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Robert Morris' Furman South excels on, off ice

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Saturday, Jan. 21, 2012

Robert Morris senior Furman South doesn't dream of playing professional hockey.

Instead, the pre-med/biology major has a 3.94 grade-point average, aspires to become an orthopedic surgeon and spends much of his time away from the rink gobbling up medical knowledge or volunteering.

“I realize I'm not going to make a living playing hockey for the Penguins,” said South, a Sewickley native and Quaker Valley graduate. “So it's definitely just as good, if not better, to get mentioned for other stuff I do.”

On Monday, South became the first RMU men's hockey player to be nominated for the BNY Mellon Wealth Management Hockey Humanitarian Award, handed out at this year's Frozen Four to the college player who is most impactful off the ice. Brianna Delaney was nominated from the RMU women's team.

A year ago, Whitney Pappas became the Colonials' first-ever finalist.

“It's definitely an honor,” said South, who spent the summer interning at Greater Pittsburgh Physical Therapy, monitoring and aiding patients who had recently undergone hip and knee replacements.

South has participated in RMU's Special Olympics bowling fundraiser the past two years and recently joined Allied Students for Health Careers Services, a student-led group that volunteers at various hospitals and health clinics.

He has donated time to youth hockey initiatives, including “Hockey in the Hood,” a program designed to promote the game in the inner city, and even grew a mustache as part of RMU's $4,000 contribution to Movember, the fundraiser geared toward raising awareness for prostate cancer.

“Sometimes it feels like I have a full-time job, but I enjoy it so I can't complain,” South said.
South plays right wing and is on the penalty-kill and power-play units. In 19 games, South has one goal and six points.

“It's pretty cool to get mentioned for stuff you do off the ice,” South said. “But it's not only me; it's good for our whole team because there are other guys doing these community-service things. It's good that we all get attention for it.”

Milestone for Pitt wrestling

The Pitt wrestling team earned its 500th victory with a 27-9 win over visiting Lock Haven last Friday, and two days later the Tasser brothers celebrated. Donnie (157 pounds) and P.J. Tasser (174) scored upsets Sunday, helping the No. 9 Panthers to a 30-3 win over Bloomsburg, stretching their Eastern Wrestling League winning streak to 15 matches. Pitt was scheduled to wrestle Clarion on Friday night.

Two players drafted

Raymon Gaddis, a former defender for the West Virginia men's soccer team, was chosen in the second round (35th overall) of the 2012 Major League Soccer (MLS) SuperDraft by the Philadelphia Union last Thursday. On Tuesday, the Vancouver Whitecaps selected former Penn State defender Mark Fetrow with the second pick of the fourth round in the supplemental draft.

Making the transition

Clarion forward Hannah Heeter ranks second in rebounding average (9.1 per game) in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference and has averaged a double-double over her past six games, with 12.8 points and 11.7 rebounds per contest.

Around the district

Point Park men's basketball coach Jerry Conboy will be inducted today into the Pittsburgh Basketball Club Hall of Fame. Over 20 years, Conboy compiled a 305-241 record and had 14 consecutive NAIA postseason appearances. ... Penn State senior attackman Matthew Mackrides was selected 26th overall Wednesday by the Chesapeake Bayhawks in the Major League Lacrosse Collegiate Draft. ... The Pitt men's 400-meter relay team of Jermaine Lowery, Dontave Cowsette, Brycen Spratling and Micah Murray has the top time in the country this year: 3 minutes, 7.33 seconds, achieved at the Penn State Nittany Lion Challenge last weekend. ... The third-ranked Penn State wrestling team earned its first-ever shutout in a Big Ten dual meet with a 43-0 defeat of Wisconsin on Sunday. … A day earlier, the Grove City women's swim and dive team downed W&J, 151-137, to halt the Presidents' dual-meet winning streak at 23.




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