YATESVILLE — Two Pittston Area seniors recently made decisions regarding their collegiate athletic careers.
Nic Anastasi has elected to continue his football career at Mansfield University, while Alana Platukus will continue her field hockey career at Dickinson College.
Following her senior field hockey season, Platukus was named to the Wyoming Valley Conference Coaches Association Division 1 Second Team. She was named a First Team Division 2 all-star in 2013. That year, she scored the game-winning goal to lock up Pittston Area’s first WVC Division 2 championship.
In 46 career games at Pittston Area, Platukus scored 26 goals and had 18 assists. She also owns a gold medal for her performance in the PA Keystone Games. The forward has played for the PA Elite Field Hockey Club team out of Kingston.
“It’s very stress-relieving,” Platukus said about getting the signing day out of the way. “I’m happy to be going there and I’m really excited to start my collegiate career.”
The Red Devils finished the 2015 season 12-7 with a loss to Franklin & Marshall University in the semifinals of the Centennial Conference playoffs.
Platukus will be studying biology. She said her time playing on the Pittston Area field hockey team was very rewarding.
“(Pittston Area field hockey coach Caitlin Hadzimichalis) was great and the team was great,” Platukus said. “We had our ups and downs but we did very well.”
Platukus is looking forward to competing on a higher level.
“I’m looking forward to the experience and I’m excited to see how much different it will actually be,” she said.
Anastasi picks sprint football
Anastasi, a defensive back and specialty player for four years on the Pittston Area football team, will make the trip to Mansfield to continue his football career. But this football isn’t the normal way the game is played.
Anastasi will join Mountaineers’ sprint football team. Mansfield plays in the Collegiate Sprint Football League (CSFL). Sprint football is played on regular size football fields with full pads. All of the rules are the same, except all players must be under 180 points.
“It’s really neat,” Anastasi said. “It’s not like football here and your linemen are just as fast as your running backs. There’s very little wiggle room running down the field.”
This past year, Mansfield finished 2-5. That record included losses to the Naval Academy and Army West Point. The CSFL consists of Navy, Army, Cornell University, Chestnut Hill College, Princeton University, Franklin Pierce University, the University of Pennsylvania and Post University.
In 2015, Mansfield had 12 all-CSFL all-star selections. The Mountaineers finished the season in sixth. Anastasi said his time at Pittston Area is one he will never forget.
“We didn’t have the greatest seasons, but you make relationships with guys you never forget,” he said. “It was an amazing ride.”
Anastasi will be going to Mansfield undecided, but he’s leaning toward Criminal Justice or Forensic Science.