Deer Lakes senior catcher captures VND softball honors
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Player of the Year — Hannah Blinn, Deer Lakes, Senior, Catcher
Deer Lakes softball players called Hannah Blinn the “team mother” because of her dependable leadership and ability to nurture teammates through adversity.
The senior catcher and captain watched over the team with an instinctive patience and guidance that only a four-year starter could provide.
She also led by example at the plate, proving to be arguably the toughest out on a firm-hitting team.
For her efforts, Blinn is the Valley News Dispatch Softball Player of the Year.
Plum's Jordan Seneca, Leechburg's Kenzie Young, Highlands' Gabby Miller and Deer Lakes' Tiffany Edwards also were considered.
Blinn, an Allegheny College recruit, hit .448 (30 for 67) with 35 RBI for the Lancers, who returned to the WPIAL Class AA championship game and made the second round of the PIAA playoffs for the second straight time.
Deer Lakes played in 15 playoff games during her three seasons.
You struck out only once all season. Where does that disciplineat the plate come from?
A lot of it is from knowing that if I get it in play, anything can happen. I have become such an aggressive hitter. I am a hitter, though, not a home-run hitter.
The team came back from a 7-0 deficit in the semifinals to defeat Beaver, 11-7, and get back to the WPIAL Class AA championship game. What do you remember most from that game?
(When play resumed after a 93-minute weather delay) I was behind in the count and I told myself to make the next one hurt. I hit the next pitch and it was the greatest feeling. That third inning, the energy in the dugout was amazing.
The team plays backward softball to relax during some practices, with batters hitting from the opposite side of the plate. Who is the best backward player on the team?
CiCi (Sarver) is pretty good as a lefty. It's a lot of fun, but it's hard.
The team has a tradition of going out for Chinese food before the playoffs. Word is you got an interesting message in your fortune cookie?
It said, “Great things are yet to come.” That did happen, and it was inspirational even though we lost (in the WPIAL final).
You're headed to Allegheny College, which had a big season and returns most of its starters, many of whom are from the A-K Valley. Do you think you'll have a chance to play catcher?
I think I do. The girl there (Valley grad Katrina George) is pretty good. If I can hit, I'd be OK with moving to the outfield or first base.
You work at Michael's arts and crafts store?
Yes. I love to craft. I get that from my mom. I am making a Fourth of July T-shirt with spray paint.
Your sister, Sarah, was a freshman starter at third base. What advice can you give her if she moves to catcher next season?
She is going to be in a big leader role. I told her don't be afraid to be the leader.
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.