Skip to main content
University at Buffalo

UB Today

A publication of the University at Buffalo Alumni Association

Fall 2013





Join the Alumni Association

UBAA on Facebook

To stop receiving the print version and read UB Today online, > click here

To view a virtual version of the print magazine > click here. To view the PDF version of this issue > click here


HansenPhoto: Nils Nilson/Ironman


Hansen Conquers Ironman

Chances are, whatever you were doing on July 28, 2013, was not nearly as grueling a physical experience as the one Jennie Donofrio Hansen, DPT ’09 & BS ’06, conquered. Hansen spent more than a third of that day pushing her physical limits en route to becoming the first female winner of the Ironman Lake Placid.

What exactly is an Ironman competition? It’s an event that puts the casual 5K to shame, simply put. Ironman triathlons consist of a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bicycle ride and finish with a full 26.2-mile marathon. All told, participants cover 140 miles. Hansen finished all that in a mere 9 hours, 35 minutes and 6 seconds. The victory helped her qualify for the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii, scheduled for Oct. 12. It also was sweet coming off of two second-place finishes in Ironman competition.

At Ironman Lake Placid, Hansen was 11 minutes behind the frontrunner after the swim portion, but gained valuable ground by posting the fastest time on the bike. She passed the women’s leader at the 12-mile mark of the marathon, finishing that in 3:05.04.

Hansen hails from Irondequoit, N.Y., near Rochester, where she works as a physical therapist. Hansen was a member of the cross country team at UB, which she attended as an Honors student and recipient of the School of Public Health and Health Professions’ Alfred T. Caffiero Scholarship.


Mack shines on national stage

MackPhoto: Paul Hokanson

The Bulls didn’t win their football season opener at Ohio State on Aug. 31, but at least one member of the team came out on top. Senior linebacker Khalil Mack was named the MAC East Division Defensive Player of the Week after recording a game-high nine tackles, 2.5 sacks and an interception for a touchdown. The game was broadcast nationally on ESPN2, and plenty of NFL draft insiders took notice of Mack’s performance. So did Buckeyes’ coach Urban Meyer, who said Mack’s “stock in the draft just went up a little bit after playing against us.” Mack, who entered the season on four national award watch lists, is expected to be a first-round pick in the 2014 NFL draft in May. Mack’s teammates Branden Oliver and Alex Neutz also were named to preseason award watch lists.

Baseball/Track and field

Kanzler, White are athletes of the year


Recent graduates Jason Kanzler of the baseball team and Shante White of the track and field team were named the 2012-13 UB Athletes of the Year. The baseball team was also honored as UB team of the year.


Kanzler was named the 2013 MAC Player of the Year and earned his second Rawlings Gold Glove Award in June, becoming the first player in the seven-year history of the award to be recognized twice, after he won in 2012 as well.

In the June Major League Baseball draft, he was selected by the Minnesota Twins in the 20th round, and he is currently ending his first professional season as a member of the Gulf Coast League Twins.

For updates on all team schedules, news and tickets go to

White won the 2013 Weight Throw at the MAC Indoor Championships, breaking the school record in the process. She would later finish 15th in the event at the NCAA championships, earning her second team All-American status.

She was one of four women’s college athletes to be named a finalist for the Giant Steps award, given to those who use sport to make positive social change, and who help student-athletes succeed in all aspects of their lives.

Wrestling Alumni

Graber named to USA weightlifting board


UB’s own Mike Graber, MBA ’08 & BS ’04, was elected to a four-year term on the USA Weightlifting national board of directors. The Lancaster, N.Y., native was a member of the wrestling team at UB before taking an interest in Olympic weightlifting in 2002.


Peel named head coach


A proven winner at every level of competitive softball, Trena Peel was announced over the summer as the eighth coach in the history of Buffalo softball. Peel served as head coach at Hampton University, where she led the team to its first MEAC Championship and NCAA Tournament berth since 1996.

Peel spent three seasons at Hampton, improving the team’s win total each season.

A 2003 graduate of LSU with a bachelor of science in kinesiology, Peel played at LSU from 1999 to 2002, where she earned NFCA Second-Team All-American accolades and was a semifinalist for USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year as a senior. She was named SEC Athlete of the Year in 2002 and also was a three-time All-SEC honoree, selected twice to the All-South Regional Team.

Peel was a 1999 USA Junior Olympic softball team member and played on the 2001 USA National Red Team. She also was selected to the USA Elite Team in 2002 and 2003, and she played in the National Pro Fastpitch League.

Compiled by David J. Hill

Sportform links

Sportform Quicklinks



UB in the News

Should I chew gum?

9/30/2015 The benefits of chewing gum -- boosting mood and alertness -- may not include reaching for healthy foods, according to UB's Jennifer Temple.

Rex Ryan notes how two of Bills' first four opponents had extra rest

9/30/2015 The Bills have started the season facing a few teams on extra rest -- an inequity UB researchers have dug into when it comes to the NFL scheduling process.

U.S. appeals court upholds decision that restricts payments to college athletes

9/30/2015 UB's Nellie Drew weighs in on a ruling that states NCAA policies that restrict payments to college athletes violate antitrust laws.

More of UB in the News