Westmoreland H.S. athletes of the week: Belle Vernon’s Maren Metikosh, Latrobe’s Logan Bradish

Saturday, May 27, 2023 | 3:10 PM

Maren Metikosh

School: Belle Vernon

Sport: Softball

Class: Senior

Claim to fame: Metikosh helped Belle Vernon upset the top-seeded team in the WPIAL Class 4A semifinals and reach the championship for the first time in five years. The outfielder belted a grand slam, one of three Leopards’ homers, in a 10-1 win over Elizabeth Forward, a team the fourth-seeded Leopards had not beaten in eight previous attempts.

Metikosh, a Central Connecticut State commit, is the reigning Pennsylvania High School Softball Coaches Association Class 4A Player of the Year.

What was it like to upset Elizabeth Forward to reach the finals?

When I say it felt good, it felt good. We came to the game with a positive approach. At practice, we worked on the little mistakes, and when it came to the game, we executed by not making those mistakes when it really mattered. We wanted that win.

Was that the program’s biggest win since you have been there?

Definitely. Not only was it the biggest win, but it was also the furthest we have come in playoffs.

What was going through your mind before you hit the grand slam?

Honestly, I was thinking she was going to throw me a high outside pitch, and she did. She was throwing me out the whole game, so I was ready for it.

Did you think Belle Vernon was a championship contender at the start of the year?

Yes. We put in loads of hard work during the offseason.

Where do you hit in the lineup, and how many homers do you have this season, and for your career?

In the lineup, I hit third. I have five homers this season and 11 career.

What is the best thing about a home run?

The best thing about a home run is the feeling of excitement that it brings. The sound of teammates and fans cheering really makes you feel good.

Do you have a nickname for your bat?

Sadly, no.

What role do you think you will have at Central Connecticut State?

I think I will have a role of providing strong defense and offense to their roster of talented girls.

What are you most looking forward to about college?

Making new friends and exploring the world outside of Pennsylvania.

What would a WPIAL championship mean to this team?

We’ve been putting so much dedication in this season. The WPIAL championship would mean the world to every single one of us. We’ve been through many ups and downs, but now we are in the position where we know what we want. We want that title.

Does the team want to win another title for coach Tom Rodriguez?

Yes, that is our goal.

Will you play travel ball this year? For what team?

Yes. The Ohio Outlaws National 05’—Leggins.

Your father, Mike, was a good athlete at Belle Vernon, correct? Where did he play in college?

He was a great athlete. He played baseball at Edinboro.

Did you like playing games early in the season on “The Beach?”

Not really. The wind was brutal

What makes you happy?

There are lots of things that make me happy. I’m a very happy person. The main thing that I would say makes me happy is seeing hard work pay off in the long run.

What makes you sad?

When people tear each other apart, rather than lifting one another up.

I can’t play a softball game unless I _____?

Have a visor on.

Before I step up to the plate I have to _____?

Time the pitcher and fasten my batting gloves as tight as they can go.

Who is the best pitcher you have faced?

Throughout my high school career, I would say Kailey Larcinese.

Who wins a Belle Vernon home run derby?

Wow that’s a hard one. I’d say Mia Zubovic. She hits nukes.

Are any of your travel teammates also playing in the WPIAL finals?

Yes, Autumn Boyd. She plays for Laurel. Let’s go!

Did you enjoy the prom?

Yes, although the dance floor was very small.

What is your favorite sports movie?

“The Benchwarmers” or “The Sandlot.”

What is your favorite hobby?

I like to work out, walk my dog and go shopping.

Who is on your concert schedule this summer?

Taylor Swift.

Logan Bradish

School: Latrobe

Sport: Baseball

Class: Senior

Claim to fame: A first baseman and pitcher, Bradish helped lead the Wildcats to the WPIAL Class 4A championship game. He tossed a five-hitter in a 4-2 win over Chartiers Valley in the quarterfinals, then ripped a double in a 10-7 victory over No. 1 seed Montour in the semifinals. Bradish is a Davis & Elkins commit.

What is the feeling like making it to the WPIAL finals?

It is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and it is awesome to do it with this team.

What do you know about the 2017 WPIAL and PIAA championship team?

I know that they are the only team to do that in Latrobe history. It’s pretty cool to know that we might do it as well.

What made you guys believe you could upset No. 1 Montour?

Our team really never worried about the seeding or who we went up against. We just worried about playing the game the right way and doing all the fundamentals right.

What will it take to win a championship?

We will just need to keep on playing our same game and just go into it with no pressure and keeping our approaches. It definitely won’t be easy, but we are ready for the challenge.

Why is the team concept so prevalent at Latrobe?

The team concept is huge because it doesn’t allow you to be a selfish player and be happy for your teammates when they pick you up.

What is better to win, the Barbie car or the title belt?

The Barbie car is better to win because it shows whatever it takes to get the win.

What is your go-to pitch?

My forkball.

Who is the best hitter you have faced?

Eli Boring, I never was able to get him out.

Will the Pirates have a winning season?

The Pirates will have a winning season and go to the playoffs.

Did you ever meet Arnold Palmer?

I never had the opportunity to meet Arnold Palmer, but it would be cool to have a conversation with him about the game of golf.

What is a sport you’re secretly good at?

Football — it is definitely one of my biggest regrets.

What is your senior superlative?

Class clown.

How many times have you guys worn the black-and-orange pinstriped uniforms?

We have worn the pinstripes two or three times, but we are very superstitious and think they are bad luck because we lost every time we wore them.

Who was your favorite Latrobe player growing up?

Zach Kokoska. He is a huge role model for me.

Who is your favorite pro athlete and team?

Nolan Arenado, and I love the Blue Jays.

What makes you happy in life?

Being able to play baseball with the team this year is what makes me the happiest in life.

Before I play a baseball game I have to _____?

Meditate and eat Chipotle the night before with Dante Basciano.

Why do you wear No. 12?

Because of Christian Yelich.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a TribLive reporter covering local sports in Westmoreland County. He can be reached at bbeckner@triblive.com.


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