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DIVISION 1

COUGHLIN

Coach: Alice Lyons, fourth season


PIAA Class: 3A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 5-10, 5th Division 1


2013 postseason: Lost 7-0 to North Pocono in D2-3A first round.


Home Field: The Pit, Plains Municipal Park


Key Players Lost: Danyelle Schweit, 3B; Cassy Vukovich, C


Key Players Returning: Samantha Conway, 3B-OF, Sr.; Liz Ellsworth, SS, Sr.; Keighlyn Oliver, LF, Sr.; Marissa Ross, OF, Sr.; Julie Suchoski, P, Sr.; Kayla Cunningham, 2B-RF, Jr.


Outlook: Ross is one of the best players in the WVC, a first-team all-star who hit .558 with five homers and 22 RBI. Cunningham (.317) and Ellsworth (.277) were also solid at the plate. However, more help is needed as the Crusaders were shut out five times in 2013, second only to Pittston Area. Six starters return, supplemented by a promising group of newcomers. A couple of pitchers are in that bunch and that should help out as Suchoski had to pitch every inning last season.


CRESTWOOD

Coach: Bob Bertoni, fourth season


PIAA Class: 3A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 7-8, 3rd Division 1


2013 postseason: Defeated Dallas 2-0 in D2-3A first round. Lost 4-0 to Berwick in D2-3A quarterfinals.


Home Field: On campus


Key Players Lost: Ashley Casem, 2B-P; Rachael Ritz, CF; Melanie Snyder, C; Juliet Wotherspoon, OF


Key Players Returning: Alyssa Davies, P, Sr.; Meghan Waite, 3B-SS; Coleen Borum, P-OF, Jr.; Ashley Olenginski, 1B-P, Jr; Bree Fetterman, C-OF, So.


Outlook: Crestwood dipped below .500 for the first time since 2009 last year. One problem was the offense, which scored one run in five games and was shut out once. Olenginski, a Division I first-team all-star who had a team-leading six doubles in 2013, and Waite, an honorable mention pick who added four more, will be the keys to jump-starting the bats. The pitching is in good hands with three-year starter Davies, who struck out a WVC-high 101 batters in 94 innings. Success, though, will be determined on how the newcomers fill the gaps.


HAZLETON AREA

Coach: Vince Trivelpiece, sixth season


PIAA Class: 4A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 14-1, 1st Division 1


2013 postseason: Defeated Wallenpaupack 2-1 in D2/4-4A semifinals. Defeated Williamsport 1-0 in D2/4-4A championship. Lost 4-1 to D3-2 Daniel Boone in first round of PIAA playoffs.


Home Field: On campus


Key Players Lost: Becky Demko, P; Haley Kendall, OF; Justine Rossi, C.


Key Players Returning: Mikaela Browdy, SS, Jr.; Abby Sachse, OF-C-3B, Jr.; Maria Trivelpiece, IF-P, Jr.; Lexi Wolk, CF, Jr.; Samantha Varela, P-1B, Jr.; Celine Podlesney, 1B-C, So.; Mackenzie Yori, IF, So.


Outlook: Hazleton Area doesn’t have a senior on the roster, but the team is experienced and talented. Trivelpiece (.600 BA, 22 SB) was the divisional co-MVP last year. She, Sachse (.392, 11 SB), Wolk (.396, 21 RBI) and Yori (.507, 27 SB) were all divisional first-team all-stars. Despite not having elite power, the offense scored 105 runs in 2013, third most in the WVC. Trivelpiece and her sister Megan, who dominated in the junior high ranks, will likely take over the pitching. That should ease the loss of divisional co-MVP Demko to graduation. Could go far in the postseason.


NANTICOKE

Coach: Ryan Stetz, second year


PIAA Class: 2A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 11-4, 2nd Division 1


2013 postseason: Defeated Mid Valley 6-3 in D2-2A first round. Lost 5-4 to Hanover Area in D2-2A quarterfinals.


