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May 10, 2005

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Jackie Barto, Ohio State women’s ice hockey head coach, announced four new members of the 2005-06 freshman class Tuesday. Liana Bonanno, Megan Hostasek, Morgan Marziali and Whitney Miller each signed NCAA National Letters of Intent to attend The Ohio State University and play hockey beginning with the 2005-06 season. The four student-athletes join Farmington Hills, Mich., native Kelly Cahill and Hayley Klassen, of Warman, Saskatchewan, who signed with Ohio State in the early signing period.

“We are excited about the incoming freshman class,” Barto said. “They are outstanding individuals and committed to succeeding both in the classroom and on the ice. The recruits will bring numerous skills and talents to our program. They all come from strong hockey backgrounds and possess a great passion for the game. The class will make a strong contribution to our program both on and off the ice and will be outstanding representatives of The Ohio State University.”

Liana Bonanno, a native of Mount Sinai, N.Y., has been the starting goalie for the Berkshire School hockey team since 2003. With 11 years of hockey experience, Bonanno also competed on the Sound Shore Warriers club team for three years. The Sound Shore Warriors were the New York runners-up in 2004. With Berkshire, Bonanno won the E.G. Watkins Tournament title in 2004 and the team advanced to the New England semifinals. Bonanno has received many honors, including being named the Most Outstanding Goaltender at the 2003 and 2004 Hockey Night in Boston tournaments. Bonanno competed at the 2002 and 2003 USA Select Festival Camps. She also was a four-year letterwinner in track and field, earning several honors including being named a top prospect in 2002, all-league in 2003 and finished fourth in the New England league in discus in 2004.

“Liana is an outstanding athlete,” Barto said. “She has good quickness, agility and is very competitive on the ice. She has strong fundamental skills and an excellent work ethic. We are excited to have Liana be part of our program.”

A native of Kimberley, British Columbia, Megan Hostasek competed for the Warner Warriors for the last two years. Recording 26 points in her senior campaign, Hostasek assisted the Warriors to the 2004-05 Alberta Major Midget Female Hockey League title. A 5-foot-9-inch defenseman guided Team British Columbia to a third-place finish at the 2005 Women’s Under-18 Hockey Challenge in Salmon Arm, British Columbia. Hostasek earned the Most Sportsmanlike Player award at the U-18 Challenge. For the 2002-03 year, Hostasek was named the Selkirk Secondary School Female Athlete of the Year. Aside from hockey, Hostasek also was a four-year letterwinner in soccer, a two-year letterwinner in volleyball and earned a letter in both basketball and softball.

“We are pleased Megan has chosen Ohio State,” Barto said. “She is a solid defender with strong skills. She will bring a good presence on the ice and possesses a strong shot from the point. She sees the ice well and has a strong feel for the game.”

Morgan Marziali, of St. Mary’s Ontario, is a four-year starter on the St. Michael’s High School team and the London Devilettes club team. Marziali guided St. Michael’s to three conference championships and Team Ontario to a gold medal at the 2005 Women’s Under-18 Hockey Challenge in Salmon Arm, British Columbia. Over the course of her club hockey career, Marziali has served as an assistant captain or captain, earned five provincial medals (1 gold, 3 silver and 1 bronze) and won two Silversticks tournaments. A multi-sport athlete, Marziali also was a four-year starter in basketball and competed in golf and track and field, earning league and provincial championships in all three sports.

“Morgan is a strong-skating forward who has excellent speed and quickness,” Barto said. “She plays with a tremendous amount of energy on the ice and will create opportunities with her skills and skating abilities. We are excited Morgan has chosen to be a Buckeye.”

A native of Anchorage, Alaska, Whitney Miller attended and competed two years for the North American Hockey Academy in Vermont. In her senior season, Miller tied for fifth on the squad with 39 points, 25 goals and 14 assists. In the 2004-05 season, Miller guided her squad to first-places finishes at the Rochester Fire on Ice Tournament, Northwood Prep New Year’s Tournament and the Charles River Presidents’ Day Tournament and took home the bronze medal at the Culver Invitational National Tournament. Miller also participated in several USA Hockey development camps. In addition to hockey, Miller participated in soccer, was a student government representative and served on the student advisory board.

“We are excited to add Whitney to our program,” Barto said. “She is an aggressive defenseman who will bring additional size to the blueline. She has a strong feel for the game and can generate offense with a strong shot from the point.”