Trib HSSN Baseball Player of the Week for May 3, 2021
Monday, May 3, 2021 | 9:55 PM
The district’s lone undefeated baseball team heading into May and the stretch run of the regular season picked up two more dominant section wins last week sparked by a senior who is trying to close out his scholastic career with a golden bang.
In a pair of Section 1-5A showdowns against then-second-place Gateway, Franklin Regional shortstop Louie Kegerreis and his Panthers teammates were at their best.
“Louie is a complete baseball player who is able to hit, run, field and throw all at an elite level,” Franklin Regional coach Bob Sadler said. “Louie continues to work on all facets of his game because he strives to be at his absolute best every game and wants to be a big-time player at the next level too.”
On Monday at Gateway, Kegerreis was 2 for 3 with a double, three runs scored and three RBIs in the Panthers’ 17-2 drubbing of the Gators.
“Against Gateway, Louie was able to drive the ball the opposite way and take what the pitchers were giving him,” Sadler said. “Throughout the series, he didn’t try to pull the outside pitch, and that enabled him to have a big series.”
The next day at Haymaker Park in Murrysville, Franklin Regional completed the sweep with an 11-0 whitewash of Gateway. Kegerreis was 3 for 3 with two runs scored, two RBIs and a stolen base.
“Louie has been patiently aggressive, which has allowed him to lay off pitcher’s pitches and hunt pitches in his zone,” Sadler said. “His approach and execution at the plate are already next level, and he seems to always rise to the occasion. The bigger the moment, the bigger Louie seems to up his game as no situation is too big or puts too much pressure on him.”
While not a big rah-rah, guy, Sadler said Kegerreis lets his bat and glove do the talking on the field.
“Louie has been a player who has led by example throughout the season,” he said.
Kegerreis is also one of the top shortstops in the district. Against Gateway, he proved it time and again by making the routine plays look easy and above-average plays look routine.
“Defensively, Louie has made all the routine plays this year as well as some spectacular ones,” Sadler said. “He seems to make a big-time play each series, which helps our pitchers keep down their pitch count.”
Part of the reason the Panthers are still perfect this season is the great work Keggereis and his fellow Panthers defenders are doing game in and game out.
“The guys on the mound know that Louie as well as the rest of the defense has their back when the ball is put in play, which allows our guys to attack hitters,” Sadler said. “The team has a .962 fielding percentage, and Louie has been a part of seven double plays this season.”
With the two wins over Gateway, Franklin Regional has clinched a share of the section title and can win it outright with one more win with a two-game series against Kiski Area coming up.
Once again this season, the WPIAL baseball Class 5A field will be deep come postseason time. The Panthers will be one of the favorites to win a WPIAL baseball title for the third time in school history and first time in 20 years.
“I believe our team has shown the ability to compete at a very high level this year,” Sadler said. “If we continue to play at this level throughout the remainder of the year, I believe that we will have earned a spot near the top of the Class 5A playoff field.”
2021 Trib HSSN Baseball Players of the Week
Week 4 – Drew Lafferty and Austin Lafferty, South Park
Week 3 – Payton Conti, California
Week 2 – Jake Slazinski, Keystone Oaks
Week 1 – Jake Walker, West Mifflin
Tags: Franklin Regional
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