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High School Recruiting

Penn-Trafford's Coll, Marasti make college decisions

Doug Gulasy
| Tuesday, April 22, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
Penn-Trafford seniors (front, from left) Ryan Marasti and Deanna Coll pose after making their college commitments official on April 16, 2014, in the Penn-Trafford High School guidance office. In back, from left, are Penn-Trafford athletic director Kerry Hetrick; Marasti's parents, Kendall and Joe; Coll's younger brother, Alec; and Penn-Trafford athletic secretary Renee Martz.
Doug Gulasy | Penn-Trafford Star
Penn-Trafford seniors (front, from left) Ryan Marasti and Deanna Coll pose after making their college commitments official on April 16, 2014, in the Penn-Trafford High School guidance office. In back, from left, are Penn-Trafford athletic director Kerry Hetrick; Marasti's parents, Kendall and Joe; Coll's younger brother, Alec; and Penn-Trafford athletic secretary Renee Martz.

Penn-Trafford seniors Deanna Coll and Ryan Marasti both faced difficult choices when making their decisions about where they wanted to continue their athletic careers.

Marasti, a football and baseball player at Penn-Trafford, needed to decide which sport to pursue in college, while Coll, a girls volleyball player, faced the choice of whether to accept a scholarship to one school or walk on elsewhere.

Both athletes recently made their picks final, with Marasti signing to play baseball at Heidelberg and Coll opting to walk on as a volleyball player at Mercyhurst.

“I'm really excited,” Marasti said. “I cannot wait for my college career to begin.”

“I'm just glad I finally made a choice,” Coll said.

Marasti said he received interest for both baseball and football but decided in December to focus his recruitment on baseball because it was his dream to play the sport in college. After receiving interest from a number of schools, Marasti narrowed his choices to Washington & Jefferson and Heidelberg.

“Both had their differences, and both had their perks and cons,” Marasti said. “Heidelberg was a little cheaper, and I just liked the campus and overall atmosphere better.”

Heidelberg, a Division III university located in Tiffin, Ohio, in the western portion of the state, is a member of the Ohio Athletic Conference. The Student Princes currently lead the OAC and are ranked 10th in the country by www.d3baseball.com.

“I love their program,” Marasti said. “They have a really solid program. I really like what I see.”

Marasti, who can play positions both in the infield and outfield, is sitting out this baseball season after undergoing wrist surgery after football season.

“It is rough watching it from the sidelines with it being my senior year and all,” he said. “Hopefully, my injury will be done with by summer ball, and obviously I'll be able to continue for the next four years.”

Coll, a middle hitter at Penn-Trafford, said her recruitment process began two years ago.

“It's just been emailing coaches and calling them and asking them to come watch me play at tournaments and games,” she said. “It's been pretty excruciating because I didn't really know what I wanted until this year. ... Everything that I wanted was at Mercyhurst. They had everything I wanted academically, any interest I could ever want. It's right by Erie, and it's right by the lake, so I really liked that.”

Coll joined the Pittsburgh Elite Volleyball club recently, and she said the club helped in her recruitment process.

She received interest from several schools and got a scholarship offer from West Virginia Wesleyan, but she ultimately decided to walk on at Mercyhurst because of the overall fit.

“I'm willing to work hard and become a starter if I can,” she said. “As much as it takes, I want to get to that point.”

Mercyhurst competes in the Pennsylvania State Athletics Conference. The Lakers finished 18-14 overall in 2013.

“It's a really nice family atmosphere because the coaches are husband and wife, and they have their kids around all the time,” Coll said. “They're really unique, and they have a unique coaching style as well. It's different from other coaches because they want to work with you instead of just saying, ‘This is my way.'”

Doug Gulasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-388-5830, via email at dgulasy@tribweb.com or via Twitter @dgulasy_Trib.

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