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The college playing career of Buffalo State's standout defensive end Greg Rogers apparently is over. A three-year performer for the Bengals, Rogers is ineligible to play this season, head coach Jerry Boyes said Thursday night.

The news came two days before the Bengals are scheduled to open their season against Robert Morris College Saturday at 1 p.m. at Coyer Field.

Rogers, who was a preseason Division III All-America selection by Street & Smith's College Football Magazine, was declared ineligible after it was learned that he is in 11th semester of college, including three semesters he attended at Erie Community College.

NCAA rules for Division III allow an athlete four years of eligibility over a 10-semester period.

Rogers spent his first three semesters at Buffalo State, then attended ECC for three semesters although he was under the assumption that he was a part-time student (fewer than 12 semester course hours) for one of those semesters. However, Rogers did not properly withdraw from one course leaving him 12 hours for one semester.

According to Boyes, there is no grounds for appeal even though the mistake appeared to be inadvertent.

"It's kind of black and white stuff," said Boyes, who is also Buffalo State's athletic director. "It's a shame. Greg is due to graduate in December, but a rule is a rule and there is nothing you can do about it."

Boyes found no fault with ECC's handling of the situation.

"Greg never went to the course and didn't realize he had signed up for it, but the responsibility is on the student, not on the institution. . . . There is nothing ECC can do about it."

Ted Bucierka, an inside linebacker, is being tried at the position in Rogers' absence. Rogers led the Bengals with 12 1/2 sacks last season.

"Losing Greg is a blow to us," Boyes said. "We can either sulk about it or not allow it to affect us. I'm banking on the latter, that it won't (affect us) and the kids will respond and move on."

WOMEN'S HOCKEY: A brilliant goaltending effort by Tania Pinelli of Niagara University led Canada's Under-22 team to a 2-1 victory over the United States in the third and deciding game of their three-game series. She stopped 37 of 38 shots.

Pinelli of Hamilton, Ont., split the duties with Kim St. Pierre in the series opener won by the U.S., 2-1. Pinelli took the loss stopping 17 of 19 shots. St. Clair was in goal for the second game, won by Canada, 2-0.

Overall, the NU sophomore made 54 saves in 57 shots for a .947 save percentage.

Niagara coach Margot Page wasn't surprised by Pinelli's impressive performance.

"She has been a very consistent goaltender for us," Page said. "For here to perform well in a big game is no surprise to me. Her performance against the U.S. provides her with a great stepping stone towards making the (Canadian) Senior National Team."

At Niagara, Pinelli was named to the 1998-99 ECAC All-Rookie team and earned honorable mention All-ECAC. She finished the season with a 3.38 goals-against average and a .915 save percentage. In the Purple Eagles' inaugural season, she put together an 11-15-2 record.

MEN'S SOCCER: Niagara put just three shots on goal in a 3-0 loss at Robert Morris. Matt Talarico made six saves in goal for the Purple Eagles.

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