Loyalsock’s Stopper highlights area all-star award selections
Loyalsock captured the HAC-III championship, Warrior Run reached the Class AAA state quarterfinals and South Williamsport defeated Warrior Run.
All three teams play in the same conference. All four teams have good cores returning next spring. Throw in Bucktail and Montgomery returning nearly every players from their Mid-Penn champions and one has a feeling how good area softball was this year and how it might be even better in 2020.
Before looking ahead to 2020, however, let’s look back at 2019.
Coach of the Year
Second runner-up–Mark Godfrey, Loyalsock: An assistant coach on South Williamsport’s 2003 Class A state championship team, Godrey had huge shoes to fill at Loyalsock, replacing Tom O’Malley. Godfrey was not hired until February, but meshed well with his players, pushed all the right buttons and helped keep the Lancers flourishing. Loyalsock went 18-4, captured a second straight HAC-III championship and reached the District 4 Class AAA semifinals. Following a five-game swing at Myrtle Beach last March, Loyalsock won 15 of its next 16 games and twice mercy-ruled state semifinalist Bloomsburg.
First runner-up–Chris Glenn, Montgomery: He turned Hughesville around last decade, helped Jersey Shore sustain its championship tradition earlier this decade and now Glenn is doing outstanding things at Montgomery. A year after helping the Red Raiders win their first playoff game since 2011, Glenn led Montgomery to one of its best seasons ever. Montgomery went 17-5, won a share of its first league title since 2010, and reached both its first District 4 Class A final and state tournament since 2010. The Raiders 17 wins were the second-most in program history and they did so with only two senior starters. Glenn and his staff are building something good.
And the winner is … Mike Poorman, Bucktail: It is remarkable what Bucktail has done in the five years since Poorman became its coach. A program that never had a winning season before 2017 now is a district champion and league champion for the first time and has made three straight playoff appearances. Bucktail shattered record after record and became the first team in school history in any sport to win a district championship. The Bucks finished 19-3, started 14-0 and rallied from two multiple-run deficits in their two district playoff wins en route to that championship. Oh yeah, Bucktail did all that with no seniors. Poorman has built this program from the ground up and as good as this year was, maybe it was just a start.
Honorable Mention: Garth Watson, Warrior Run; Chase Smith, Williamsport; Joe Tedesco, Muncy; Gregg Brown
Pitcher of the Year
Second runner-up–Emily Snyder, Montgomery: One of the top players in program history, Snyder kept getting better and better each year and was outstanding in her final scholastic campaign. The senior went 15-5, threw five shutouts and struck out 138 batters in 103 innings. Snyder pitched some of her best softball down the stretch, helping Montgomery win 15 straight games at one point. She won 27 games over the last two seasons, topped 400 career strikeouts and hit .475 with 20 RBIs, 21 runs and a team-high 14 stolen bases. Snyder also was among the area hits leaders, finishing with 38.
First runner-up–Savannah Doney, North Penn-Liberty: Bloomsburg University is receiving an excellent pitcher and Doney did it better than anyone who has ever thrown at North Penn-Liberty. In her final season, Doney capped a memorable scholastic career by going 11-7 with a 2.48 ERA and 187 strikeouts in 172 1/3 innings. Doney threw two shutouts and struck out at least 10 batters nine times. Doney helped Liberty enjoy its best-ever four-year run and graduated with 50 career wins, a 2.04 ERA and 534 strikeouts.
And the winner is…Madi Waltman, Warrior Run: Three pitchers have topped 300 strikeouts in a season in Warrior Run history: Laura Harris and Tay Parker, two of the state’s best players when they competed for the Defenders. Now Waltman is in both the 300-strikeout club and is a near-lock to earn all-state honors for a second straight season. Waltman led District 4 in nearly every significant category, going 21-4 with a 0.88 ERA and 314 strikeouts in 173 innings. The junior pitcher also allowed just 78 hits, threw a remarkable 59 2/3 straight scoreless innings at one point and had 15 shutouts in 25 appearances. Waltman was virtually untouchable all season, showing as much toughness and poise as talent. She often flourished in scoreless games that went deep into extra innings, threw four no-hitters, allowed three hits or fewer 19 times and held opponents to a .118 batting average. In just three years, Waltman has 38 wins and 545 strikeouts.
Player of the Year
Second runners-up–Savannah Doney, N.P.-Liberty and Summer McNulty, Loyalsock: Doney is not just the best pitcher in program history, but the best player, period. She proved it one last time this spring, hitting .509 with two home runs, 10 doubles, three triples and nine multi-hit games. Doney was a consistent force in the middle of the lineup and finished her Liberty career with a .445 average, a record 113 hits, six home runs, 29 doubles, 63 RBIs and 90 runs. McNulty is building her own impressive resume at Loyalsock and made a smooth transition from second base to catcher despite never before having played that position.
