kelsey Sarafinko from the Softball team. Both recipients of our special awards excelled as one of the top athletes on their respective teams and maintained a 3.0 GPA while working hard to lead their teams on the court and field while encompassing the true meaning of these awards.

Each year the Athletic Department sets aside a part of the program to thank and appreciate the graduating seniors from each team for their hard work, dedication to their sport and their accomplishments throughout their careers at Penn State Scranton. This year's seniors recognized were:

Ashley Fuentez, Volleyball, 4 years

James Cole, Men's Soccer, 3 years

Hannah Woody, Women's Cross Country, 2 years

Sara Moss, Women's Basketball, 4 years

Mikaela Brutico, Women's Basketball, 4 years

Molly Burke, Women's Basketbaall, 3 years

Angelia Migliaccio, Cheerleading, 2 years

Jeff "Benji" Griffin, Men's Basketball, 4 years

Myranda Polcha, Softball, 4 years

The night wrapped up with Jeff Mallas introducing the latest inductee to the Penn State Scranton Athletics Wall of Fame. Each year the department selects a former member of the Penn State Scranton Athletics staff, who while serving the university left a stamp and legacy on Penn State Scranton Athletics history. The newest inductee for 2018 is Mike Adballa, former Men's Basketball coach and longtime faculty member on campus. Mike was the founder of the Men's Basketball program in 1967 and served as the first head coach of the team from 1967-1983. Coach Abdalla briefly addressed the student-athletes and coaches present upon becoming just the third inductee into the Wall of Fame joining former Athletic Director, coach and kinesiology instructor, Joe Simoncelli and former Men's Basketball coach, Joe Walsh.