Home Field: K.M. Smith Elementary


Key Players Lost: Kayla Benjamin, C; Ali Matulewski, P; Kayley Schinski, SS


Key Players Returning: Taylor Briggs, OF, Sr.; Kara Voyton, 3B, Sr.; Madeline O’Donohue, C, Jr.; Rachel Roccograndi, IF-OF, So.


Outlook: Considering the losses to graduation, the Trojanettes put together a solid 2013 campaign that included a pair of 2-1 losses to Hazleton Area. This year’s team is similar as it is young but talented. Voyton, a second-team all-star last season, is a power hitter who had four homers, two triples and three doubles. The rest of the lineup is solid. Pitching, though, needs to be sorted out since both hurlers are gone. Like last year, Nanticoke will probably be chasing Hazleton Area for the top spot.


PITTSTON AREA

Coach: Dave DeLuca, third season


PIAA Class: 3A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 2-13, 6th Division 1


2013 postseason: Lost 8-1 to Wyoming Area in D2-3A first round.


Home Field: Primary Center, Rock Street, Hughestown


Key Players Lost: None


Key Players Returning: Alyssa Talerico, P, Sr.; Lauren Dragon, C, Jr.; Julie Lieback, IF, Jr.; Taylor Baloga, P, So.; Adison Hazlet, IF-OF, So.; Mindina Lieback, IF-OF, So.; Julie Silinskie, IF-OF, So.


Outlook: The Patriots started five freshmen last season and the results were as expected in a tough division. They were shut out a WVC-high six times and surrendered 127 runs, third most in the WVC. The latter should improve as Pittston Area foresees an improvement on defense and on the mound. If the bats come around, the Patriots could make things more difficult for opponents this season. Still, they might be a year away from finishing in the upper portion of the division.


WYOMING VALLEY WEST

Coach: Desiree Hooper, third season


PIAA Class: 4A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 6-9, 4th Division 1


2013 Postseason: Lost 5-1 to Wallenpaupack in D2/4-4A quarterfinals.


Home Field: Third Avenue Elementary, Kingston


Key Players Lost: Casey Dolan, SS; Kymber Letteer, C; Kelcie Senchak, OF


Key Players Returning: Leanne Dellarte, CF, Sr.; Danielle Grega, 2B, Sr.; Sarah Fugate, 3B-OF, Jr.; Haley Gayoski, DH, Jr..; Sabrina Hamersley, OF, Jr.; Megan Kane, SS-1B, So.; Chloe Ruckle, P, So.


Outlook: Three one-run losses at the start of the season prevented Valley West from posting its first winning record since 2009. Still, the six victories were one less than the three previous seasons combined. So things are looking up. Ruckle was a workhorse on the mound, pitching two no-hitters, but should have some help this season. The offense is led by Dellarte, a second-team all-star last season, and Gayoski, who had 16 RBI. A strong freshmen class should ease the graduation losses. Could be ready to take the next step.


DIVISION 2

BERWICK

Coach: Brian Bridge, fifth season


PIAA Class: 3A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 11-3, 1st Division 2


2013 postseason: Defeated Western Wayne 12-0 in the first round of the D2-3A playoffs, Crestwood 2-0 in the quarterfinals and North Pocono 6-1 in the semifinals. Lost 2-0 to Valley View for the D2-3A championship.


Home Field: Crispin Softball Field


Key Players Lost: Margaret Bridge, P


Key Players Returning: Sara Berlin, C, Sr.; Cassondra Dianese, C-1B, Sr.; Taylor Kern, OF-DP, Sr.; Ashton Mensinger, P-OF, Sr.; Abbey Remley, SS-IF, Sr.; Abbey Favata, OF-Ult, Jr.; Courtney Hummel, OF-Utl, Jr.; Moriah Lynn, 3B-P, Jr.; Kylene Welsh, 2B-Ult, Jr.


Outlook: Despite losing Division 2 MVP Bridge, the Dawgs should be a very dangerous team. They were fourth in the WVC in runs scored last season and that shouldn’t drop with first-team all-stars Hummel, Lynn and Remley back. Berlin, Dianese and Welsh were second-team choices. Pitching, though, can go a long way in softball so Berwick needs to patch that hole. If that’s done, the Dawgs should be in the thick of the race for the D2-3A title.


