PHS grads excel at next level
Several Parkland High School graduates played on college teams last fall.
The Northwestern University field hockey team once again qualified for the Big Ten tournament, but unfortunately came up short against Maryland. One of the main pieces in that team was senior defender Kelley Stump, who played in all of the Wildcats’ games and made 17 starts. She scored twice this past season and finishes her career with 12 goals and four assists.
In 53 sets played, Penn State University volleyball player Taylor Krause posted 49 digs in helping the Nittany Lions advance to the NCAA Regional Tournament. PSU finished the season 28-6 overall (15-5 in conference).
The history continues to pile up for the East Stroudsburg University women’s soccer team. The Warriors captured their first NCAA Division II Atlantic Region championship in the fall after winning the PSAC Tournament. Both games came against Edinboro. Junior back Hannah Gombos was a part of the Warriors’ success in 2015, as she posted two goals and two assists in 21 starts. She also helped that defensive unit allow just 24 goals on the season.
Jess Wetherhold, a junior midfielder on the DeSales University women’s soccer team, played and started in 15 of the team’s 20 games in the fall. She tallied a team-high eight assists (now 17 for her career, which ties a school record with two others) for a Bulldogs team that went 14-6 and won the MAC Freedom Conference Tournament. She also scored six goals (third on team) and recorded 16 shots on goal despite missing time on the field. In her third season, Wetherhold was named to the NSCAA Mid-Atlantic All-Region Third Team and the MAC Freedom All-Conference First Team.
West Chester junior Callie Krajcir, a defensive specialist, tallied 331 kills (second on team) and 27 service aces (third on team). She also posted a solid 2.78 digs-per-set mark in the 119 sets she played in 2015. The Golden Rams finished the year at 26-11 and advanced to the NCAA II Tournament.
Canisius College’s Lauren Siebert capped a stellar career on the volleyball court this past season. In helping the Golden Griffins go 9-9 in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC), Siebert posted 270 kills, 2.45 kills-per-set, 74 blocks and 25 digs in her senior season in 110 sets. She has career totals of 749 kills, 261 blocks and a .301 hitting percentage (fourth in program history), while garnering a spot on the All-MAAC Conference First Team.
Senior outside hitter Erin Hillman (564 total attacks, 224 kills, 129 digs and 25 blocks) and junior outside hitter Alicia Weigel (864 total attacks, 309 kills, 104 digs, 56 blocks) produced a solid one-two punch for the Eastern University women’s volleyball team. The Eagles finished the season 29-8, went unbeaten in the MAC Freedom Conference, and won the tournament championship. Weigel earned an honorable mention selection on the American Volleyball Coaches Association team, an All-Mid-Altantic Region team choice, and an All-MAC Freedom Conference Second Team selection.
Bloomsburg University senior Chrissy Hollan is one of the unquestioned leaders on the Huskies’ defensive unit. While she did score four goals this year, her biggest contributions came on defense, where Bloom (11-7-1 overall, 9-6-1 in PSAC) allowed just 22 goals in the 19 games she played. Hollan earned a number of accolades in her final season: NSCAA All-Region Second Team, First Team All-Atlantic Region choice by the NCAA Division II Conference Commissioners’ Association (CCA), CoSIDA Academic All-American, and All-PSAC First Team.
Eli Redmond, a sophomore wide receiver at Moravian, posted yet another eye-opening season at the collegiate ranks. He ran for 429 yards and seven touchdowns on 87 carries in 2015, while adding 144 yards and two more scores in the receiving game. He showed his versatility as the Greyhounds’ top kick returner. He was a Centennial Conference First Team choice. Former Trojans Steve Ewald and Nick Zambelli both had interceptions as freshmen. Ewald started every game at linebacker and recorded 37 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss and five sacks, while Zambelli started every game at defensive back and tallied 37 tackles. Sophomore Dominic Rossetti played in every game at linebacker and totaled 15 tackles. Offensive guard Shane Fisher started in eight games for the Hounds.
Jarel Elder was West Chester’s top option out of the backfield this past football season. The former Trojan carried the ball 119 times for 589 yards and five touchdowns, all team-highs for the Rams. He was also their top kick returner with 25 returns for 588 yards. Brother Jarey Elder, a freshman defensive back, is also on the team. Sophomore offensive guard Michael Unger also played for West Chester last fall.
Senior offensive lineman Eric Burleson finished his career at East Stroudsburg with a memorable 2015 season. Burleson helped the Warriors offense average 40 points and close to 500 yards per game.
Lafayette freshman kicker Jacob Bissell earned an All-Patriot League Second Team selection after his impressive first season. He connected on eight of his 14 field goals, with his season and career-long from 47 yards deep. He made all 18 of his extra point attempts for the Leopards and was equally impressive on kickoffs with nine kickoffs.
Junior linebacker Tanner Stengel capped an impressive season last month at Wilkes University. He recorded 70 solo tackles (129 total), 15 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks, all team-highs for the Colonels. He also forced one fumble and recovered another.
If you know of other fall sports college athletes from the Parkland area that deserve recognition, please email their name, school and sport to Todd Kress at firstname.lastname@example.org.