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Vincentian softball under new direction

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Louis Raggiunti | Pine Creek Journal
Vincentian's Danielle Melvin will help lead the Lady Royals softball squad this season.
Top high school sports
Wednesday, April 10, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

The Vincentian softball team is in a bit of a transition as Joe Baczek takes over the coaching duties.

Baczek inherits a program that has enjoyed its share of success in recent history, but he brings 40 years of coaching experience. The one thing that stood out to the coach right away?

“These are the smartest kids I have ever coached. I have coached boys and girls (over the years), and these kids pick things us fast,” Baczek said. “This is a good core of kids, and it does not take them long to pick things up.”

The talent begins with seniors Katie Yauch and Danielle Melvin, players Baczek said are good leaders. Both will play college ball, but Melvin will pitch and play first base for the Lady Royals and Yauch will play third and catch.

Kim Corcoran, a transfer from Fox Chapel will help shoulder the pitching duties this season. Also in the pitching rotation will be Natalie Milas, who also can play first base.

Sophomore Kelsey Hunter will handle the catching duties this season and could line up at third, as well.

Rounding out the infield will be shortstop Mary Mazur, whom Baczek said is a “tough little kid,” and Serena Morreale, who will play second base.

The outfield will be Kara Shannon, Katelyn Donnelly and Rachel Balkovec in center.

Baczek is encouraged by the majority of the girls playing travel softball and their fundamental foundation.

“They have great attitudes and a great desire to learn,” he said. “They are 4.0 students and are going to go off to college.”

The fundamental foundation is something Baczek couldn't stress enough, saying it's 90 percent of the game.

“I want them respect everyone and put God in their lives,” Baczek said. “When you coach young people, they become your family. I have 10 daughters on the team.”

Jerry Clark is a sports editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-779-6979 or

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