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College Athletic Report: Simoncelli ties RBI mark

Freshman Eric Simoncelli of Hamburg recorded his 24th RBI, tying the team’s single-season record set by Brent Gibbs in 2010, in D’Youville’s Game Two 8-3 loss to Pitt-Bradford. D’Youville also lost 8-0 in the first game of the doubleheader and finishes 8-21 overall.

Elsewhere locally, Hilbert seniors Chris Hoak of Hamburg, Ryan Ilardi and Garrett Pauly were honored during Senior Day but the Hawks were unable to hold their lead in either of the AMCC games April 23 and fell 12-8 and 16-9 to D’Youville College.

Mackowiak named NEAC Student-Athlete of Week

Kyle Mackowiak was chosen as the NEAC men’s lacrosse Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week April 29. The junior defender scooped up 10 ground balls and caused seven turnovers while only committing one of his own in three games. Hilbert advanced to the NEAC finals before falling to Keuka.

Besides his defensive effort and impressive presence in the back half of the field (six ground balls and three caused turnovers), Mackowiak posted a clutch goal against SUNYIT. His fourth quarter game-tying, unassisted, man-down goal forced overtime against the Wildcats on April 27. The Hawks wound up winning the game.

ECC baseball headed to tourney

The Erie Community College baseball handed Corning CC losses of 27-0 and 11-3 May 6. By sweeping Monday’s Region III doubleheader, the Kats improved to 35-18. The 35 wins are the third-most in a season by ECC during the coaching reign of Joe Bauth. ECC will now advance to the Region III Tournament. The opening round will start Saturday.

In the opener, ECC recorded 24 hits in the five-inning contest. Seventeen Kats recorded hits and 17 also scored. Sophomore Brian Barry of Derby, set the single-season record for runs batted in as he drove in two. Barry’s 64 RBI also lead the NJCAA Division III. In game two, Austin Zakroczemski, a St. Francis High graduate, recorded four hits.

Over three days, ECC split a pair of doubleheaders with 10th-ranked Niagara CCC. On May 2, the Kats used seven extra-base hits to pick up a 12-9 win in the nightcap of a Region III of the Region III game. Barry, who’s a Lake Shore High graduate, hit a two-run homer and finished with four RBI. Nick Caboot of Derby had a pair of doubles, while Blair Lakso of Hamburg picked up the win on the mound. Two days earlier, Barry doubled and hit a three-run homer as ECC picked up an 8-5 Game Two win to break the five-game winning streak of NCCC. ECC’s Vinny Sherman of North Collins had two hits in the opener and Caboot added two in the second game.

McCulle among Hilbert all-conference selections

Seven athletes from Hilbert, led by First Team selection Sean Purtill, were recognized for their contribution to lacrosse program’s most successful season since joining the NEAC in 2012. Fellow junior, Adam McCulle of Angola earned a spot on the Second Team as a defender.

Five Hawks dominated the 12-man Third team. Senior John Pingitore picked up an attack spot, while junior Nick Kieffer earned the face-off specialist position. Senior Ryan Wagner and sophomore Brendan Kane grabbed two of the three midfielders slots and junior Sean Manning was another defender to help carry the Hawks to their strongest season yet.

Purtill, a three-peat NEAC Offensive Player of the Week selection, finished the regular season as the NEAC point leader with 73, including 38 goals. Pingitore and Kane finished with 29 points each as midfielders. Because he was sidelined with an early season injury, Wagner only competed in six games but was still was able to net 13 scores. Kieffer led the league by winning .629 percent of his face-offs and earned his first post-season honor.

McCulle and Manning worked with their fellow defenders to take away shooting angles, defend penetration and to transition the ball to their offense. Even though Hilbert played one more game in 2013 than in 2012, the Hawks limited their opponents to 15 fewer goals and 28 fewer shots this season.

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