Penn Hills baseball working to make upgrades after difficult season

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Sunday, May 22, 2022 | 9:01 AM


Penn Hills baseball coach Rodney Stubbs doesn’t shy away from the reality of the matter. When it came to performance on the baseball diamond, the Indians had a difficult season.

The team came in with a lot of optimism after opening the season with all of their players eligible. However, this group never quite clicked.

Penn Hills finished the year 3-14 overall and 2-10 in Section 2-5A.

“This season was unbelievable with some of the things that happened,” Stubbs said. “It was my worst season as coach.”

However, this season helped identify what Penn Hills would need going forward. In order to improve the program, the Indians needed to make sure their players had the right tools in order to be successful.

“We’ve been working with a lot of old equipment,” Stubbs said. “One of the things we identified was we needed to upgrade that equipment to help make better ballplayers.”

Penn Hills was able to make progress in that area. Between coaches, boosters and players, they raised $2,000 to get a new pitching machine.

Stubbs is hoping to add more things as they progress.

The Indians closed the season on a strong note. Penn Hills won two of its final three games by sweeping section rival Woodland Hills — winning 6-5 on the road and 9-2 at home.

The Indians’ only other victory came in a 14-0 win over St. Joseph.

“I thought we had good leadership that helped to create a family atmosphere,” Stubbs said. “I thought out of all the teams in Class 5A, we had one of the better atmospheres.”

Seniors Dallen Banks and Jordan Sullivan led the team in batting average, hitting .317 and .302, respectively. Sullivan hit the team’s lone home run of the season and drove in eight runs. Banks recorded seven RBIs for Penn Hills.

The Indians hope if they can continue to make improvements, they can see progress on the field next season. Penn Hills hasn’t had a winning season since 2014 and last made the WPIAL playoffs in 2010.

“It was a bad season, but our kids never quit,” Stubbs said. “Despite our struggles, the kids didn’t get frustrated.”

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