Merkle, Oplinger lead track teams at Cal U

Print      Apply

trackoutlook.jpgCalifornia, PA - Senior Alayna Merkle (Chambersburg, PA) and freshman Bill Oplinger (Kiski Area) both had second place finishes at California University (PA)′s early bird meet to open the outdoor season.

Merkle finished second in the 800 meters and sixth in the 1500 meters to lead seven Geneva women finishing in the top 10 in nine events. Oplinger finished second in the triple jump and fifth in the long jump to lead 15 Golden Tornadoes men finishing in the top 10 in 19 events. The meet was not scored as a team event but provided a valuable chance to break into the outdoor season.

"Our plan is to use these first few outdoor meets as tools to evaluate our athletes in a variety of events," said Geneva track coach Brian Yowler. "It′s a tremendous amount of fun seeing many of our freshmen discover that they can be competitive on the collegiate level."

Both teams will get a chance to build on this opening experience with a meet at Grove City Saturday.

Geneva athletes that placed in the Top Ten at California University′s Early Bird Meet


Alayna Merkle, 2nd in 800 meters, 6th in 1500 meters

Anna Kluitenberg, 4th in 3000 meter steeplechase

Samantha Fisher, 5th in high jump, 9th in long jump

Rebekah Rupert, 5th in javelin

Mary Keen, 6th in discus

Morgan Peaco, 6th in high jump

Sarah Foy, 7th in shot put


Bill Oplinger, 2nd in triple jump, 5th in long jump

Jacob LaGorga, 3rd in pole vault

Jacob Mellinger, 3rd in 400 meters

Jordan Rupert, 3rd in javelin

Dalton Paxson, 4th in triple jump, 6th in high jump

Josh Guiser, 5th in 100 meters, 6th in 200 meters

Colin Craig, 6th in triple jump

Ken Kutcel, 6th in 10,000 meter run

Isaac Barringer, 7th in discus, 9th in shot put

Matt Pherson, 7th in javelin

Matt Logan, 8th in discus

Clay Joseph, 9th in triple jump, 10th in long jump

Michael Savino, 9th in 110 hurdles

4x100 meter relay finished third - LaGorga, Aaron Marga, Billy Thomas, and Mellinger

Geneva College invites students to accept the challenge of an academically excellent, Christ-centered education. Offering nearly 40 undergraduate majors, Adult Degree Programs with fully online and campus-based options, and seven graduate degrees, Geneva has programs that place students at the forefront of higher learning. Adhering to the inerrancy of Scripture, a Geneva education is grounded in God′s word as well as in a core curriculum designed to prepare students vocationally to think, write and communicate well in today′s world.