The Panthers kicked off their season by splitting games with the Grace College Lancers. The first game they lost 9-3, but won the second 8-4. Sophomore Nate Gotch started the game strong on the mound with a wicked fastball and splitfinger, and sophomore Alan Cheatham threw out two runners attempting to steal a base in his first game as catcher. Unfortunately, the Lancers picked up six unearned runs in the fourth, which gave them the victory. The second game went much better with strong pitching from sophomores Samuel Thomas and Robbie Nickell. Junior Jeff Strickland earned Player of the Game for his three doubles and amazing outfield play.
Swimming and Diving
The season ended on a high note at Liberal Arts, which was hosted in the Crafton pool. On the men’s side, a new school record was set. The 200-meter freestyle relay team, consisting of juniors Will Crowley and Colin Clark and freshmen Andy Furbush and Tyler Loechner, swam a 1:29.05, which now puts them on top of the record boards. The women nabbed eighth place and had a strong showing at the meet. Senior Jenny Bailey swam season best times in her races and finished a solid Principia career.
Track and Field
The indoor season ended well for the men, with several team members chasing school records. Junior Oyintari Aboro was three-hundreths of a second off the school’s 55-meter dash record, and freshman Jake Meier finished the 800-meter run with a 2:00.27 and is looking to set a new record in the near future. On the women’s side, senior Stacey Bird and sophomore Mackenzie Olson have made huge strides in their distance running, and can expect great results in the spring.
The men hosted their first invitational last weekend. Sophomore Paul Sanderude and junior Clayton DeLaney walked away as winners of the number one and two singles slots. At the women’s first invitational, junior Heather Libbe grabbed fifth place in the Flight A group and freshman Zandrea Kaye-Duchesneau took fifth place in Flight C.
In the final men’s game of the season, the team played Westminster in an epic fight to the final buzzer with a score of 111-105. Seniors Sam Douglas, Isaac Swiderski and Stuart Waller all had an exceptional game and contributed to the memorable evening. Together, Douglas and his best friend and co-captain, junior Todd Zimmerman, scored over half the team’s points. Douglas scored a career high 33 points, putting him three away from the 1000-point mark, and Zimmerman had 24 points, an incredible number considering Westminster put their best defender on him full court for most of the game. The women struggled a little at the beginning of their game against Westminster’s energy because it was their senior night. However, the second half was an all-new ball game. The ladies shot 44 percent from the field, played stellar defense and held Westminster scoreless for the last five minutes of the game.