Talented young players headline Trib HSSN Softball All-Stars

Wednesday, June 30, 2021 | 9:01 AM

The 2021 WPIAL softball season proved two things were true.

First, diamond action was sorely missed after the 2020 season was canceled due to the covid-19 pandemic.

Second, the future of district softball has a very bright future.

Half of the TribLive HSSN Softball All-Star Team is underclassmen.

So while the five seniors prepare to continue their careers at the next level, the three juniors and two sophomores will try to build on what they accomplished at the plate, in the circle and on defense this spring.

Five all-stars were also members of district champion teams, with two winning double gold after adding a state championship to their golden season.

There were a lot of players that excelled both in the circle and at the plate in the WPIAL in 2021.

While all can’t be honored here, we tip our caps to those that made the TribLive HSSN Softball All-Star Team in this comeback season.

Trib HSSN Softball All-Stars

Reagan Milliken

Bethel Park, Sr., SS

The Ohio State recruit was a force for a Bethel Park team loaded with talent and victories. Milliken hit .660 (33 of 50) with 11 home runs, 28 runs scored and 37 RBIs. She had a .712 on-base percentage and a 1.460 slugging percentage. The shortstop had a .923 fielding percentage as she helped Bethel Park win its first outright section title and its first WPIAL championship.

Sandra Soltes

Bethel Park, Jr., C

The Pitt recruit batted .500 (26 for 52) with eight home runs, 18 runs scored and 26 RBIs. She had a .581 on-base percentage and a 1.057 slugging percentage. However, Soltes saved her best game for the biggest stage when she hit three home runs and drove in eight runs in the Black Hawks’ 9-3 Class 6A championship game victory over Canon-McMillan.

Deirdre Flaherty

Mt. Lebanon, So., C

Mt. Lebanon finished in second place in Section 1-6A behind Bethel Park thanks to the breakout first high school season by a sophomore catcher. Not only was Flaherty a force with her arm behind the plate, shutting down opposing running games, Flaherty hit .650 (39 for 60) with 12 homers and 33 RBIs with a 1.330 slugging percentage and an OPS of 2.018.

Payton List

Beaver, Jr., P

The Virginia Tech recruit and her Bobcats teammates were perfect, the only team in the state to finish undefeated. List finished with a 16-0 record and an ERA of 0.64 with 233 strikeouts in 120 innings pitched. She made the list of top hitters as well with a .409 batting average with five home runs and 23 RBIs in leading Beaver to its first WPIAL and PIAA softball championships.

Kailey Larcinese

Elizabeth Forward, Sr., P

The Towson recruit was magnificent in the circle again, finishing with a 17-3 record with an ERA of 0.87 and a WHIP of 0.63 with 188 strikeouts in 120⅔ innings pitched. At the plate, Larcinese has a .339 batting average with three home runs and 30 RBIs. As a sophomore, Larcinese was named the 2019 TribLive HSSN Player of the Year.

Lauren Yuhas

West Mifflin, Sr., SS

The Ohio recruit hit .571 (36 for 63) with 11 home runs and 30 RBIs. Yuhas had a .641 on-base percentage, a 1.286 slugging percentage and a 1.927 OPS. She scored 41 runs and was a perfect 13 for 13 in stolen bases. The slick shortstop had a .930 fielding percentage in leading the Titans to a 16-win season and a berth in the 4A semifinals.

Haylie Brunson

Mt. Pleasant, Sr., 3B

The Pitt recruit batted .560 (47 for 84) with six home runs, 29 runs scored and a team-high 41 RBIs and 22 doubles. She had a .560 on-base percentage and a 1.107 slugging percentage. Brunson not only carried a big stick but was scorching at the hot corner with a .929 fielding percentage in helping Mt. Pleasant win its second WPIAL championship in six years and the Vikings’ second state crown in five years.

Maddie Griffin

Ligonier Valley, Jr., P

It was a season of firsts for Maddie Griffin and Ligonier Valley as the Rams made the move from District 6 to the WPIAL. Griffin was fresh after missing her sophomore season due to the pandemic and playing mostly shortstop her freshman season at LV. Griffin was dominant in the circle with a 19-3 record, a 0.39 ERA and 316 strikeouts in 143⅓ innings pitched with 11 no-hitters and four perfect games.

Mia Edwards

Shenango, Sr., P

The Colgate recruit enjoyed success with her arm and her bat. Edwards finished with a 14-6 record with a 0.80 ERA and 300 strikeouts in 139⅓ innings pitched. The first HSSN Softball Player of the Week in 2019 batted .313 with a team-high five home runs, 25 runs scored and 19 RBIs with a .434 on-base percentage and a .656 slugging percentage as the Wildcats won 16 games and reach the WPIAL finals.

London Whipkey

West Greene, So., C

Whipkey was completing fifth grade when West Greene won its first WPIAL softball championship in 2016. She was a spectator for the first four district crowns (2016-2019), but she played a huge role in the Pioneers’ record-tying fifth crown this spring. The sophomore hit .511 (45 for 88) with two home runs, 46 RBIs with a .531 on-base percentage and a .784 slugging percentage.

• • • • •

Trib HSSN Postseason Awards

Baseball Player of the Year

Softball Player of the Year

Baseball Trib 10 All-Stars

Baseball Head of the Class

Softball Head of the Class

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