(Posted July 19, 2011)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Juniata College men's basketball has received commitments from two high school student-athletes and two transfers to attend Juniata starting this fall, while competing for the Eagles and head coach Greg Curley on the basketball court.

Joining the Eagles this fall will be freshmen Zack Barker (Lincoln University, Pa./Avon Grove) and Alex Mace (Bethel Park, Pa./Bethel Park). Sophomore Ronnie Fudala (Hopwood, Pa./Laurel Highlands) will be joining the Juniata roster after transferring from Case Western Reserve University, while Kevin Stapleton (Indiana, Pa./Indiana) will be transferring to Juniata from Pitt-Johnstown.

Barker, a 6-3, 220-pound forward, was selected for the Pennsylvania Hoops Roundball Showcase All-Star games in early April, after captaining Avon Grove during his senior season for coach Jesse Drelick. A three-year letterwinner, Barker played for Avon Grove's district playoff squad during his sophomore season. The son of Scott and Carolyn Barker, Zack plans on studying psychology and sociology at Juniata.

"Zack is a big, physical, competitor who will make a nice addition to our front line. He will add depth and toughness where we need it most," said Curley.

Mace, a 6-6, 200-pound center, was a three-year letterwinner at Bethel Park, where he was a National Honor Society member and graduated with distinguished honors. The son of David and Lisa Mace, Alex will study physics at Juniata College through the pre-engineering program.

"Alex is a very talented player with the ability to play with his back to the basket," said Curley. "Having competed in arguably the state's toughest section we expect him to make a quick transition to the college level. We expect big things from him over his four years and think he is a perfect fit for our program."

Fudala, a 6-0, 170-pound guard, played for the sectional championship team at Laurel Highlands in 2009 and 2010, earning all-county and all-section honors. The son of Eric and Rita Fudala, he also lettered in cross country and track and field for two years.

Last season at Case Western Reserve, Fudala played in six games during his freshman season and logged four points and two rebounds.

"Ron was one of our top perimeter recruits coming out of high school, but a knee injury slowed him down the last half of his senior year and all of last year," said Curley. "If we can get him back to 100%, he has a real chance to be a significant contributor this season. He has great quickness, good instincts, and shoots the ball very well from deep." â?¨

Stapleton, a 6-3, 200-pound guard, was a four-year letterwinner for coach Jeff Reed at Indiana High School, where he was a three-time all-star selection by the Indiana Gazette. He earned all-section honors in his sophomore, junior, and senior seasons, and finished his high school career with over 1,300 points and 210 career three-point field goals. A four-year letterwinner in track and field and a three-year letterwinner in football, Stapleton earned Indiana Gazette all-star and all-conference honors in football in both his junior and senior seasons.

The son of Jim and Claudia Stapleton, Kevin will be studying pre-physical therapy at Juniata. He saw action in 18 games last season at Pitt-Johnstown, scoring 15 points with 17 rebounds and four steals.

"Kevin is a difference maker. His blend of size, skill, and athleticism make him a perfect fit for our system and style of play, and we expect him to make an immediate impact," said Curley. "He provides us another legitimate scoring threat with his abilities to shoot the 3, put the ball on the floor, and post up. The sky is the limit for Kevin - he is exactly the type of player that we think can help put us in the hunt for a Landmark Championship."

Juniata finished its 2010-11 campaign with a 12-13 overall record, 5-9 in the Landmark Conference with a sixth-place finish. The Eagles return their top five scorers from a year ago, led by senior guard Dan Sekulski (13.8 ppg, 3.4 rpg). Head coach Greg Curley begins his 11th season on the Juniata bench, where he has amassed more victories than any other coach in program history with a 117-139 record. The Eagles open their 2011-12 regular season on Tuesday, Nov. 15, when they host Carnegie Mellon University at 7:30 p.m. at the Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center.


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Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.