Westmoreland WPIAL baseball playoff capsules for May 20, 2021
Wednesday, May 19, 2021 | 3:16 PM
2-Avonworth (13-7) vs. 15-Ligonier Valley (7-11)
4:30 p.m. at West Mifflin
Coaches: Christopher Baradakos, Avonworth; Brett Marabito, Ligonier Valley
Winner plays: Winner of 7-Valley (12-4)/10-Mohawk (12-6) on Saturday in quarterfinals
Players to watch: Jordan Kolenda, Jr., SS/P, Avonworth; Nick Beitel, Jr., C, Ligonier Valley
Extra bases: Avonworth captured the Section 2-3A title but dropped three of its final four games. Junior Jon Bodnar is hitting .433 with 12 RBIs. Senior Jonah Sommers is batting .431 with 16 RBIs. Kolenda hit .357 with 24 runs, five triples, two homers and 19 stolen bases. Senior pitcher Sean McAleer is 3-0 with a 0.47 ERA. Beitel leads the Rams with a .471 batting average along with 21 runs scored, four doubles and 15 stolen bases. Hayden Sierocky hit .383 with 18 runs scored and 14 RBIs. This is Ligonier Valley’s first WPIAL playoff game. The Rams have dropped their past four games.
5-Derry (11-4) vs. 12-New Brighton (8-10)
6:30 p.m. at Latrobe
Coaches: John Flickinger, Derry; Michael Kirschner, New Brighton
Winner plays: Winner of 4-McGuffey (12-4)/13-South Allegheny (12-6) on Saturday in quarterfinals
Players to watch: Josh Ulery, Sr., P, Derry; Eddie Yorns, Sr., C, New Brighton
Extra bases: Derry won 11 of its past 13 games after starting the season 0-2. The Trojans captured the Section 3-3A title. Senior Josh Ulery has been a key contributor at the plate and on the hill. He is batting .587 with 18 runs scored, 19 RBIs, six doubles, two triples and a home run. He is 3-1 on the mound with a 2.33 ERA. Senior Paul Koontz is 3-0 with a 1.77 ERA, and Sam Jones is hitting .409 with four doubles among his 18 hits. Ryan Bushey (.385), Matt McDowell (.382) and Ryan Hood (.371) also are hitting above .370. Senior Eddie Yorns leads New Brighton with a .464 batting average with 21 RBIs. Sophomore Brennan Cattivera is hitting .389, and junior Aaron Elliott is hitting .339 with eight stolen bases. Pitcher Bobby Budacki is 4-4 with a 2.26 ERA. The Lions finished 5-5 in Section 1-3A.
8-Deer Lakes (9-6) vs. 9-Yough (7-7)
Noon at Highlands
Coaches: Josh Tysk, Deer Lakes; Craig Spisak, Yough
Winner plays: Winner of 1-Hopewell (13-5)/16-Waynesburg (5-9) on Saturday in quarterfinals
Players to watch: Justin Brannagan, Jr., P/OF, Deer Lakes; Vinny Martin, Sr., P/OF, Yough
Extra bases: The Lancers won seven of their first eight games before losing five of their final seven, including two one-run losses to Derry to decide the Section 3 championship. The Lancers are looking for their first playoff victory since finishing fourth in 2017. Brannagan leads the Lancers with a .417 batting average and also has pitched 45 innings while accumulating a 1.24 ERA. Josh Wachter also leads the team with 18 RBIs and has four doubles. While the Lancers started on a good note, the Cougars got off to the opposite kind of start. They lost five of their first six games but bounced back to finish the regular season with a .500 record. Yough is returning to the playoffs after being knocked out in the semifinals as the No. 2 seed in 2019.
Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at email@example.com or via Twitter .
More Baseball• Laurel Highlands baseball coach DeBerry dies following stomach cancer diagnosis
• Created out of pandemic necessity, league plays ball for a 2nd summer
• Westmoreland notebook: WPIAL champs head to PNC Park; lacrosse players hit big stage
• North Allegheny catcher Aaron Posey commits to Division I Kennesaw State
• Traveling summer baseball teams keep Hampton players sharp