June 8, 2017
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Tyler Pfister and Jake Withers, who completed their Ohio State careers in the spring, have been recognized as Scholar All-Americans by the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association. The USILA Scholar All-America program was established in 1989 to recognize student-athletes with senior standing from USILA member institutions who have distinguished themselves academically, athletically and as citizens of their communities.
This marks the sixth year in a row at least one Buckeye has earned a spot on the USILA list. Joe Bonanni and Matt Kawamoto were the program’s first honorees in 2012, Dominique Alexander, Logan Schuss and Trey Wilkes were selected in 2013, Joe Meurer was recognized in 2014, in 2015 Turner Evans and Christopher May were honored and last year Carter Brown and Robby Haus were selected.
Pfister, a native of Columbus, Ohio, finished his first year of graduate school in sport administration in 2017 after receiving his bachelor’s degree in communication in Spring 2016. A five-time Ohio State Scholar-Athlete and three-time Academic All-Big Ten choice, he was a two-time captain for the Buckeyes. He played in a career-high 20 games in 2017 as the Buckeyes notched a program-record 16 wins, with a personal-best nine goals, five assists and 14 points. In his career with the Scarlet and Gray Pfister saw action in 55 games and had 20 goals, 11 assists and 31 points. He was the Michael R. Breschi Memorial Scholarship recipient, Ohio State’s selection for the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award and a finalist for the Yeardley Reynolds Love Unsung Hero Award.
Withers, a team captain from Peterborough, Ontario, earned his bachelor’s degree in economics this spring and is a three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection and four-time Ohio State Scholar-Athlete. A USILA Second Team All-American as a faceoff specialist, he was fourth in the NCAA in faceoff winning percentage in 2017 (.647) and ranked seventh with 7.57 groundballs per game, leading the Big Ten in both categories. The Big Ten Specialist of the Year for a second straight year and a two-time First Team All-Big Ten choice, Withers won 267-of-406 groundballs on the year as the Buckeyes reached the NCAA Championship Game. He ends his career as the team’s leader in groundballs (344) and faceoff wins (606) and had a .598 career faceoff winning percentage, the best since at least 2000, while playing in 63 games for the Scarlet and Gray.