DALLAS

Coach: Joyce Tinner, 18th season


PIAA Class: 3A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 5-9, 4th Division 2


2013 postseason: Lost 2-0 to Crestwood in D2-3A first round.


Home Field: Back Mountain Little League


Key Players Lost: Taylor Baker, P-OF; Nicole Giampietro, IF


Key Players Returning: Not provided.


Outlook: On paper, last year’s record wasn’t impressive from a traditionally strong program. But the Mountaineers were a young team and five of the losses were by a run, including consecutive 1-0 setbacks. The offense was inconsistent, scoring three or less runs nine times. That could change even with Baker, who had six extra-base hits, gone. With a year of experience, Dallas could change those close losses into wins and challenge for the division.


LAKE-LEHMAN

Coach: Wayne Oplinger, third season


PIAA Class: 3A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 1-13, 5th Division 2


2013 Postseason: Lost 7-2 to Abington Heights in D2-3A first round.


Home Field: On campus


Key Players Lost: Vickey Cadwalader, OF; Miranda Dembowski, OF; Sarah Stacey, 3B


Key Players Returning: Britney Meeker, C, Sr.; Lacey Miller, P-IF, Sr.; Kirsten Cope, 1B-OF, Jr.; Lexi Oplinger, SS, Jr.; Sara Schuler, CF, So.; Jordan Hodle, P, So.


Coach’s Outlook: Lake-Lehman’s district loss to Abington Heights summed up last year. The Black Knights led 2-0 into the fourth and had a no-hitter when things unraveled. There were three one-run and three two-run losses during the season. There is talent on the roster headed by divisional second-team all-star Meeker and honorable mention picks Hodle and Oplinger. Six starters return in all, so a big jump in the win column is possible if the Black Knights can win those close games.


TUNKHANNOCK

Coach: John Keefe, ninth season


PIAA Class: 3A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 9-5, tied 2nd Division 2


2013 postseason: Defeated West Scranton 10-0 in D2-3A first round. Defeated Wyoming Area 6-5 in 8 innings in D2-3A quarterfinals. Lost 10-0 to Valley View in D2-3A semifinals.


Home Field: On campus


Key Players Lost: Jess Brennan, OF; C Emily Forba, C; Kirsten Gilpin, P-OF


Key Players Returning: Ryleigh Fitch, 3B, Sr.; Michelle Goodwin, OF, Sr.; Taylor Hegedty, 1B, Sr.; Ashley Knott, Ult, Sr.; Erin Smith, P-OF, Sr.; Molly Hampsey, 2B, Jr.; Tracy Kromko, SS, Jr.


Outlook: Three one-run losses prevented Tunkhannock from winning the divisional title in 2013. The Tigers return plenty of talent, headed by divisional first-team all-stars Smith and Hampsey. Fitch, a second-team all-star last year, provides power at the plate. She had three homers as a junior. The entire infield returns, so defense should be a strong point. With only a few holes to fill, the Tigers should be in the thick of the divisional race and, perhaps, the D2-3A title chase as well.


WYOMING AREA

Coach: John McNeil, first season


PIAA Class: 3A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 9-5, tied 2nd Division 2


2013 postseason: Defeated Pittston Area 8-1 in D2-3A first round. Lost 6-5 in 8 innings to Tunkhannock in D2-3A quarterfinals.


Home Field: Atlas Field, West Pittston


Key Players Lost: Serra Degnan, SS; Alex Holtz, P; Kate Kross, 1B


Key Players Returning: Drew Bednarski, OF, Sr.; Nicole Cumbo, P-IF, Sr.; Adrienne Przybyla, OF, Sr.; Kat Sokirka, 3B, Sr.; Nicole Turner, C, Sr.; Lauren Maloney, P-IF, Jr.; Emily Wolfgang, 2B-SS, Jr.; Bree Bednarski, OF-2B, So.;


Outlook: McNeil is the team’s third coach in as many years, but he’ll have the benefit of a veteran team. Przybyla and Turner were first-team all-stars last season, and the Bednarski sisters and Wolfgang earned second-team honors. After relying on Holtz on the mound the past few seasons, the Warriors will likely turn to Cumbo and Maloney. Each saw limited time last year. Overall, the team should be in the divisional race to the end.


