Former Elizabeth Forward pitcher continues to rack up honors with Mercyhurst
College Football Videos
Nearly one month after being drafted in the fifth round of the Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft by the Seattle Mariners, Elizabeth Forward High School graduate and Mercyhurst (Erie) University standout pitcher Dan Altavilla continues to receive postseason accolades.
In early July the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference's sports information directors selected the right-handed pitcher as the 2013-14 Pete Nevins Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Edinboro University track and field All-American Tabitha Bemis was the female award recipient.
The Pete Nevins Scholar-Athletes of the Year are presented to the top student-athletes who have achieved at least a 3.50 cumulative grade point average while competing at an outstanding athletic level. This 24-year-old award was renamed in 2007 to honor East Stroudsburg University's longtime sports information director, Pete Nevins, who passed away earlier that year.
Altavilla, a sports medicine/pre-physical therapy major with a 3.70 grade point average, went 9-1 overall in 2014 with a 1.23 ERA. He led the NCAA Division II with 129 strikeouts to set a new Mercyhurst season record and limited opponents to a .167 batting average.
He broke a 99-year-old PSAC record when he tossed 19 strikeouts in 7.2 innings of work in the opening game of the PSAC Championship against West Chester University.
This past June, Altavilla became the highest Major League Baseball draft pick in program history when he was taken in the fifth round (141st overall) by the Seattle Mariners in the 2014 MLB First Year Players' Draft.
The right-hander became the 15th player in the history of the program to be selected in the draft and the first-ever by the Mariners' organization.
He was also the first NCAA Division II player taken in the 2014 MLB draft. Altavilla also became the highest MLB draft pick from a PSAC school in 19 years.
Altavilla is playing with the Everett (Wash.) AquaSox of the Class A Northwest League.
As of Aug. 12 he had started and appeared in 10 games with a 3-2 overall record and 39 strikeouts in 42 innings pitched.
Altavilla won his last three starts, which included a season-high seven strikeouts in six innings during a 10-7 road victory on July 30 over the Eugene (Ore.) Emeralds. He allowed five hits and three runs.
One week later he limited Spokane (Wash.) to one earned run and six hits in a 7-3 win.
His win streak began with a 3-1 victory over the Boise (Idaho) Hawks on July 25, Altavilla struck out five batters over six innings with one earner and four hits.
Friend takes 3rd at national meet
Uniontown High School graduate Julie Friend finished third in the finals of the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the United States USATF Junior Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Ore., on July 6.
Beginning her sophomore year at California University of Pennsylvania this fall, Friend finished with a time of 10:36.55. Elinor Purrier of New Hampshire and Hope Schmelzle of Purdue took first and second places, respectively. The USATF Junior Outdoor Championships are open to qualifiers age 20 and younger. Friend qualified for this meet in April when she broke her then-school record at the Bison Classic hosted by Bucknell University.
She was one of three NCAA Division II competitors in a 15-women field of runners from all NCAA levels; some elite high school runners also completed.
Friend was selected as the 2014 Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year after winning the conference title in the 5,000-meter run and finishing second in the 3,000-meter steeplechase.
She earned All-American honors by placing sixth in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at last May's NCAA Division II Outdoor National Championships. Friend is also a U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association All-Academic member.
Bruce Wald is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Chicora man charged after entering East Franklin home
- Starkey: Burnett writing incredible final chapter
- Torn thumb ligament puts Pirates’ Harrison on 15-day disabled list
- Pirates notebook: Four players selected for All-Star Game
- Sign ordinance on the horizon in West Kittanning
- New Kensington residents furious over road conditions
- 4th Trimester Bodies tour makes its way to Pittsburgh
- New Kensington to consider bake shop
- Alvarez’s walk-off single lifts Pirates over Padres
- Pair charged with prostitution-related offenses in South Greensburg
- Connellsville kicks off farmers market