College roundup: York High’s Jahiem White makes mark at West Virginia spring game
Jahiem White was playing high school football less than six months ago. His York High classmates are still counting down to graduation. But after enrolling early at West Virginia, White is already making defenders miss on the college football stage.
White rushed for a game-high 91 yards on seven carries in West Virginia’s Gold-Blue spring game Saturday, highlighted by a 53-yard breakaway touchdown early in the fourth quarter. The score helped propel the Gold team to a 56-51 victory.
“He's explosive, we've seen that in practice,” Mountaineers head coach Neal Brown told reporters after the game. “Jahiem's a fan favorite already.”
The game pitted the WVU offense (Gold) against the defense (Blue), with points also awarded for a slew of competitions scattered throughout the afternoon. The offense earned points in traditional fashion, while the defense was rewarded for stops, three-and-outs and turnovers.
The Gold team led 7-4 after pregame competitions, 16-14 after the first quarter and 32-30 coming out of halftime. The score was 40-36 through three periods, but the Blue team was up 48-47 before White's big run. Both teams added three more points under a running clock and Gold held on for the five-point win.
After his touchdown run, White added an 18-yard scamper later in the fourth quarter.
White, who joined WVU as a three-star running back recruit after a sensational career at York High, still faces an uphill battle to playing time when the games count. Returning backs CJ Donaldson, Tony Mathis, Jaylen Anderson and Justin Johnson all entered the spring ahead of him on the depth chart. Only Donaldson and Anderson played Saturday from that group, giving White a chance to prove he belongs in the mix.
“He's just hungry, he wants to get out there on the field and be ready to play,” Donaldson said of White. “As the season goes on, he's going to put on some muscle, build confidence to where he's going to play his game and I think he's going to be a great addition to this team.”
White’s high school teammate, quarterback Sam Stoner, also enrolled early at West Virginia after accepting a preferred walk-on offer. Saturday’s snaps under center went to Garrett Greene and Nicco Marchiol, who are expected to compete for the starting job.
West Virginia opens its 2023 season at Penn State on Sept. 2.
YORK COLLEGE NOTES
Conference champion: Spartan sophomore Gavin Ganter is the MAC Commonwealth men’s golf individual champion after firing rounds of 70 and 80 Saturday and Sunday at P.B. Dye Golf Club in Ijamsville, Maryland. Ganter’s 2-under par round on the first day of the tournament set the college course record, and he fought through a tough round Sunday to win the event by a single stroke over Eastern's Jake Micewski and Hood's Brady Leonard. The victory earned Ganter the league’s Player of the Year award.
York College finished second as a team in the event with a two-day score of 625. Hood won the title with a 618, while Stevenson was third in the seven-team field at 628. Riley Rohlfs — who won this event in 2021 — finished fourth for the Spartans after shooting 76 both days. The event caps the careers of seniors Rohlfs, Nick Fioravante and Ian Arnold.
On the women’s side, York College placed first of five teams at the Golden Oaks Invitational last Wednesday, with freshman Grace Strickland winning individually with a 3-over 75. Strickland earned MAC Women’s Golfer of the Week honors Tuesday morning. The MAC Championship is slated for this Saturday and Sunday in Fleetwood.
Commonwealth crushers: The men’s and women’s lacrosse teams put together another dominant week and took home three of the MACC’s four weekly honors. Kiersten Blanchard and Bella Garabo won offensive and defensive awards for the women’s team, while Jack Keller was the Defensive Player of the Week on the men’s side.
Blanchard recorded hat tricks in the Spartans’ wins over Albright (16-6 last Wednesday) and Lebanon Valley (20-5 on Saturday) and totaled 21 draw controls in the pair of contests as well. Garabo, York’s senior goalie, was honored for the fifth straight week after saving 70% of her shots in 60 minutes of action. The No. 9 Spartans (12-3, 6-0) host Stevenson on Wednesday and visit Widener on Saturday to close the regular season.
Keller earned his second straight weekly honor after allowing five goals in 51 minutes of action against Albright and Lebanon Valley. The York men won those games 26-6 and 22-5, respectively. Keller leads the MACC with a 6.11 save percentage and a 6.98 goals-against average. The No. 11 Spartans (10-5, 6-0) visit Stevenson on Wednesday in a battle for first place, as the Mustangs are also 6-0 in the league. Then comes a Saturday visit to Widener in the regular-season finale.
Season swings: York College baseball is coming off a 2-2 week that started with a walk-off win over No. 18-ranked Rowan — on a hit batsman, no less — and finished with a series loss to Lebanon Valley. The Spartans fell 15-1 Friday and 2-1 early Saturday before pulling out a 6-4 win and improving to 18-16 (13-8 MACC). They’ll play five games in five days this week, hosting No. 3 Shenandoah on Wednesday before a three-game set with Widener on Friday and Saturday and a Sunday home game against Immaculata.
Not to be outdone, the softball team will play five games in four days starting with Wednesday’s doubleheader against Albright, continuing with a makeup game Friday against Widener and finishing with Saturday’s twin bill at Eastern. York College (13-18, 6-5) beat Widener 8-0 last Saturday before storms washed out the second contest.
Charm City chasers: The men’s and women’s track and field teams competed Saturday in Baltimore at the Hopkins/Loyola Invitational, with Julia Pena once again leading the charge by winning the women’s 100 hurdles and pole vault. Zoey Myers added a third-place finish in the women’s javelin. Brendan DeSantis was the top finisher for the men with a fifth-place showing in the 200. Team scores were not kept at the event.
York’s teams will compete at Shippensburg in the Paul Kaiser Classic this Saturday, while the school will host the majority of the York-Adams League for Dallastown’s annual Ray Geesey Invitational. The Wildcats’ stadium is being renovated this spring, forcing the team to compete away from home.
Tournament time: The two-semester regular season is complete for York College men’s and women’s tennis. The men finished 7-9 (4-3) and earned a matchup with Lebanon Valley in the MACC semifinals Tuesday afternoon, which the Spartans dropped by a 5-0 final. The women (11-5, 6-1) are the second seed in the conference tournament and will host No. 3-seed Alvernia at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday.
Both squads closed their regular seasons Saturday with 9-0 wins over Eastern.
ON THE LINE
Penn State York baseball was within reach of its first-ever PSUAC East division title, but the Lions fell just short after dropping three of four games over the weekend to Penn State Brandywine, which captured the division instead with a 12-4 mark. PSY (15-11, 11-5) finished tied for second alongside Penn State Schuylkill.
The PSUAC tournament begins Friday, and PSY will battle Schuylkill at 4 p.m. at MapleZone in Aston. The loser will be out of the tournament, while the winner will play Brandywine at 7 p.m. and advance to championship weekend May 7 and 8 in State College.
The Lions were set to close their regular season Tuesday with a non-divisional home game against Penn State Wilkes-Barre, a makeup from March 26.