DIVISION 3

GAR

Coach: Barry Snyder, fifth season


PIAA Class: 2A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 3-9, tied 5th Division 3


2013 Postseason: Lost 14-0 to Holy Cross in D2-2A first round.


Home Field: Coal Street Park


Key Players Lost: Samantha Bryan, C; Julianna Leco, IF; Monica Missal, OF; Megan O’Day, Ult


Key Players Returning: Brea Seabrook, OF, Jr.; Mikayla Hoskins, P, Jr.; Brittany Stephenson, 1B, Jr.; Lindsey Quinn, IF, SO.


Outlook: GAR was a middle-of-the-pack team last year as far as runs scored. The problem was the Grenadiers surrendered the second most in the WVC, 143. For that to change, they’ll need for an inexperienced outfield to mature. The pitching did improve later in the 2013 season. Seabrook led the team with four extra-base hits last season. Overall, the team lacks on-field experience, so improving as the season goes on will be a goal.


HANOVER AREA

Coach: Tami Thomas, fifth season


PIAA Class: 2A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 10-2, 2nd Division 3


2013 Postseason: Defeated Wyoming Seminary 12-0 in D2-2A first round and Nanticoke 5-4 in D2-2A quarterfinals. Lost 11-3 to Holy Redeemer in D2-2A semifinals.


Home Field: On campus


Key Players Lost: None.


Key Players Returning: Caitlyn Bogart, OF, Sr.; Brittany McNair, 3B, Sr.; Emily Rinehimer, 2B, Sr.; Kim Pericci, 1B-OF, Jr.; Haylee Bobos, C, So.; Michaela Halesey, 3B-OF, So.; Michelle McNair, SS, So.; MaryKate Penczkowski, P, So.


Outlook: Everybody is back from a team that was able to beat everyone but Holy Redeemer during the regular season and postseason. The offense should be potent as Bobos, Bogart, the McNairs and Rinehimer all hit for power. Bogart and Rinehimer were Division 3 all-stars; the others made the second team. So did Penczkowski, who struck out 75 in 72 innings. If there is any team capable of catching Redeemer, it’s Hanover Area. Whether the Hawkeyes can remains to be seen.


HOLY REDEEMER

Coach: Jerry Pauliukonis, first season


PIAA Class: 2A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 12-0, 1st Division 3


2013 postseason: Won D2-2A championship by defeating Meyers 16-4, Mountain View 9-6, Hanover Area 11-3 and Holy Cross 4-3 in 8 innings. In the PIAA 2A playoffs, defeated D4 champ Warrior Run 1-0 in the first round and D12 champ Conwell-Egan 5-3 in the quarterfinals. Lost 5-4 to D3 champ Brandywine Heights in the semifinals.


Home Field: Kingston Rec. Center Field


Key Players Lost: Biz Eaton, OF; Sydney Kotch, Sr.; Kasey Miller, 1B; Alexis Shemanski, 3B


Key Players Returning: Kaitlyn Kaluzny, SS, Sr.; Julie Kosik, OF, Sr.; Jen Ringsdorf, OF, Jr.; Chelsea Skrepenak, C, Jr.; Kaya Swanek, P Jr.; Lydia Lawson, OF, So.


Outlook: The Royals’ season last year ended in a heartbreaking loss a game from the state championship. Still, there is plenty of talent to make another strong postseason run. Swanek is arguably the premier pitcher in the WVC. A divisional all-star, she struck out 62 and allowed just 33 hits and five earned runs in 52.2 WVC innings last season. Skrepenak was the divisional MVP and used her blazing speed to hit eight homers. Ringsdorf was also a first-team all-star. She and Kaluzny each had five extra-base hits.


