Tyler Matakevich leads 7 Owls named to all-AAC 1st team

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Tyler Matakevich leads 7 Owls named to all-AAC 1st team

A Temple football season full of accolades added a few more on Wednesday.

Led by star senior linebacker Tyler Matakevich, seven Owls earned first-team all-American Athletic Conference honors. No team in the conference had more players named.

Matakevich, who was also named the AAC Defensive Player of the Year, was a unanimous first-team selection, and it’s easy to see why. He’s tied for 13th in the nation with 118 total tackles, tied for 13th with five interceptions and was named the conference’s defensive player of the week four times. He also recently became the seventh player in Football Bowl Subdivision history to record 100 or more tackles in each of his four collegiate seasons.

In a release, Matakevich said, “It's quite an honor. I said it before and it's no different now. I'm able to make plays because my coaches put me in the right position and my teammates take on blockers to free me up. I'm prouder that Temple had more all-conference selections than any single award I have received."

Other defenders to earn first-team honors included seniors defensive tackle Matt Ioannidis, defensive end Nate D. Smith and safety Alex Wells.

Junior running back Jahad Thomas led the way among the three offensive first-team selections.

Thomas has been the workhorse of the Owls’ offensive attack this year with 1,188 rushing yards and 17 rushing touchdowns, both of which rank second in the conference. He also has a receiving touchdown and kickoff return touchdown to bring his season total to 19 touchdowns.

Seniors center Kyle Friend and right tackle Eric Lofton were the other two Owls named to the first team.

In addition, junior left tackle Dion Dawkins and sophomore defensive back Sean Chandler earned all-conference second-team honors while redshirt junior defensive end Hasson Reddick was an all-conference honorable selection.

All told, 10 Owls received all-conference honors.

The No. 22 Owls (10-2) will try to add another accolade in the form of the AAC championship when they travel to Houston on Saturday to face the No. 19 Cougars (11-1) in the inaugural conference title game. Kickoff is slated for noon.

West Chester baseball wins Atlantic Regional, moves on to national championship tourney

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Photo credit: Ed Mailliard

West Chester baseball wins Atlantic Regional, moves on to national championship tourney

West Chester University baseball is moving on to the 2017 NCAA National Championships.

The Golden Rams won the Division II Atlantic Regional Final on Monday with a 12-7 decision over Winston-Salem State at Russell Diethrick Park.

Sophomore first baseman Jared Melone reached base six times, going 5 for 5 with a walk and four RBIs, while shortstop Nick Ward scored four runs and collected three hits to help West Chester capture its fourth regional title in program history.

Senior right-hander Josh McClain picked up the win in relief with three innings of one-run ball, as the Golden Rams scored five in the eighth inning to win their first regional crown since 2012, the year they won the national championship. 

West Chester is now 40-11 overall and will open national championship tournament play on Saturday at 3 p.m. against North Georgia in Grand Prairie, Texas.

For more details, see below.

Mohamed Bamba picks Texas over Duke, Kentucky

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Mohamed Bamba picks Texas over Duke, Kentucky

AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas basketball coach Shaka Smart has won the recruiting sweepstakes for highly-ranked forward Mohamed Bamba.

The 6-foot-11 Bamba signed with the Longhorns on Thursday, picking Texas over Duke, Kentucky, Michigan and Harvard. Bamba is ranked by national recruiting services as one of the top players in the country and already projected by some as an early 2018 NBA draft pick.

Signing Bamba is a huge boost for Smart after a 22-loss season, Texas' worst in more than 30 years. Freshman center Jarrett Allen has entered this year's NBA draft and freshman guard Andrew Jones is still considering whether to return to Texas.

Bamba average 12.8 points, 9.3 rebounds and 3.4 blocks as a high school senior in Westtown, Pennsylvania, outside Philadelphia, and was a McDonald's All-American.