McNulty was outstanding defensively and lethal offensively, producing the area’s second-highest average. The sophomore hit .577 with an area-high 45 hits, a .679 on-base percentage, three home runs, five doubles and 35 RBIs. McNulty also scored an area-high 46 runs, stole 27 bases and produced an area-best 16 multi-hit performances.
First runner-up–Madi Waltman, Warrior Run: While she generates her most headlines via pitching, Waltman also is quite a hitter. Anchoring the lineup of a state quarterfinalist, Waltman hit .409 with two home runs, eight doubles, 25 RBIs and eight multi-hit games. As consistent as she is dangerous, Waltman put together a 12-game hitting streak and already has reached 96 career hits. She also has been an excellent run producer, collecting 70 RBIs.
And the winner is … Sam Stopper, Loyalsock: Opponents likely will breathe a collective sigh of relief now that Stopper has graduated after putting together one of the best careers in the storied Loyalsock history. The four-year starting shortstop hit over .500 for a second straight year, batting .545 with three home runs, seven triples and 14 doubles. Twenty-four of Stopper’s 42 hits went for extra bases as she produced a 1.675 OPS, a 1.026 slugging percentage and stole 10 bases. Stopper produced 14 multi-hit games, drove in 43 runs, scored 36 times and finished her scholastic career with more than 125 hits and 125 RBIs. An excellent fielder, Stopper was the most valuable player on an explosive team that scored runs in bunches. She compiled a .649 on-base percentage and produced 87 hits and 88 RBIs over the last two seasons, the best numbers by a District 4 player.
1. Morgan Tupper, IF, Montgomery (area-high .620 average, .650 obp, 44 hits, 20 RBIs, 25 runs, 8 stolen bases, 14 multi-hit games, just 1 error).
2. Summer McNulty, C, Loyalsock
3. Sam Stopper, IF, Loyalsock
4. Madi Waltman, P, Warrior Run
5. Isabelle Griswold, OF, Williamsport (.469, .521 obp, 4 HR, 3B, 7 2B, 20 RBIs, 25 runs, 8 game hitting streak, 9 multi-hit games).
6. Emma Poorman, IF, Bucktail (.533, .623 OBP, 5 home runs, triple, 5 doubles, 55 RBIs, 29 runs, 11 multi-hit games, 16 stolen bases, .936 fielding).
7. Emily Hennigan, IF, South Williamsport (.400, .522 obp, 5 home runs, 5 doubles, 23 RBIs, 14 runs, .391 with RISP, .979 fielding, just 1 error).
8. Morgan Wetzel, OF, Central Mountain (.461, 3 home runs, 6 doubles, triple, 22 RBIs, 23 runs, 13 multi-hit games).
9. Mykenzie Malacusky, OF, Sullivan County (.492, .522 OBP, 31 hits, 3 triples, 7 doubles, 19 RBIs, 25 runs, hit in 16 of 18 games and 37 of last 39, 107 career hits, 12 multi-hit games, 16 stolen bases).
• Madi Waltman, Warrior Run.
• Savannah Doney, NP-Liberty
• Emily Snyder, Montgomery
• Emma Poorman (11-2, 3.65 ERA, 63 1/3 IP, 39 H, 91 strikeouts)
• Lynna Robertson, Williamsport (13-3, 3.80 ERA, 83 IP, 53 strikeouts)
Cathryn Brought, Wellsboro (10-9, 3.64 ERA, 116 1/3 IP, 116 strikeouts, 3 SHOs) … Mookie Sauers, South Williamsport (7-6, 74 2/3 IP, 60 strikeouts, 1.50 ERA, 22 hits in last 28 innings in last 4 games). … Madison Jean, Loyalsock (8-1) … Taylor Shuman, Montoursville (5-0, 2.73 ERA) … Anne Weller, St. John Neumann (6-9, 3.93 ERA, 82 IP, 97 strikeouts, 401 career strikeouts).
First Team Reserves
Bella Barone, IF, Loyalsock (.467, .533 OBP, home run, 5 doubles, 29 RBIs, 18 runs, 12 multi-hit games). … Annabelle Bergey, OF, Muncy (.483, .581 OBP, 7 doubles, 14 RBIs, 28 runs, 9 multi-hit games, 13 stolen bases, no errors). … Emily Cross, IF, Bucktail (.552, .622 OBP, 37 hits, home run, 3 triples, 10 doubles, 28 RBIs, 37 runs, hit safely in all 22 games, 9 multi-hit games, 20 stolen bases, 85 career hits, 66 RBIs, 73 runs). … Juliana Cruz, IF, Loyalsock (.471, area-best .686 OBP, home runs, triple, 6 doubles, 13 RBIs, 38 runs, 26 stolen bases, more than 100 career hits and 80 career stolen bases). … Mariah Kshir, C, N.P.-Liberty (.434, .524 OBP, home run, 6 doubles, 18 RBIs, 14 runs, 8 multi-hit games). … Taylor McRae, IF, Montgomery (.442, .506 OBP, 34 hits, 3 home run, 6 doubles, triple, 39 RBIs, 31 runs). … Faith Persing, IF, Montgomery (.512, .556 OBP, 42 hits, 2 home runs, 7 triples, 13 doubles, 27 RBIs, 36 runs, just one error). … Marissa Pick, Warrior Run (.347, .448 OBP, 7 home runs, triple, 5 doubles, 26 RBIs, 18 runs, 6 multi-hit games, 2 multi-homer games). … Sammie Reeder, OF, Williamsport (.389, .426 OBP, 9 doubles, 18 RBIs, 15 runs, 6 multi-games, 12 stolen bases, .962 fielding percentage). … Megan Ryder, OF, Hughesville (.363, .568 OBP, triple, 3 double, 11 RBIs, 20 runs, 16 stolen bases). … MacKenzie Weaver, IF, Montoursville (.429, 4 home runs, 8 doubles, triple, 20 RBIs, 21 runs, 11 multi-hit games).
