Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Holding the Line Gateway Grad Gains Recognition as Standout Center for Thiel College

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Holding the Line Gateway Grad Gains Recognition as Standout Center for Thiel College

Article excerpt

Entering his senior season, Thiel College center Jason Crystol believes his Tomcats team has plenty of unfinished business to deal with following a 3-7 season that saw the team lose its first five games.

Crystol's efforts have been recognized as he's been named to the USA Football News Preseason All-America fourth team.

"It's a great honor for me and for the program," said Crystol, a 21-year-old communications major who played his high school football under Terry Smith at Gateway. "It definitely adds motivation to the way I prepared this summer and going into the season. What really matters to me is how the team ends up."

What the Tomcats were able to take from the 2013 season is that they won three of their last five games. Crystol, a 5-foot-10, 245- pound senior from Monroevlle, believes the strong finish is a nice springboard into this season.

"It also gave us the thought that we need to start faster, with a couple of wins" he said. "If we can do that, it will make the season go a lot smoother and have a winning record overall."

Thiel begins the season on the road at 7 p.m. on Sept. 6 with a game at Allegheny College.

There were some notable positives for the Tomcats in 2013 as Crystol anchored a line that allowed the running backs to rush for more than 2,000 yards.

In addition to the national accolade, Crystol earned All- Presidents' Athletic Conference honors. He has plenty of confidence in his linemates. …

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