Hatch hopes to leap from Penn to NFL


What's this?

A fist-pumping, headline-craving, limelight loving offensive tackle from the usually staid Ivy League who just might be playing in the NFL next season.

Yes, it's true.

His name is Jeff Hatch, and he looks the part of a tough offensive lineman, standing 6 feet 7 and weighing 316 pounds. The former Severn School football and basketball standout has just concluded a four-year career at the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a Division I-AA All-America pick this past season.

Hatch topped off his Ivy career on Christmas Day by helping lead the Blue to a 28-10 victory over the Gray. He played every snap at left tackle for the Blue and drew the attention of pro scouts with his athleticism and quick feet.

"I like to be the center of attention," said Hatch. "That's why I first balked at a move from defensive tackle to offensive tackle after my sophomore year. Playing defense was what I did on the football field."

However, the Quakers needed Hatch more on the offensive line, and prime-time moments were almost impossible to come by. But there was no silencing Hatch completely.

"If I make a big pancake block to spring a runner, I'll let people know it was me by pumping my fist to the crowd," said Hatch. "I can help fire up a crowd with my emotional displays."

Hatch lives in the same Millersville neighborhood as Ravens minority owner Steve Bisciotti, but Hatch has never met Bisciotti. "I know he [Bisciotti] has been asking some questions about me," said Hatch. "I'd love to play here and my family would love it. But I'm not going to talk about who might draft me. I have no control over that."

Hatch said the speculation is that he will probably go in the fourth or fifth round.

Harmel leads Coast Guard

Freshman guard Amy Harmel (Archbishop Spalding) has been a major factor in the U.S. Coast Guard Academy women's basketball program turnaround from a 5-19 mark last season to a 5-5 record this season.

Harmel and her teammates have gone on a four-game winning streak, highlighted by a 28-point effort by Harmel in a 93-69 victory over Notre Dame College of New Hampshire. Harmel hit eight three-pointers against Notre Dame, giving her a team-best total of 29 in 10 games. She has raised her team-leading scoring average to 13.3 and is second in assists with 2.7 per game.

Courter good on pledge

When Marymount junior power forward Ashlee Courter (Mercy) was shut out by a collapsing Baldwin-Wallace defense two Sundays ago, she vowed to come back strong in the next game against William Paterson.

Did she ever.

Courter went from the worst day of her career to the best, scoring a career-high 22 points in an 81-65 victory that raised the team record to 9-4. Courter also had a team-leading seven rebounds and game highs of five assists and two blocks.

The 22-point effort included four of six three-point shooting.

Shimko rolls on

Senior swimmer Mark Shimko (Mount St. Joseph) is one of 11 returning All-Americas for Emory University of Atlanta's powerful NCAA Division III men's team, which finished second in the national championship meet last year.

Shimko has qualified for five events in the NCAA meet this year: the 100- and 200-yard breastroke, the 200- and 400-yard individual medleys, and the 200-yard backstroke.

Shimko is the leading point-scorer for Emory with 207.

Mobley starts for Emory

Junior midfielder Anne Mobley (Loch Raven) started all 19 games for Emory's 17-1-1 women's soccer team and had one goal and four assists. Emory lost its lone game to the University of Rochester, 1-0, giving Rochester a bid to the NCAA Division III soccer tournament.

Have an item for Postcards? Contact Bill Free by e-mail at bfree706@hotmail.com or by phone at 410-833-5349.

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