Jena Boyce, OF, Wellsboro (.368, 4 home runs, 3 doubles, 17 RBIs, 22 runs, 9 stolen bases, 10-game hitting streak, 7 multi-hit games). … Jessie Evans, IF, Galeton (.400, .500 OBP, 4 triples, 2 doubles, 21 RBIs, 23 runs, 17 stolen bases). … Jen Frederick, IF, Muncy (.441, .507 OBP, 8 doubles, 23 RBIs, 22 runs, hit in 18 of 21 games, 9 multi-hit games, 14 stolen bases). … Ashley Gardner, C, South (.269, .406 OBP, home run, triple, 2 doubles, 12 RBIs, 16 runs, 11 SBs, .968 fielding percentage). … Maria Helminiak, IF, Neumann (.545, .623 OBP, 2 doubles, 21 RBIs, 9 runs, 7 multi-hit games). … Myka Poorman, IF, Bucktail (.526, .650 OBP, HR, 5 doubles, triple, 28 RBIs, 42 runs, 25 SBs, 9 multi-hit games, .925 fielding percentage, 74 career hits, 65 career RBIs, 84 runs). … Kylie Seagraves, OF, Williamsport (.424, 2 triples, 3 doubles, 21 RBIs, 20 runs, 7 multi-hit games, 11 stolen bases, no errors). … Elaina Stone, IF, Williamsport (.429, .509 OBP, 6 doubles, 15 RBIs, 17 runs, 9 multi-hit games, no strikeouts). … Jade Swartz, C, Warrior Run (.342, .435 obp, 4 2B, 10 RBIs, 8 multi-hit games); Mariah Wright, OF, Williamsport (.378, .439 OBP, triple, 2 doubles, 6 RBIs, 13 runs, hit safely in all 10 games, just 2 strikeouts, 13 stolen bases, no errors).
Breakthrough Underclassman of
Second runner-up–Brynn McRae, Montgomery: One of three outstanding sisters who excelled in their debut years at Montgomery, McRae looks like a player who could be a rock at third base over the next three years. Like her sisters Taylor and Shelby, McRae put up big offensive numbers, hitting .380 with seven doubles, five triples and 18 RBIs. She also compiled a .463 on-base percentage and scored 32 runs while adding four stolen bases.
First runner-up–Valandra McHenry, Warrior Run: She was a reserve when the year began, but by season’s end, McHenry was one of Warrior Run’s most feared hitters and a slick-fielding shortstop. The freshman helped solidify the middle of Warrior Run’s lineup, hitting .367 with three home runs, six doubles and 19 RBIs. McHenry hit go-ahead home runs against Bloomsburg and Loyalsock and scored 24 runs. McHenry kept making strides throughout the season and had at least two hits in a game eight times.
And the winner is … Jordan Burrows, Bucktail: One of many freshmen who made made immediate and outstanding impacts, Burrows developed into one of the Mid-Penn’s premier catchers. She sparked Bucktail’s potent offense from her leadoff spot, hitting .446 with 33 hits, five doubles, 16 RBIs and 35 runs. Burrows delivered one of the biggest hits in program history when she hit a two-out, two-strike, two-run single that tied the district final in the bottom of the seventh and paved the way for a dramatic 4-3 win. She put together an 18-game hitting streak, struck out just twice, delivered 10 multi-hit games and stole 24 bases.
Other Underclassmen to watch in 2020: Gracy Beachel, Warrior Run; Olivia Beck, South; Sarina Beiter, Williamsport; Kerrah Clymer, Wellsboro; Hailey Debrody, Williamsport; Jenna Davis, Hughesville; Shea Floyd, South; Lilly Frederick, Muncy; Julie Green, Bucktail; Nicolette Johnson, Muncy; Kaitlyn Klotz, Montoursville; Lorena Marquardt, Sullivan County; Shelby McRae, Montgomery; Bre O’Dell, Montoursville; Amalie Robertson, Williamsport; Grace Shaible, Loyalsock; Zuzu Shanaway, Neumann; Sarah Sullivan, South; Jenna Waring, Montgomery; Caitlyn Watson, Central Mountain; Saige Whipple, Montgomery.