Softball

Shortstop Joslyn Hostetler had the second-most hits on the Pine-Richland roster last season.
Pine-Richland softball focused on adding punch at the plate
March 23, 2020
Pine-Richland softball coach Gary Shepard has always emphasized pitching and defense as the core tenets of his philosophy for winning games on the diamond.

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Norwin’s Alex Gabauer (top) and Penn-Trafford’s Bobby Lane are two of the local players trying to stay sharp during the PIAA-mandated shutdown because of the coronavirus outbreak.
Local ballplayers trying to stay sharp during coronavirus’ spring shutdown
March 21, 2020
Max McDowell was set to begin his sixth season in the minor leagues.

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Yough’s Kaylyn Odelli (right) will move from shortstop to catcher this season.
Yough softball returns 7 starters, expects championship-caliber season
March 20, 2020
Yough boasts one of the steadiest, most successful softball programs in the WPIAL, but the Cougars entered spring practice with an unusual feeling: skepticism.

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Valley catcher Madison Gatto prepares for the 2019 season March 19, 2019 at Valley High
With youth and experience, Valley softball is looking to break its playoff hiatus
The Valley softball team hasn’t made the WPIAL playoffs in eight years, but the seven returning seniors are hoping to end that streak.

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Penn Hills pitcher Yasmine Logan competes against Hampton March 26, 2019 at Hampton.
Penn Hills softball has building blocks in place for possible playoff run
Even though the Penn Hills softball program hasn’t reached the WPIAL playoffs in over a decade, the Indians remain optimistic that this year could end their 13-year playoff drought.

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Southmoreland’s Charity Henderson competes against South Allegheny on April 18, 2019, at South Allegheny.
Southmoreland softball hopes to make run at another title
March 19, 2020
When Southmoreland softball coach Todd Bunner addressed his team March 12, they talked about the future and hoped the 2020 season would continue in the near future.

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St. Joseph’s Stella Swanson delivers against Springdale Tuesday, April 2, 2019, at Kotecki Memorial Park.
St. Joseph softball brings back plenty of experience
The St. Joseph softball program enjoyed a two-year run to the WPIAL playoffs in 2017 and ‘18, the first two such seasons in its history.

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Springdale coach Anthony Pototo celebrates with Brianna Thompson after she scored during their game against St. Joseph Tuesday, April 2, 2019, at Kotecki Memorial Park.
Springdale softball hopes to use last season as springboard to more success
March 18, 2020
It was a season to remember for Springdale’s softball team.

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Frazier’s Emi Curcio scores past Brandywine Heights catcher Naomi Fay during the PIAA Class 2A state championship game Friday, June 14, 2019, at Penn State University.
PIAA petition gets more support than Frazier senior Curcio expected
March 17, 2020
When Emi Curcio typed up a petition to the PIAA last week, urging the state’s governing body for high school sports to postpone, not cancel, the spring sports season, she couldn’t have imagined its outreach.

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Norwin’s Alexandra Dillner smiles as she rounds the bases after her second home run during a game against Pine-Richland Monday, April 8, 2019, at Norwin High School.
Norwin softball aims to repeat section championship behind deep pitching staff
(Editor’s note: The PIAA has postponed the start of the spring sports season because of concerns over the covid-19 pandemic.)

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Plum shortstop Mackenzie Lake fields a ground ball during practice on Thursday Friday, March 13, 2020.
After disappointing finish last season, Plum softball ready to bounce back
March 16, 2020
Last season didn’t end the way the Plum softball team wanted it to.

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Mt. Pleasant pitcher Mary Smithnosky drives a ball back to home plate on a run during a practice drill with teammates Thursday, March 12, 2020 at softball practice at Mt. Pleasant Area High School.
After losing ace to graduation, Mt. Pleasant softball eager to prove doubters wrong
Mt. Pleasant had its 15 minutes of fame last season when it made the MaxPreps national softball rankings.

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Junior pitcher and infielder Hannah Yorty is one of Monessen’s top returning players.
Monessen softball team will play under another new coach
March 15, 2020
For the second time in as many seasons, the Monessen softball team has a new coach.

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Leechburg pitcher Emma Ritchie was a first team Valley News Dispatch all-star last season.
Leechburg softball team readies for run at 34th straight playoff berth
The coronavirus pandemic might do something other WPIAL softball teams have failed to do: stop Leechburg’s playoff streak.

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Knoch’s Sophie Brandon stretches for a throw during a practice on March 13, 2020.
Knoch softball looking to build on historic 2019 season
March 14, 2020
After one of its best seasons in 2019, the Knoch softball team heads into this season with a lot of confidence.

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Ligonier Valley senior pitcher Jane Garver is a Robert Morris recruit.
Ligonier Valley softball team eyes longer postseason run
Another successful softball season at Ligonier Valley in 2019 abruptly ended with an early exit from the postseason.

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Frazier’s Emi Curcio scores past Brandywine Heights catcher Naomi Fay during the PIAA Class 2A state championship game Friday, June 14, 2019, at Penn State University.
Postpone, don’t cancel spring sports: Frazier softball player starts online petition to PIAA
A Frazier senior softball player has started an online petition to influence the PIAA’s upcoming decision on what to do with the spring sports season in the state.

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Bishop Canevin’s Bella DeMark scores behind Greensburg Central Catholic’s Anna Vitale during first round WPIAL A Softball action at Fox Chapel Area High School.
Signal Item softball preview: Teams hoping to improve on last season’s performance
As softball season nears, the three Carnegie-area teams are focused on making the playoffs.

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Kiski Area senior Brooke Bires works on her swing during a practice on Tuesday, March 10, 2020.
Kiski Area softball hungry for bounce-back season
March 13, 2020
Last season didn’t go as expected for the Kiski Area softball team, which battled a lot of adversity along the way.

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Hampton infielder Tanner Gill takes a late throw during a scrimmage game against Butler March 12, 2020.
Future of spring sports season will be considered Monday by WPIAL board
The PIAA already postponed the end of winter sports season, but now spring sports might also be in danger.

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