Jeannette’s Tre Cunningham named Tribune-Review’s Westmoreland Baseball Player of the Year
By: Paul Schofield
Saturday, June 30, 2018 | 9:39 PM
PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Jeannette, Senior, Pitcher/infielder
Jeannette senior Tre Cunningham did his best to get his team back to the WPIAL Class A championship to defend the Jayhawks title.
The lanky right-handed pitcher/infielder batted .600, with 23 RBIs and 22 runs scored. He had 27 hits, which included four doubles. He also was 4-1 was a save and a 1.91 ERA. He struck out 43 and walked 11.
Those accomplishments were a big reason why Cunningham was named the Tribune-Review's Westmoreland Baseball Player of the Year.
The Section 2-A all-star also was the Tribune-Review Basketball Player of the Year.
But baseball is his passion.
He hasn't made a final decision on his college future, but his considering La Roche and is talking to other colleges about playing both sports.
Cunningham also was a wide receiver and kicker on the WPIAL and PIAA champion football team.
What are your thoughts about your senior season?
I just went out and played this year. I wasn't thinking of any honors. I just focused on my craft and got better every day. At practice I worked hard, competed with my teammates and made it happen.
Jeannette won the WPIAL title in 2017; what was different this season?
I don't think there was a difference, we just got outplayed. In the playoffs, I had to pitch in the quarterfinals and didn't get a shot at Vincentian. That had something to do with it. Regardless, we still went out and played our best.
What does coach Marcus Clarkson mean to you and the program?
Coach Clarkson didn't put too much pressure on me. He knew my abilities and the talents of our team. He worked us hard in practice and got us prepared. We all had a part or a job to do. In the end, we didn't make it happen, but we still accomplished a lot.
Did the extra long football and basketball seasons affect your play?
We didn't have much of a break going from one sport to another. I don't think it had a total (affect) on how we performed, but I think it had a total on our physical ability and how we got tired.
Who is your favorite baseball player and team?
My favorite player is Andrew McCutcheon. I liked his swagger, and I tried to couple his batting stance. I used to like the Pirates, but they've messed up, and I'm not happy with them. Now I like the Giants.
Did you watch the College World Series?
I watched a little, I'd rather watch the highlights. I like playing baseball. I don't like to watch it. It's boring to me. When I do watch, I listen to the announcers and listen to what they say and the tips they offer.
What stands out about the baseball season?
It's how we became a family like we did in football and basketball. We bonded.
What is something you must do to improve your game?
I have to get stronger. I'm a little frail.
Yough, Jr., P
Pitt, Penn State, Columbia and other Division I schools are keeping an eye on this 6-foot-4 lefty who led the WPIAL with 77 strikeouts in 42 innings. He was 3-3, with one save and a 1.66 ERA and a WHIP of 0.90. He hit .300, with two doubles and 10 RBIs.
Hempfield, Sr., SS
This Seton Hill recruit had another big season for the Spartans. He batted .426, with 25 runs scored, 29 hits, a team-high nine doubles and 15 RBIs. He's also an outstanding defensive player with great range who helped Hempfield win the Section 2-6A title and reach the WPIAL semifinals. He has a shot to start his freshman season in college.
Franklin Regional, Sr., P
A first-team all-section selection, Frey handed section champion Laurel Highlands its second loss of the season. This lefty had three wins and one save with a 2.25 ERA. He struck out 70 in 46 2⁄3 innings. He is spending the summer playing in Florida with his brother.
Hempfield, Jr., OF
This junior was a clutch performer at the plate for the Spartans. He batted .431, with 20 runs scored, 28 hits and 23 RBIs. His power numbers included four doubles, six triples, three home runs and an OPS of 1.353.
Greensburg C.C., JR., OF
Kurpiel was one of many players who helped the Centurions reach the WPIAL and PIAA Class A semifinals. He batted. 582, with 28 runs scored, had a team-high 32 hits, seven doubles and 25 stolen bases. His quickness on the bases bothered opponents.
Greensburg Salem, Jr., SS
Oberdorf, a second-team all-star in 2017, batted .364, with 17 runs, 24 hits, 10 doubles and 18 RBIs. He and Wicker formed a strong one-two punch at the top of order and were a big reason why the Golden Lions upset No. 1 Blackhawk and advanced to the semifinals.
Ligonier valley, JR., P/SS
He hit .383 and led the team in runs (29), hits (23), stolen bases (19) and doubles (6). He also was 3-0 with a 0.56 ERA in 25 innings pitched. He's also considered a strong defensive shortstop with outstanding range and defensive instincts.
Penn-Trafford, Sr., C
The Oklahoma State commit is a two-time all-star. Despite opponents pitching around him (23 walks), he batted .300, with four home runs, 17 RBIs, and had .556 on-base percentage.
Greensburg Salem, Jr., P/INF
This junior had a special season at the plate and on the mound. He batted .483, with 17 runs and a team-high 29 hits, including five doubles, three home runs and a team-high 19 RBIs. On the hill, he was 3-1 with a 2.18 ERA. He struck out 58 and walked 35.
Jake Anderson, Hempfield, Sr., P
Griffin Clark, Latrobe, Sr., INF/P
Cory Fleming, Monessen, Sr., P
Josh Hoffman, Belle Vernon, Jr., SS
Zach Mancz, Penn-Trafford, Sr., 1B
Andrew Rosenberg, G. Salem, Sr., P/CF
Jordan Sabol, Penn-Trafford, Jr., CF
Conner Watt, Derry, Sr., P
Max Zimmerman, Southmore., Sr., SS
Nick Zona, Norwin, Sr., INF