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Central Bucks East seniors recognized


Melayna Pettigrew has always been an athlete and thought soccer would be her sport of choice at the next level, but the Central Bucks East senior had a dramatic change in plans.

“I didn’t start running until sophomore year,” Pettigrew said. “At that point, I thought it was still soccer, but I knew I didn’t want to do soccer in college.

“I guess I fell in love with track, and I thought to myself – ‘I actually think I’d go insane if I wasn’t running.’”

An all-league hurdler, Pettigrew will be taking her track skills to Emory University where she will major in biology or neuroscience. She also considered Penn State, Virginia Tech and the University of Delaware.

“I really liked the campus and the opportunities Emory can provide for me,” Pettigrew said.

Pettigrew was one of seven CB East seniors recognized for committing to compete in collegiate sports on Thursday, Feb. 22.

Teammate Ava DePrizio will be continuing her track career at Tufts University where she will major in physics. Also included in her final list of colleges were Case Western and the University of Rochester.

“I really liked the area,” DePrizio said of the school located in the Greater Boston area. “We went there for a visit, and I really liked it.

“It’s not a huge school, and I didn’t want to go to a giant school. I also wanted to stay on the East Coast. They have a really good science program, which was important to me.”

DePrizio also liked the idea of competing for a Division III track team.

“I didn’t want to do D1, so everything made Tufts the right fit,” the East senior said.

Damian Frayne and Thomas Cano-Piszel will continue their baseball careers at the collegiate level. Frayne will take his talents to The College of Wooster where he will major in business/economics.

“The coaching staff took a large interest in me, and they have the experience I was looking for,” Frayne said. “When coaches really reach out to you, it’s something special.”

Growing up, Frayne dreamed of one day playing in the MLB.

“That’s typically how it is,” Frayne said. “The college recruiting really picked up around the age of 13 when I started picking up weights, doing the extra work at practice, staying after practice, and eating right, which is the big thing. All those things add up.”

Cano-Piszel, who will major in electrical engineering, will be attending Shippensburg University. He also considered Quinnipiac.

“I love the campus, the coaching staff was really good, the honors college is really good for my major, and the connection to the alumni is really strong,” Cano-Piszel said. “Ever since I started playing baseball, my goal was to play at the next level.

“It wasn’t until 13U that I realized I could actually do it, and ever since then, I’ve been working as hard as I could to compete at any level – whether it’s junior college, Division I, II or III. Being a college athlete is something I’ve wanted to do.”

Owen Lever will continue his swimming career at Lafayette College, choosing the Patriot League school from a final list that included The College of New Jersey, Gettysburg, Fairfield and West Chester. He will major in biomedical engineering.

“I just really love the team atmosphere,” Lever said. “And the school itself prioritizes academics, which is very important to me. I just felt it was the right fit.”

Lever is following in the footsteps of his parents, who both were collegiate swimmers.

“Up until freshman year and sophomore year fall, I played lacrosse, but about that same time, I realized how much dedication it takes to swim at college,” Lever said. “So, I decided to quit lacrosse and focus on swimming year-round.

“I just really wanted to be able to help a team in my collegiate career, and I really wanted to do it in college based on my parents’ experiences as well.”

Joey Roth and Nick Raysky will both compete in soccer at the collegiate level. Roth will continue his career at Moravian University where he will major in kinesiology/exercise science. He also considered Scranton, West Chester and Montclair State.

“I went to Moravian a couple times – I did the tour, I did a couple of ID camps,” Roth said. “People always say it feels like the right place. Being with the team, it felt like a family, and I knew it was the right place for me.

“I always just had the desire to play at the next level. It got to senior year, and the next level is college, so I might as well pursue it.”

Raysky will continue his soccer career at Elizabethtown College. He also considered York.

“I was originally going to York, but their head coach got another offer at E-town,” said Raysky, who is undecided on a major. “He asked me to visit the campus, so I visited. They’re better academically and soccer-wise, so I chose to go to E-town.”

Raysky has been playing soccer his whole life.

“Whenever I’m on the field and playing, I just get into this flow, this state – everything is clear, and it’s very fun for me,” the East senior said. “I just want to play, so I chose to play in college.”

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