Valley News Dispatch spotlight athletes: Riverview's Dom Conte, Burrell's Lizzie Weimer
Report card: Conte is a key player and team captain for the Raiders (6-0). As a pitcher he is 3-0 with 23 strikeouts, including a career-high 13 in a 4-1 win over West Shamokin. He sports a .500 batting average and three doubles and a triple are among his 10 hits. He also plays shortstop.
What are your individual goals this season?
I want to get to know my teammates more. I want to work and get better. I want to make it to the playoffs and go far.
What is the mental approach you take as a pitcher?
Sometimes you try to get ahead of yourself. You have to focus pitch by pitch, and visualize each one and throw it where you see it.
Are you more of a patient hitter or do you go after the first good pitch you see?
I try to be aggressive most of the time. If the first pitch is there I like to go after it. Usually in high school it's a first-pitch fastball.
Any college plans yet and will you play baseball at the next level?
Not really. I'm looking at Clarion University. ... I'm not sure yet; and yes I will play baseball.
How did you feel when you notched your career-high in strikeouts against West Shamokin?
It was nice to know my teammates were backing me up, and even if I didn't strike them out they would be behind me every play.
Sport: Track and field
Report card: In her first varsity track meet, the Tri-State Coaches Invitational at West Mifflin, Weimer not only set personal bests in the shot put and discus, but also broke school records in both events. Her throw in the shot put traveled 37 feet, 10 inches and was good enough for second place. She has since bettered that mark. In the discus, she threw 119-4 and took third.
Did you know you broke the school records at West Mifflin?
Yes I did. I was extremely happy. I was surprised because in discuss I haven't broken 115 feet in two years. It's such a good feeling to break your personal records.
The weather conditions were not ideal for record-breaking throws, with some light snow and cold temperatures. How did you manage to cope with that aspect of the meet?
It all comes from the heart. You have to block out the distractions. We've had four meets canceled because of weather conditions. You have to persevere through whatever conditions you're put in.
Did you expect to do that well in your first meet?
No I didn't. I wanted to break my personal records, but I wasn't expecting to break them at my first meet.
What do you tell yourself right before you stepped into the circle?
(That) I can do it. My favorite quote from my dad is to ‘just make it happen.'
Now that you've broken the school records, what are your goals for the rest of the season?
My goals are to keep improving and every meet give it all I have. Also to keep my heart set on track because it's one thing I absolutely love.
— D.J. Vasil