MEYERS

Coach: Nicole Hoskins, fourth season


PIAA Class: 2A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 1-11, 7th Division 3


2013 Postseason: Lost 16-4 to Holy Redeemer in D2-2A first round.


Home Field: Miner Park


Key Players Lost: None.


Key Players Returning: Brianna DiMaggio, P-IF, Sr.; Sarah McCann, SS-OF, Sr.; Leah Merrick, 3B-OF, Sr.; Gina Strillacci, P-3B, Jr.; Betsy Macko, IF-P, So.; Sarah Smith, C-3B, So.


Outlook: Meyers surrendered a WVC-high 146 runs last season, but with improved defense and pitching that total should fall. One number that needs to improve is the offensive output. The Mohawks scored only 54 runs in 2013, fourth worst in the WVC. Merrick, a first-team divisional all-star, hit .444 with three homers. McCann, a second-teamer, hit .418 and also showed power with six extra-base hits. But after that, there was a dramatic drop in production.


MMI PREP

Coach: Marsha Kringe, fourth season


PIAA Class: A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 3-9,tied 5th Division 3


2013 Postseason: Lost 10-0 to Blue Ridge in D2-A quarterfinals.


Home Field: MMI Athletic Complex


Key Players Lost: Kayla Karchner, P; Kirsten Young, 1B


Key Players Returning: Maria Carrato, 2B, Sr.; Amber Ferry, C, Sr.; Kristen Purcell, P-SS, Sr.; Rachel Stanziola, IF-OF, Jr.


Coach’s Outlook: MMI lost its top pitcher and hitter to graduation, but does return eight letterwinners. Purcell logged some innings in the circle, striking out 13 in 11 innings. Carrato added three doubles, but the offense will need more consistency. It started out well last year, only to hit a dry spell midseason. There is optimism the Preppers can improve on last year’s record, and while the holes to fill are few they are also big.


NORTHWEST

Coach: Karen May, fourth season


PIAA Class: 2A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 8-4, 3rd Division 3


2013 Postseason: Lost 4-1 to Dunmore in D2-2A first round.


Home Field: On campus


Key Players Lost: Sara Gleco, 1B


Key Players Returning: Kate Agnello, OF, Sr.; Emily Buerger, OF, Sr.; Kristin Bomboy, IF, Sr.; Hailey Chapin, OF, Sr.; Sue Mendegro, IF, Sr.; Olivia McCorkel, C, Sr.; Jaden Perrillo, IF, Sr.; Maggie Murphy, 3B, Jr.; Kelsey Yustat, P-OF, Jr.


Outlook: Northwest is one of two teams with a legitimate chance to unseat defending divisional champ Redeemer. Three divisional first-team all-stars are back: McCorkel, who hit five homers; Murphy, who had three doubles; and Yustat, who allowed just 55 hits in 72.1 innings. Burger also clubbed two homers. The Rangers, though, need to play better against Redeemer and Hanover Area. They allowed 50 runs during the WVC season in 2013, with 35 coming against those two opponents.


WYOMING SEMINARY

Coach: Ethan Lewis, fourth season


PIAA Class: 2A


2013 WVC Record/Finish: 5-7, 4th Division 3


2013 Postseason: Lost 14-0 to Hanover Area in D2-2A first round.


Home Field: Nesbitt Field, Kingston


Key Players Lost: Hannah Gabriel, IF-OF; Devin Holmes, IF


Key Players Returning: Kelsey Atkinson, CF, Sr.; Megan Bresnahan, P-1B, Sr.; Mackenzie Gagliardi, SS-C, Jr.


Outlook: It’s a numbers game at Seminary as the 28 players, including girls from 11 countries, represent the biggest roster in quite some time. The downside is 18 of them are either freshmen or sophomores. However, many have extensive softball experience, so the growing pains might not be that bad. Gagliardi, a divisional first-team all-star in 2013, is back after hitting .512. Atkinson (.419) is also expected to steady the offense. Bresnahan pitched nearly every inning last season, but her workload could lessen some. The Blue Knights are optimistic they can break the .500 barrier.

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