Scholastic Notebook – 05/22/2016

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Sunday, May 22, 2016 | 4:59 PM


Plum’s Alex Kirilloff has a good chance to be selected in the first round of the June 9 Major League Baseball draft. Teams love his bat and also like the way he plays the outfield.

At Plum, they also love the way he pitches.

Kirilloff has a bright future as an outfielder, but at the present, he is one dominating pitcher. He is certainly one of the best hurlers in the WPIAL.

When Plum defeated Peters Township, 2-0, in the WPIAL Class AAAA quarterfinals Thursday, Kirilloff led the way with his hitting – and pitching. He had a double and triple at the plate. But he also pitched six innings , struck out 11 and gave up only one hit.

For the season, Kirilloff’s pitching numbers are among the best around. Plum coach Carl Vollmer has not overworked Kirilloff, but the senior left-hander is 6-0. He has pitched only 38 innings and his ERA is a tremendous 0.73. He has allowed only 11 hits and has struck out 53.

Kirilloff finished the regular season as the No. 7 hitter in the WPIAL with a .544 average.

How high will Kirilloff go in the draft? You can never be too sure. But a few recent mock drafts on the internet had him going anywhere from pick No. 14, to 17, to 18. Baseball America is widely recognized as the authority on rating high school and college players for the draft. A mock draft in Baseball America a week ago had Kirilloff going No. 14.

Young Guns

Canon-McMillan has made it to the Class AAAA Semifinals, and the Big Macs are doing it with a youth movement on the mound.

Sophomore Zach Rohaley started Canon-McMillan’s first playoff game Monday and pitched until the fifth inning. He gave way to freshman Cam Weston, who worked the rest of the way in a 7-6 victory against North Hills.

Rohaley had only two days rest. But under PIAA and WPIAL rules, a pitcher can work five innings and needs only two days rest before he can pitch again. So, Canon-McMillan brought back Rohaley in the quarterfinals Thursday and Rohaley went the distance in a 5-1 victory against Pine-Richland. That’s a lot of work in four days for a sophomore pitcher.

Young Guns II

The top three in strikeouts in WPIAL softball during the regular season are either in ninth or 10th grade.

Belle Vernon sophomore Bailey Parshall led with 210 strikeouts. Laurel freshman Kayla Ruperto was second and Monessen sophomore Dana Vatakis third.

Son of Littlefield

According to the Post-Gazette’s statistics for the regular season, the 24th-leading hitter in the entire WPIAL is the son of a Pirates former general manager.

Derrick Littlefield hit .488 for Sewickley Academy this season. He is the son of former GM David Littlefield.

Blackhawk Blanks

Remember two years ago when Blackhawk had all-world pitcher Brendan McKay? McKay didn’t give a run the entire season until he was defeated by West Allegheny in the WPIAL Class AAA title game.

Blackhawk doesn’t have an ace the caliber of McKay, but the Cougars apparently have plenty of pitching. The Cougars didn’t give up a run in two playoff games against South Fayette and West Allegheny.

Gold Measured in Watts

Micah Watts brought West Mifflin High School some track and field gold medals Thursday, even though he doesn’t attend West Mifflin.

Watts lives in West Mifflin, but goes to Propel Andrews Street, a charter school. Under PIAA rules, a student-athlete can attend a charter school and compete in athletics at his home school, only if the charter school doesn’t offer that sport.

Notre Dame Gets Jurkovec

There was big news on the WPIAL football recruiting front earlier this week when Pine-Richland star sophomore quarterback Phil Jurkovec made a verbal commitment to Notre Dame. Even though he is only a sophomore, Jurkovec had scholarship offers already from schools across the country, including Pitt, Penn State, Ohio State and Alabama.

Jurkovec is the first WPIAL quarterback to choose Notre Dame since North Allegheny’s Paul Failla in 1991. But Jurkovec is the fourth WPIAL player to make a commitment to the Fighting Irish. The others are all juniors – Central Catholic linebacker David Adams and lineman Kurt Hinish, and North Allegheny lineman Josh Lugg.

It has been a recruiting bonanza for Notre Dame in Western Pennsylvania over the past year. The last WPIAL player to sign with Notre Dame was Montour defensive back E.J. Banks in 2009.

Davies Not Rehired

There was some controversy this week at Leechburg High School when Damian Davies was not rehired as basketball coach, much to the chagrin of some parents and community members, who showed up at a school board meeting to support Davies.

Davies was Leechburg’s coach for 12 seasons and won a WPIAL Class A title in 2007.

Davies’ firing comes on the heels of another controversy during the season when allegations of hazing and bullying surfaced in the Leechburg basketball program and caused police to investigate. No charges were ever filed against Davies.

WPIAL Matters

The WPIAL board of directors voted earlier this week to give an extra year of eligibility to Aliquippa football player DiMantae Bronaugh. Bronaugh was expected to be a top running back on Aliquippa’s team last season, but did not play because of leukemia. Bronaugh had to go through treatments for leukemia and the treatments forced him to not attend school.

It is not totally certain if Bronaugh will be cleared by doctors to play next season.

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