August 4, 2014

Personnel changes at Grove City

GROVE CITY, Pa. Ė The Grove City College Department of Physical Education and Athletics has made several personnel adjustments in preparation for the 2014-15 academic year.

Grove City College has hired Alyssa Birch as its new head womenís water polo coach and assistant swimming and diving coach, Kristen Hughes-Cramer as head softball coach and assistant womenís basketball coach, Philip Prins as assistant professor of exercise science, and as previously announced in February, Erin Street as head volleyball coach and assistant track and field coach.

Birch comes to Grove City after spending the last five years at California Baptist University. She earned four letters as a member of the Cal Baptist womenís water polo team from 2010 to 2014. Birch helped CBU to a 97-50 aggregate record during her four seasons (2010-12, 2014) of play. She accumulated 70 career goals and 110 career assists.

She graduated summa cum laude from Cal Baptist in 2013 with a bachelorís degree in kinesiology. She recently finished her masterís degree in kinesiology at Cal Baptist.

A native of Calgary, Alberta, Birch worked as an assistant coach for the Alberta Water Polo Associationís provincial team from June 2010 to August 2013.

Birch replaces Rachel Griepsma, who stepped down after two seasons as head coach. Griepsma compiled a 23-20 overall record, including a 19-6 mark in Collegiate Water Polo Association Division III action and she earned CWPA Division III Championship Tournament Coach of the Year honors in 2013.

Hughes-Cramer joins the department on a full-time basis after working as an assistant softball coach at Grove City College since 2009.

A Grove City native, Hughes-Cramer earned four letters as a member of the Collegeís softball team from 2005 to 2008 while playing both in the infield and the outfield. She started 97 career games for the Wolverines and led the team in hitting as a junior with a .378 average.

Hughes-Cramer also led the team in runs, total bases and on-base percentage during that 2007 season, earning Second Team All-Presidents' Athletic Conference honors for her efforts. She earned Dean's List honors and also landed on the Presidentsí Athletic Conference Academic honor roll during her career.

Hughes-Cramer graduated cum laude with a bachelor's degree in Spanish in 2008 and completed her master's degree in sports management at Slippery Rock University in 2009.

Hughes-Cramer replaces Christine Slater, who held that position during the 2013-14 academic year. Slater has accepted the head womenís basketball coaching position at Penn State Behrend in Erie, Pa. Last year, Slater coached Grove Cityís softball team to a 12-21 overall record, including an 8-4 mark over the final two weeks of the regular season.

Prins will teach several courses in the Collegeís rapidly-growing exercise science program. He is currently working on his doctorate in exercise physiology at the University of Pittsburgh.

Prins earned his bachelor of science in kinesiology from Georgia Southern University in 2009. He then earned a masterís degree in exercise science from Georgia Southern in 2011. He has worked in the health and kinesiology department at Georgia Southern as well as the department of health and physical activity at Pitt.

While at Georgia Southern, Prins competed on the Eaglesí menís tennis team for four seasons (2005-09). He earned All-Southern Conference recognition in doubles play as a junior and qualified for the Southern Conference Academic Honor Roll in each of his final three seasons.

Prins replaces Dr. Allison Williams, who stepped down at the conclusion of the 2013-14 academic year. The College elevated Williams to associate department chair in 2010 after she served as assistant chair for seven years. As associate chair, she oversaw the exercise science major and the Collegeís intricate physical education program.

Williams spent 10 seasons as head women's track and field coach at Grove City College from 2001 to 2010 and also coached the men's squad during the 2009 and 2010 seasons. In her first six seasons as women's coach, she directed the Wolverines to six Presidents' Athletic Conference titles.

Additionally, Williams coached menís and womenís cross country at the College from 2000 to 2003 and led the teams to eight total conference titles.

She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 1993 with a bachelor of arts degree in exercise science, then added a master's degree in exercise physiology from Pitt in 1995. Williams completed her doctorate in exercise physiology in April 2004.

A native of East Meadow, N.Y., Williams will be returning to her native Long Island.

Street comes to Grove City after spending the last eight seasons at nearby Slippery Rock University. Street worked as a graduate assistant at The Rock from 2006 until the spring of 2009. She then became an assistant volleyball coach prior to the 2009 season.

A native of Charlotte, N.C., Street earned a bachelorís degree in psychology at Wheeling Jesuit in 2006. She completed her master of arts in community counseling at Slippery Rock in 2009. Street succeeds head coach Susan Roberts, who retired at end of the academic year.

The College has also made three interim appointments within the Department of Physical Education and Athletics for the 2014-15 academic year. Head track and field coach Todd Gibson will be interim assistant athletic director while head menís soccer coach Mike Dreves has been appointed as interim project manager for the exercise science major.

Facility coordinator/game manager Cathy Jacobs will be Grove Cityís senior womenís administrator for the 2014-15 academic year.

Gibson recently completed his fourth season as head track and field coach. He guided both the menís and womenís teams to Presidentsí Athletic Conference titles last spring. A 2002 Grove City graduate, Gibson has spent 10 seasons as an assistant football coach at the College. He works specifically with the outside linebackers while also serving as the program's strength and conditioning coordinator.

A Champion, Ohio, native, Gibson graduated from Grove City College with a bachelor's degree in political science. He also earned a bachelor's degree in integrated social studies/secondary education from Youngstown State University. In 2006, he completed his master's degree in exercise science from California University of Pennsylvania. He holds the rank of assistant professor of physical education and exercise science.

Dreves recently completed his eighth year overall at the College and his second year as Grove Cityís compliance coordinator. As menís soccer coach, Dreves has directed the Wolverines to a 74-62-21 record. Grove City is 21-5-5 in conference play over the past four seasons.

Dreves graduated from Grove City College in May 1997 with a bachelor's degree in mathematics/secondary education. He then earned his master's degree in exercise science at nearby Slippery Rock University. He holds the rank of assistant professor.

Jacobs joined the Department of Physical Education and Athletics in 1988 and has coached womenís swimming and diving (1988-2008), womenís tennis (1991-2003, 2005-2007) and softball (1989-1993) at Grove City. She coached teams to conference titles in each of those three sports. Overall, Jacobs-coached squads captured 23 total league crowns.

The 2014-15 academic year will be Jacobsí seventh year as facility coordinator and game manager. In that role, Jacobs handles scheduling for all of Grove City College's athletic facilities as well as overseeing all game management responsibilities. She also holds the rank of assistant professor.

A native of McComb, Miss., Jacobs earned her bachelor's degree in health, physical education and recreation from Delta State (Miss.) in 1983. She added her master's degree from Delta State in 1986.

 Go to Grove City Sports