Hempfield honors longtime softball coaches Kalp, Albright, Mello

Friday, May 3, 2019 | 9:27 PM

Hempfield honored the longtime softball coaching trio of head coach Bob Kalp and assistants Dick Albright and Ray Mello in a pregame ceremony Friday at Robert D. Kalp Field.

The Spartans’ field was named after Kalp a few years ago, but Albright and Mello each had their names attached to the dugouts — Albright on the home side and Mello the visitors’ — as a thank-you gesture for their 23 years with one of the WPIAL’s elite programs.

“These men have meant so much to our program for so many years,” Hempfield athletic director Greg Meisner said. “They have been father figures, including to me, and lately grandfather figures to hundreds of girls they have coached.”

With Kalp (74), Albright (73) and Mello (80) running the program, Hempfield has won six WPIAL championships (1998, 2009, 2015, ‘16, ‘17 and ‘18), and four PIAA titles (1999, ‘16, ‘17 and ‘18).

Hempfield went 27-0 in ‘17 and last year became the first team to win three straight state titles in the PIAA’s largest classification. The Spartans have 16 section titles and can make it 17 with a win next week over Pine-Richland.

Kalp, who began as an assistant at Hempfield in 1995, was named Flo Softball’s National Coach of the year two seasons ago.

He has a career record of 412 wins, 104 losses and a tie.

“We started coaching together at West Point Little League,” Kalp said. “Then, when I became the head coach (at Hempfield), they decided to join me. It’s been a good situation.”

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@tribweb.com or via Twitter .


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