George Guido: Big 33 game calls on Kiski Area’s ‘Beef’

Saturday, April 2, 2022 | 6:53 PM

Kiski Area offensive lineman Brandon Lawhorn-Moore was named to this year’s Pennsylvania Big 33 team.

The 6-foot-5, 295-pound Lawhorn-Moore, affectionately known as “Beef” to those in the Kiski Area community, was named to the team to replace Drew Shelton of Downingtown West, who had to opt of the game because of “unforeseen circumstances.”

The Big 33 game is slated for Memorial Day, May 30, at 2 p.m. at Bishop McDevitt’s Rocco Ortenzio Stadium in Harrisburg. The game pits the top 33 high school seniors from the 2021 season against a similar team from Maryland.

Lawhorn-Moore will be the first local player named to the Big 33 since Valley’s Toney Clemons, a 2007 team member. The last Cavaliers player to make the Big 33 was Scott McKillop in 2004.

The Big 33 is best known for producing future Super Bowl participants. All 56 Super Bowls have had at least one player who participated in the Big 33 game.

The late Nolan “NoJo” Jones of Ken High was first local player to make the Big 33 roster in 1957, the game’s inaugural year.

Softball rules changes

While there were no real rules changes for high school baseball this season, there were several changes and clarifications in softball, as declared by the National Federation of state High School Associations (NFHS).

One regards unanchored bases. If a batter/runner reaches first, second or third base and the base is dislodged, the runner won’t be called out if a safe call was already made before the base was dislodged.

Another change deals with the interference rule.

A runner now is considered out if either foot touches outside the running lane.

“Based on previous wording, some umpires established their ruling on whether the runner’s foot was on the ground or in the air when the interference took place,” said Sandy Searcy, NFHS director of sports and liaison to the NFHS softball committee. “The new wording more adequately describes the intent of the rule and will provide more consistent enforcement.”

Another piece of advice: don’t try to sneak an already-disqualified bat back into a game.

Now, a batter who uses a bat previously removed from the game will be called out and the offending player and head coach will be restricted to the dugout for the remainder of the game.

Hail to the Victors

Erie’s Villa Maria Academy, a girls school since 1892, will close at the end of the school year and be consolidated with Erie Cathedral Prep, all male for 121 years. The Victors had an incredible run with three PIAA titles from 2009-11, 11 District 10 titles in 30 years and a 220-39 record over the last 10 seasons.

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