Mascot receives induction honor

UNIVERSITY PARK — Since 1904, the Nittany Lion mascot has been the symbol of Penn State’s best. A century later, he’ll be enshrined along with the best professional and collegiate mascots from around country.

The Nittany Lion will officially be inducted into the Mascot Hall of Fame after a year-long competition. The Nittany Lion is one of four mascots who made the cut for the 2018 class of inductees.

After the nomination was announced in October 2016, a public, online voting contest ran through January 2017, when the Nittany Lion was announced as one of the remaining six competitors. The final voting process was completed by the Hall’s lifetime voting members and executive committee members, which resulted in the Nittany Lion’s selection to join the ranks of fellow Mascot Hall of Famers.

“A lot of fans look at our lion as a symbol of the University, and they get really excited when they see him,” said Curtis White, coach of the Penn State spirit squads and Nittany Lion coach. “He’s our celebrity on campus. And, he does a lot of great things in the community, too. It’s a great honor.”

Before the Nittany Lion was adopted as the athletic mascot, Penn State fans drew their affection towards Old Coaly, a mule who was born the same year that the University was founded and who helped carry limestone to the construction site of Old Main as it was being built. A few years later, a baseball player came up with the idea for the Nittany Lion as a mascot.

Elsewhere:

n The Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference released its All-Conference team for women’s volleyball and it included three Penn State Altoona standouts. Voted first team All-AMCC was sophomore outside hitter Lauren Diller. Junior outside hitter Kelsey Bristol was a second team All-Conference selection, and sophomore middle blocker Josie Stovall was picked to the third team.

n For the third time this season, Penn State women’s volleyball player Kendall White was named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the week. White, a sophomore libero from Indianapolis, Ind., finished the weekend with 34 digs over two matches, averaging 4.9 per set. She also took 37 reception attempts, without a reception error. She added nine assists and three aces over the week. White is now just the third Nittany Lions to be honored as the Defensive Player of the Week three times in a single season by the Big Ten league office. She joins Katie Slay and Kaleena Walters.

n Penn State Altoona women’s soccer senior forward Shoshana Mahoney was named first-team All-Conference selection, when the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference released its annual postseason awards. Mahoney set personal career-highs in goals, points, and shots during her senior season with Penn State Altoona women’s soccer. She led the Lady Lions in 2017 in points, goals, shots, shots on goal, and game-winning goals.

n Penn State Altoona senior forward/midfielder soccer player Seth Murrelle was selected to the third team of the All-Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference squad. Murrelle enjoyed a strong senior campaign for the Lions, leading his team in points, goals, shots, shots on goal, and game-winning goals. Murrelle started all 17 games for Penn State Altoona this fall. In the AMCC, he ranked 14th in goals scored (7), 15th in points (15), 17th in shots on goal (19), and 19th in total shots attempted (35). He was also 10th in the conference in game-winning goals (2).

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