Westmoreland WPIAL softball playoff capsules: Games for Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Tuesday, May 16, 2023 | 3:09 PM

WPIAL softball playoffs

Class 6A


3-Norwin (14-5) vs. 6-Canon-McMillan (7-11)

5 p.m. Wednesday at Gateway

Winner plays: 2-Hempfield (16-3) May 24 (time, site TBD) in semifinals

Players to watch: Bailey Snowberger, Norwin; Morgan Doyle, Canon-McMillan

Extra bases: Norwin is hoping for a third matchup with rival Hempfield in what would be a playoff rematch. Hempfield edged the Knights in the quarterfinals last year, 5-4, at Penn-Trafford. The teams split during the regular season with Norwin winning 10-8 and Hempfield holding back the Knights, 2-1. The Knights have lost three of their last five games, including a 4-3 setback against Mt. Lebanon. But a season sweep of North Allegheny, the No. 4 seed, is a strong sign. Norwin swept Canon-McMillan handily, winning 15-5 (6 innings) and 14-5. Norwin lost to Canon-McMillan in the semis two years ago, 7-4. Snowberger, a standout shortstop, gets the offense started. The Knights’ power hitters are senior catcher Madie Kessler (9 HR), junior Josey Michalski and senior Emma Novotnak. Senior pitcher Alyssa McCormick has been steady all season, and also provides offense. … Canon-McMillan tied Pine-Richland for fifth in the lone 6A section. The Big Macs snapped a four-game losing streak with back-to-back shutout wins to close the regular season. They blanked Butler, 10-0, and Baldwin, 2-0. Doyle, a junior outfielder, is hitting .457 with 32 hits and 17 runs. Junior Olivia Ford (.357) has four home runs and 16 RBIs, while freshman Kiersten Williams leads the team with 19 RBIs. The Big Macs lost to Pine-Richland in the first round last year, 1-0.

Class 5A


7-Franklin Regional (12-6) vs. 2-Shaler (16-0)

3 p.m. Wednesday at Gateway

Winner plays: Winner of 6-Latrobe (15-3)/3-Trinity (16-2) in semifinals (date, time, site TBD)

Players to watch: Madison Nguyen, Franklin Regional; Eloise Facher, Shaler

Extra bases: Franklin Regional loves to hit the long ball, and the Panthers proved it in the first round when they clobbered No. 10 Moon, 10-2. Nguyen, a senior first baseman, and senior third baseman Alex Patberg each hit two home runs, with Nguyen driving in a career-high six runs. Senior Sydney Jackson added three hits, while sophomore Toryn Fulton and freshman Chloe Lancaster had doubles. The Panthers have won seven of their last eight. Patberg leads with nine home runs and has 27 RBIs, Fulton has eight homers and 32 RBIs, Nguyen has seven homers and 26 RBIs. The Panthers have 30 home runs as a team. … Shaler is one of four undefeated teams in WPIAL softball, joining Elizabeth Forward (16-0), Neshannock (17-0) and Carmichaels (16-0). The Titans defeated Bethel Park, 5-3, in the first round at Fox Chapel. Freshman Alyssa Schaffold homered and doubled, joining senior Bethany Rodman with two hits. Freshman Bria Bosiljevac was the winning pitcher after working 4 2/3 innings and striking out 11. Shaler has 10-runned seven teams. The Titans lost to Penn-Trafford in the quarterfinals last year at Plum, 5-0. They last made the semifinals in 2015 (4A) and lost to Hempfield.

6-Latrobe (15-3) vs. 3-Trinity (16-2)

5 p.m. Wednesday at West Mifflin

Winner plays: Winner of 7-Franklin Regional (12-6)/2-Shaler (16-0) in semifinals (time, date, site TBD)

Players to watch: Lauren Weatherton, Latrobe; Taylor Dunn, Trinity

Extra bases: Latrobe flexed its offensive muscles in Monday’s first round, clubbing Western Beaver, 12-1, in six innings. Hayden Kraynick doubled twice, Piper Zufall tripled, Weatherton went 3 for 3, and Straigis homered for the Wildcats, who hadn’t scored more than nine runs in a game since April 21. They have won five in a row. Latrobe was bounced in the quarterfinals last year by North Hills. Kraynick was hitting .548, and Sydney DeGram .500. Straigis has six home runs. … Trinity had some base-running miscues in its playoff opener, but still managed to escape No. 14 Penn-Trafford, 3-2, handing the Warriors their earliest playoff exit since 2011. Hanna Suhowski went 2 for 3 with a double, Amber Morgan added two hits and Miranda Rinehart homered for the Hillers, who lost in the quarterfinals last year as a No. 3 seed.

Class 4A


4-Belle Vernon (15-4) vs. 5-West Mifflin (13-5)

5 p.m. Wednesday at Boyce Mayview Park, Upper St. Clair

Winner plays: Winner of 1-Elizabeth Forward (16-0)/8-Hampton (13-5) in semifinals (time, date, site TBD)

Players to watch: Maren Metikosh, Belle Vernon; Rylie Dobnak, West Mifflin

Extra bases: Belle Vernon finished second to top-seeded Elizabeth Forward in Section 2. The Leopards sat through a bye in the first round, so they had to wait to try to extend their winning streak to six. They put together a pair of impressive wins late over Connellsville (10-1) and Union (8-0). Grace Sokol (.487, 4 HR), Olivia Kolowitz (4 HR), and Metikosh (20 runs) are offensive leaders. Kolowitz and Talia Ross are a formidable pitching combo. Metikosh is a Central Connecticut State commit, while Kolowitz is headed to St. Francis (Pa.). The Leopards have 25 home runs. … West Mifflin, the co-winner of Section 1 with Knoch, opened with a 10-0 victory over McKeesport in the first round. Addie Hilligsberg tossed a two-hitter with eight Ks, and also went 2 for 4 with two RBIs. Jasalin Guenther, Sam Tomko and Aubrey Jaskulsksi also drove in a pair for the Titans. Belle Vernon and West Mifflin were supposed to play earlier in the year but the game was postponed.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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