Quakertown's Bukavich, Reed & Hurst to Play Collegiate Baseball

On Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017, Quakertown seniors Evan Hurst, Jake Reed & Matt Bukavich were recognized for committing to continue their baseball careers at the collegiate level.  To view photos of the event, please visit the Photo Gallery.

“I’m really proud of all three of these guys and the other seniors as well,” coach Jon Pallone said. “These guys were all freshmen my first year when I took over the program. All of them have been extremely coachable, they’re great listeners, and they’re just great people.”

Matt Bukavich – Philadelphia University (Baseball)
Major: 
Construction Management
Final list of colleges:  Philadelphia University, West Chester, VMI, Slippery Rock
Reasons for choosing Philly U:  “I got a pretty good offer from them. I was looking at a few other schools, and it was the best fit for internships for my future, and it had the best fit for my degree.”
What was the progression that led you to competing in baseball at the collegiate level?  “At the beginning of my junior year, it started becoming a reality when I started hitting the weights and gaining a lot of weight. When my fastball velocity jumped up, that’s when the offers started coming in.”
Coach Jon Pallone says:  “Matt has continually developed as a player and a leader in our program over the last four seasons. He’s a hard-nosed, team-focused player who loves to play the game of baseball. I’ve seen great progress in Matt over the years. I watched his fastball velocity improve and, much more importantly, control of his pitches.
“Matt’s also very charismatic in his leadership style and truly brings energy to practice as well as games, and it’s definitely infectious and contagious. He’s always very positive and encouraging to his teammates. He was voted to be a captain by his teammates as a junior, and he excelled in that role.”
About Matt:
Favorite food: 
Steak
Favorite movie:  Step Brothers
Favorite music:  Rap

Evan Hurst – Arcadia University (Baseball)
Major: 
Business
Final list of colleges:  Arcadia, Penn State-Altoona, Roanoke
Reasons for choosing Arcadia:  “The location – how close it is – and the availability for internships because they have a very good intern program for business. I felt Arcadia was the best fit for me after meeting with the coaches and the overnight with the players.”
What was the progression that led you to competing in baseball at the collegiate level?  “Last summer more than anything because that’s when everything started to click. I was hitting a lot better, throwing out more runners.”
Coach Jon Pallone says:  “Evan is a good talent in our program. He’s a very good defensive catcher with plus speed on the bases and in the field. He’s a hard worker with great character and brings intensity and focus to the ballpark every day. As a junior, Evan broke his wrist in the first regular season game. He was unable to get clearance to return during the year. However, that didn’t stop him from coming to every practice and every game. He was willing to support his teammates and do whatever he could to help us win games. To me, that says a lot about his character and the type of player he is.
“In the classroom, I haven’t had the pleasure of teaching Evan, but from conversations I’ve had with his teachers, I know he works hard to achieve success, and those traits are evident in baseball as well. In all the time I’ve known him, Evan has been a kind and good person, always making the right decisions.”
About Evan:
Favorite food: 
Hamburgers
Favorite movie:  Benchwarmers
Favorite music:  Hip Hop

Jake Reed – Bloomsburg University (Baseball)
Major: 
Management
Final list of colleges:  Bloomsburg, Philadelphia University, Misericordia.
Reasons for choosing Bloomsburg:  “I visited a lot of schools, and Bloomsburg felt like the better fit for me, and the area is really nice. They have a pretty good program, and I liked it there the best.”
What was the progression that led you to competing in baseball at the collegiate level?  “At the end of my sophomore year and beginning of junior year, I started thinking about playing in college because obviously playing as a freshman kind of helps.”
Coach Jon Pallone says:  “I’ve had the privilege of knowing Jake since he was in my sixth grade class when I was teaching sixth grade. Three years later as a freshman, he became a varsity starter with our program, not just at any position but at shortstop. In baseball, that’s a key position for many reasons. The shortstop is usually involved in the most amount of plays, excluding the pitcher and catcher. He’s also central to communicating to the rest of the infield and outfield. It is often seen as a position of leadership.
“When Jake came up the middle of his freshman year, he was an immediate impact player. He simply forced his way into the lineup and onto the field with his excellent play. Not only did he make contributions on the field, but he did so in the dugout and on the practice field as well. Everyone knows that games are won at practice. I can say that I’ve witnessed Jake develop his leadership skills in practice each year. In fact, he was chosen by his teammates to be a captain his junior season as well. It’s not often that you have a four-year starter in a school our size. It will be strange next year to look out on the field and not see Jake there.”
About Jake:
Favorite food: 
Pizza
Favorite movie:  Field of Dreams
Favorite music:  Hip Hop