Bill Byham (WOL File Photo)

Bill Byham (WOL File Photo)

MUSSINA DOES IT! – Yea, I know it. I am about three-four days late with my major headline story but I think I have been Moose hunting from the time he first stepped on a major league pitching mound in Baltimore.Year after year I would keep track of the wins and losses while waiting for the year he would break a 20 win season.

Pitchers have or have had various marks they work toward. Have a winning record, have an earned run average of between three and four, make sure the strike outs are well in front of the walks. If that pitcher is in a full season (162 games) and if he is healthy he might be thinking of a 20 win season. All of those items become very important to the professional pitcher as they become the measures toward the next contract.

Mike Mussina, once established at the major league level, became a winner and accomplished so much while pitching for the Orioles and the Yankees but he never finished a season with 20 wins – until now.

2008 had to be a strange season for Mussina. Last year of his contract with no options on paper. For the first time as a Yankee he is not playing post season ball. The team is under new ownership and a new manager. No one figured he would finished 20-9 and become the ace of the staff.

It was his 18th major league season and as of today, he is, I believe, unemployed with a lot of people asking if this was it.

“I don’t know. If it is, it’s kind of a nice way to go.” was his response to a reporters question after he had pitched six innings of 3-hit ball with no runs allowed in a 6-2 Yankee win over the Boston Red Sox in Fenway park. In so doing he added one more major league history book line that will tell one and all he is the oldest (39) pitcher to win 20 games in a season for the first time.

This finish has make him warm because he had been very close before. He had 19 wins when major league baseball went on strike. That season finished 50 games short and we have to believe Mussina would have won at least one more game that year. In another year he had 19 wins and was winning what was going to be his 20th. He had two outs in the ninth inning and he was holding a one run lead when he was relieved. His relief pitcher came in, fired one pitch that was hit for a game tying home run. The Yankees went on to win the game but he was no longer part of the final decision.


It was announced this week that the two Pa. College of Technology teams are nationally ranked by the United States Collegiate Athletic Association.

This is the very first year that Penn College has been a part of the USCAA and already they have two teams ranked Number 1 and Number 2 in the nation.

In the second USCAA poll released last week the Wildcat women, with a perfect 3-0, start are ranked Number 1 and the Penn College men, who have won their first four games, are ranked Number 2.

USCAA uses a point system to make its weekly ratings. The Penn College men have a rating of 4.50 after defeating Penn State Beaver (3-0), Penn State Abington (1-0), Penn State Scranton (2-0) and Pitt-Bradford (3-1). The Wildcats were tied in second place with Briarcliffe, NY. The Number 1 ranked men’s team is Columbia Union, Md.

The Number 1 rated Lady Wildcats have defeated Penn State Abington 2-0, Elmira College J-vees 5-0 and Columbia Union 4-0 for a rating of 5.00 in the poll. Warren Wilson, N.C. and Robert Morris of Springfield, Ill. are tied for second with a rating of 4.00.

Mike Stanzione, Wildcat AD said, ” In our initial year in the USCAA, it’s extremely exciting for our programs to get this kind of national recognition that I think they have deserved for a long time. It’s a really, really positive thing for the Penn College athletic program.”

THE STREAK IS OVER – With coach Chet Schuman ill at home, the Wildcat golfers headed for a 6 – team invitational at PSU Kensington last week and came home with a record of 187-1. It was the first loss by a Penn College golf team over six years in the PSUAC.
Penn College came in second in the one day event played on the home course of PSU Kensington. The host team posted a low score of 317 while the Wildcats finished second with a team score of 322.

Wildcat athletic director, Mike Stanzione, was the substitute coach for the ailing Schuman and noted that the Wildcat team “worked as hard as they could to preserve the amazing Penn College record over the past five years plus the play in this 2008 season.”

In fact, the last time out, in another invitational, New Kensington and Penn College ended up tied in team scoring so the unbeaten run had a dent in it. This time the New Kensington golf team held Penn College off and won their home invitational plus putting themselves in a position to be top seed at the upcoming PSUAC state championships starting October 5th.

That should be another series of nail biting for Schuman. His teams have won the states the past five years and could pick up number six by besting teams like PSU New Kensington and PSU Mt. Alto.

The Wildcats have one more team event left on the schedule and that will be at PSU Mt. Alto who placed third at New Kensington.

LYCOMING GOES MAC – Mike Clark’s Warriors take a 2-1 non-conference record to Widener University Saturday in opening the 7-week run of MAC Conference play. Gamed time is 1 P.M.

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