While the winter weather gets worse, it's already time to start thinking about baseball.
For the second straight year, St. Bonaventure's Brian Pellegrini has been named a Preseason All-American by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.
The junior was picked to the second team this year after being named to the third team last year. He was the only Atlantic 10 Conference player chosen.
"Being named to the preseason All-America team for the second year in a row is certainly an impressive accomplishment and it is well-deserved in Brian's case," Bona coach Larry Sudbrook said.
Pellegrini will be a starting pitcher and first baseman this season after spending two years as a reliever and right fielder.
Last spring, he was ranked among the A-10 leaders in every major statistical category both at the plate on the mound. He batted .376 with 11 home runs, 52 RBIs, nine doubles, two triples, 44 runs and 13 stolen bases.
On the mound, Pellegrini finished 2-3 with seven saves and a team-low 1.98 ERA (third in the A-10). Pellegrini already holds St. Bonaventure's all-time saves record with 16.
BASKETBALL: The Niagara women signed Jennifer McNamee, Rachele Folino and Jaclyn Konieczka to letters of intent for the 2006-07 season.
McNamee is a 5-foot-9 guard from Oxford, Ohio, with a hot hand from three-point range. She shot a school-record 44 percent from behind the arc as a junior, averaging 14.9 points per game at Oxford High. Her mother, Beth, played at Niagara from 1979-82.
Folino is a 6-0 forward from Novi, Mich., averaging 11.3 points and is a 44.2 percent shooter, while Konieczka is a 6-0 forward from Parma, Ohio, who averaged 16.2 points and 14.7 rebounds as a junior.
SWIMMING: Allie Dean (Kenmore West) is enjoying a productive senior year at Rutgers. Dean won three individual events earlier this month at the Super Splash Invitational hosted by Rutgers -- the 100 and 200-yard breaststroke events and the 200 individual medley. The Scarlet Knights are 25th in the latest national poll on collegeswimming.com and Dean holds top-100 times in all three of her individual events. Her best ranking is 28th in the 200 breaststroke.
TENNIS: Buffalo native Lori Sabatose, the women's tennis coach and student recreation center director at Clarion (Pa.) University, was recently named a USTA/ITA Community Service Award Sectional Winner.