Univest Featured Athletes (Wk 5-11-17)

SuburbanOneSports.com recognizes a male and female featured athlete each week. The awards, sponsored by Univest, are given to seniors of good character who are students in good standing that have made significant contributions to their teams. Selections are based on nominations received from coaches, athletic directors and administrators.

Univest’s SuburbanOneSports.com Featured Female Athlete (Week of May 11, 2016)

Sydney Bachmayer is easy to pick out in a crowd. She’s the one with the perpetual smile, the one everyone gravitates to, the one who looks as though she’s having fun in every setting. It takes no time at all to understand why the Upper Moreland senior is so valued by her coaches. “Athletic ability aside, just her personality, her work ethic – if you could have a team of 20 of her, you would have a great team,” Upper Moreland lacrosse coach Kim Frantz said. UM soccer coach Lisa Benvenuto, who has coached Bachmayer since seventh grade in multiple sports, echoed a similar sentiment. “Sydney has an infectious personality and spirit,” she said. “She is a smart, funny and charismatic young woman. She is a natural leader, athlete and competitor. She embodies all of the characteristics that a coach could want in a player.”

When Frantz took over the helm of the UM lacrosse program during the offseason, she didn’t have to look far to find her go-to person on the squad. “She was always, day one, the person I contacted, the person I went through,” the Bears’ first-year coach said. While Bachmayer may be the owner of an infectious personality, she is a fierce competitor when she steps on the field. She recently broke the school’s record for career goals of 200 held by 2016 graduate Delaney Smith, and Bachmayer is a dangerous weapon on attack. “She’s definitely the kid – if we need a goal – we’re running something so she can get in there and get a goal,” Frantz said. “She’s the person we focus on when we want to get something done.” Making her accomplishment even more impressive is the fact that Bachmayer is playing with perpetual pain in both of her legs. She was diagnosed with compartment syndrome this winter. This spring her activity has been limited to playing in the games with practices spent icing her legs on the sidelines. “I shouldn’t really be playing in the games either, but I want to,” she said. “It’s really bad after I play games.” Bachmayer is planning to have surgery in both legs when her final high school season is completed.

A four-year varsity player in lacrosse and soccer, Bachmayer has been a major contributor in both. She will continue her lacrosse career at West Chester University where she plans to major in international business with a minor in German. It’s a switch from the special education major the president of UM’s Athletes Helping Athletes was certain she’d pursue. “My whole life I’ve always enjoyed working with special needs kids, and I always wanted to be a special education teacher,” Bachmayer said. “Over the summer, I did an exchange program in Germany and Iceland, and I just really like travelling. I really like talking German. I was thinking of ways I could make my career into something I could tie both of those into. I figured I’ll have more opportunities doing international business and I could always do things with special ed kids on the side.” Bachmayer is also involved in the Bear Buddies Club, which brings sports to students with special needs. She also is active in Key Club. “She is a very determined young woman with a bright future ahead of her,” Benvenuto said.

To read Bachmayer’s complete profile, please click on the following link: http://www.suburbanonesports.com/featured-athletes/female/sydney-bachmayer-0070541

 

 

Univest’s SuburbanOneSports.com Featured Male Athlete (Week of May 11, 2016)

If Harry S Truman senior Brian Aicher were to look back, he would see a boyhood cut short by forces out of his control. Because of the way he handled the adversity, the boy became a man. And the man that he is has no choice but to look ahead. As the ace of Truman’s pitching staff, Aicher’s senior season has been a series of quality starts resulting in losses in the win-loss column for the struggling Tigers. His coach, Tim Monaghan, uses the term “hard-luck pitcher” when describing Aicher, but just the fact that he is on the mound – after dealing with career-threatening injuries and while working to support his family after the death of his 39-year-old father to a stroke – is a victory in and of itself. “The full student-athlete definition definitely fits Brian,” said Monaghan. “He has battled injury and personal obstacles. He does all of this and is one of our top pitchers while maintaining a 3.10 GPA. He has been accepted at a number of colleges – Widener, Slippery Rock, Mercer County Communitiy College – but finances are an obstacle. He has been working a part-time job while working out in the fall/winter and (he) continues during the season. There are days when we allow Brian to miss practice to work because it is a necessary task to help his family.”

Typically, such an arrangement – allowing a player to miss practice to work – would meet with derision with a team. But that’s not the case with Aicher, who has the full respect of his coaches and teammates. “There is not one ounce of resentment, because this is what we have to do for him to be able to play baseball,” said Monaghan. “By no means is he trying to get out of anything. He is a full-time student-athlete who is also trying to do the best he can for his family.” Aicher’s job is not exactly flipping burgers, checking tickets at a movie theater or handing out miniature golf gear. “I cut metal and build parts for panels that go to New York City to go into buildings,” Aicher said. “Before baseball (season), I would work about 35-40 hours a week but now, with baseball, I try to work at least 20-25 hours a week.”

Instead of being bitter about the extreme scenario, the son of the late Brian Sr and Lisa Saylor has turned his thoughts around into a positive. “I think of it as it might help me be more successful in the long run in my life,” he said. “Instead of sleeping or sitting around, I see it as an opportunity to get myself ready to accomplish things in life. I got that from a quote I saw a long time ago that said ‘I’ll sleep when I’m successful.’ Or another one that said ‘don’t wait on an opportunity, create one.’ I’ve always been interested in motivational quotes.”

Although Aicher theoretically has the opportunity to attend college now, he is willing to expose himself to more motivational quotes by doing a stint in the Marines and then attending college with the financial help that commitment provides. At present, this major decision – one that did not come easily – hinges on word from his Marine recruiter. “It is known to be the most difficult (of the military branches),” Aicher said. “I would like to do the biggest challenge I could do so I can push myself and be better than I was before. Yes, I have considered the risks, and my family is very concerned.” Aicher has dealt with injuries that have slowed his baseball career, and Monaghan, who understands Aicher’s motivation for joining the Marines, says a few schools have shown mild interest in Aicher but the injuries cut down on his chances to be scene. “He is so impressive,” the Tigers’ coach said. “He has had a lot of obstacles. If anyone had a reason to make excuses, it is Brian, but he doesn’t let anything affect him. Knowing what a rough childhood he has had, he still could not be a better person. It says a lot about the kind of kid he is. He is someone the school and the whole community can really be proud of.”

To read Aicher’s compete profile, please click on the following link: http://www.suburbanonesports.com/featured-athletes/male/brian-aicher-0070527