Belle Vernon senior duo focuses on future

Sunday, May 3, 2020 | 9:13 PM

Editor’s note: This is the first in an 18-part series profiling nominees for the Westmoreland County Scholar-Athlete Excellence Awards.

Belle Vernon senior track star Hannah Seitzinger was looking forward toward one more attempt at being a WPIAL and PIAA 400-meter dash champion.

But the coronavirus pandemic ended her senior year of sports three months early.

Classmate Mitchell Pohlot completed his basketball and football seasons, and the Leopards reached the WPIAL finals in both sports. He averaged 12 points and 10 rebounds in basketball and earned honorable mention All-Big 9 Conference honors as a tight end.

And while graduation remains, both have been nominated to represent their school at the annual Westmoreland County Scholar-Athlete awards banquet and the Excellence Award, which is hosted by Judge John J. Driscoll.

The banquet was scheduled for April 27 but postponed. Judge Driscoll and his committee still are hoping to hold the banquet sometime this summer.

“I was looking forward to the season,” Seitzinger said. “I really thought I had a chance of placing high on the podium. I was super bummed out that things were canceled.”

So Seitzinger, who will run track at Duquesne, has been busy finishing school online and getting ready to do some workouts for college. For Belle Vernon, she ran the 100, 200, 400, 800 and was on two relays.

She mainly will concentrate on the 400 at Duquesne.

“I’m super excited about going to Duquesne,” Seitzinger said. “The track is on campus, and they’re going to build a bubble.”

Graduation is scheduled for June 3.

“It’s super heartbreaking to hear the news that school and track was over,” Seitzinger said. “I wanted to finish strong with my classmates, teammates and coaches.”

Pohlot is unsure about his future. He would like to attend the United States Air Force Academy. He was denied once, but he reapplied and is awaiting word. His other options are Pitt or Drexel.

He wants to be a surgeon.

Pohlot said he was proud of how the senior class came together on the football field and on the basketball court.

“We brought back pride and unity to the school and gave a boost to the Mon Valley,” Pohlot said. “I don’t know if any school in the Mon Valley has done that before.

“We came together on the football field, and the basketball season was unbelievable. The Lancaster Catholic game was so draining, but everyone stepped up that night in the loss.”

Pohlot is unsure if he’ll play a sport in college. He may walk on if given a shot.

He was a tight end and defensive end on the football team and a forward on the basketball team.

“I learned if you want to excel in athletics, you have to keep working,” Pohlot said. “Most athletes want to be good, but right now it’s an offseason for everyone.”

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at or via Twitter .


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