Morgan, Greensburg Salem softball team are thriving in postseason
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Greensburg Salem softball coach Jody Morgan admits she's a little surprised her team has advanced to Monday's PIAA Class AAA semifinals.
But she's not complaining. In fact, she's enjoying the ride.
Greensburg Salem (18-2) is one victory away from playing in its first state championship game Friday at Penn State.
Standing in the Golden Lions' way is District 1 runner-up Springfield-Delco (24-3), a team Morgan believes is similar in many ways to her squad. Springfield-Delco defeated Shippensburg (4-2) and St. Mary's (7-0) in the PIAA playoffs.
The teams square off at 4 p.m. Monday at Messiah College in Mechanicsburg.
“I have a film on them, and they have a good pitcher and are strong up the middle with shortstop Tori DePetro and center fielder Taylor Winkelman,” Morgan said. “But they're a team we can beat.
“Since losing to Thomas Jefferson in the WPIAL semifinals, we've been playing well. We've already won a WPIAL title. Why not a state title? We're playing well.”
There are a couple of reasons why Greensburg Salem is in its current position.
First is the play of shortstop Claire Oberdorf, who has pounded 11 home runs, including two in the playoffs. Oberdorf homered to lead off the game against Thomas Jefferson on Thursday.
Second is the consistent play of center fielder Karly Mellinger and second baseman Kellie Hutchinson. Mellinger and Hutchinson had big games against Warren. Morgan calls Hutchinson “Miss May” because she's hitting almost .800 in the playoffs.
There also is the pitching of Melissa Wagner. The Pitt-Johnstown recruit has cut down her walks this season and is averaging 10 strikeouts per game.
“Claire is having an amazing season,” Morgan said, “and Melissa has pitched well in every game. She's having a great season.
“We have a strong hitting team from top to bottom. Our No. 8 hitter, Madison Hantz had the game-winning home run against Thomas Jefferson.”
Springfield-Delco also features a solid lineup. In its victory against St. Mary's, the top seven hitters went 11 for 19 with seven RBIs.
Lead-off hitter Courtney Scarpato, the pitcher, is a speedster, while Winkelman, DePetro and Lauren Scarpato have some power. Winkelman hit a two-run home run against Shippensburg, while Lauren DePetro had a two-run double against St. Mary's.
The only other WPIAL softball team remaining in the playoffs is Neshannock (18-2), which faces a tough opponent in District 6 runner-up Claysburg-Kimmel. The Class A semifinal is at 4 p.m. at Hempfield.
Claysburg-Kimmel advanced by defeating DuBois Central Catholic, 8-2, and Iroquois, 6-1. Neshannock has posted an 11-1 win against Smethport and a 6-1 victory against Burgettstown.
“I thought we looked pretty good,” Neshannock pitcher Madison Shaffer said after the win against Burgettstown. “Offensively, we were strong again.”
Burgettstown coach Mark Deer said of Neshannock's order: “They're like Murderer's Row. They're tough outs.”
The lone baseball team remaining from the WPIAL is a huge surprise: WPIAL Class AAAA champion Seneca Valley (12-11), which plays at 4 p.m. Monday against Conestoga at Green Township Park in Scotland, near Chambersburg.
Paul Schofield is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @Schofield_Trib.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- State Supreme Court Justice McCaffery sent explicit emails
- Truck accident closes all inbound lanes of Parkway West
- West Newton man found dead in helicopter wreckage near Rostraver Airport
- Rossi: Pirates can’t waste McCutchen’s prime
- Penguins release Carcillo from tryout contract
- Pirates’ Martin calls crowd chant ‘pretty special’
- Steelers pressing to create opportunities to get to quarterback
- Giants, Bumgarner shut out Pirates in wild-card game
- East Huntingdon man dies following police chase
- Giants’ Crawford makes history with slam
- Takacs Quartet excels in Haydn, Debussy