Penn College Archery Team Rebuilding
Without question, the Pennsylvania College of Technology archery team faces more than one challenge this season.
First, it must replace Ryan Romberger, a male compound shooter from Pillow who was a three-time All-American. Then there is Ryan Benny of Burnham, who earned All-American honors two years ago and won the state men's compound title a year ago. And, finally, Karen Morse of Canton, who won the state women's indoor compound title last year with a record 562 points.
"There are a lot of big shoes to fill this year, especially in the male compound," coach Chad Karstetter said. "It's going to be a rebuilding year for us because we have a lot of freshmen," the coach, who is entering his sixth season, continued.
Penn College opens its season Saturday at the state indoor championships in Taylor.
One definite ace is returning junior Michelle Wright (Kendall, N.Y.) who was named an All-American two years ago in women's compound. "Lately, she's been shooting exceptionally well. If she continues to shoot the way she is shooting now, I can see her being at the top of her class," Karstetter said.
Joining Wright on the women's compound team are Sarah Wilson, a junior from Tyrone who competed on the recurve team last year, and freshmen Jessica Larson (Montoursville) and Lindsey Fackler (Halifax).
Neither Larson nor Fackler have shot competitively before, but that doesn't bother Karstetter.
"I actually kind of prefer sometimes that they don't have any bad habits. I can show them what I want them to do. People that have no idea usually pick it up (shooting a bow) quicker than the ones who think they know how to do it," the coach said.
"With Michelle leading the team, as the year goes on they're going to gradually get better and will be able to compete by the time we get to nationals in May," Karstetter said.
On the male recurve team are senior Jason Kornbau (Red Lion), junior Chris Adams (Pen Argyl) and freshman Mark Lambert (Venus).
"Kornbau and Adams return and they know what's up and what to do. I think they'll make a pretty good threesome," the coach said.
Members of the male compound squad are junior Nate Potteiger (Middletown), sophomores Shawn Tappen (Wellsville) and Ryan Rambo (Millville) and freshmen Chris Keiper (Sidman) and Brock Smith (Brookville).
"Potteiger and Tappen return, and some of the new guys have been practicing really hard because they know what they're up against. If this is not their year, next year definitely will be," Karstetter forecast.
Heading into this weekend's event, Karstetter said, "I really have no high expectations. I do believe we're going to do pretty good. This will be the first tournament for a lot of them.
"I'm looking forward to getting the year started and seeing how a couple of these guys react under the pressure that competition puts on you," Karstetter added. "We'll get everything under our belts with this first one; then get ready for the next one."
Complete rosters and season schedules are available on the college's Athletics Web site.