Monday's Westmoreland Sports Notebook

Heat week begins; Murrysville wins junior legion state title; Zilli helps lead Johnstown to AAABA national title game

Mon Aug 08, 2022 - 12:01AM

Sean Meyers Sean Meyers

Last Updated: Mon Aug 08, 2022 - 2:37AM

WPIAL football heat week commences

Today represents a significant date on the WPIAL football calendar, as district teams begin heat acclimation week. The required five days of heat acclimation serve as an adjustment period for players before full contact training camp practices can start next week. First scrimmages will be held on Saturday, Aug. 20 with WPIAL football games beginning with optional Week Zero matchups on Friday, Aug. 26.

Murrysville claims junior legion baseball crown

Just a few weeks after winning the Westmoreland County Junior American Legion title, the Murrysville Eagles captured the first state championship in team history, courtesy of an 8-3 victory against Upper Perkiomen last Tuesday at First Commonwealth Field in Homer City. The Eagles first defeated Connellsville via forfeit in the semifinals earlier in the day. In the title game, Upper Perkiomen fired the first salvo in the first inning. Playing as the home team, Murrysville responded in the second, scoring twice. NJ Ramchandran scored on a two-out single by Anthony DePaulo to tie the score at 1-1. The Eagles took the lead on a subsequent single by Anthony Mitchell. Murrysville added two more runs in the third, as Josh Hudak and Jonah Willochell provided RBI singles. In the fourth, the Eagles scored three times, highlighted by back-to-back doubles by Brady Yarabinetz and Hudak to gain a 7-1 edge. Hudak earned the pitching victory, and was also named the top hitter for the tournament, going 2-for-4 with three RBIs in the contest. Additionally, Chase Lemke had two hits, scored a run, and was named the overall MVP of the tournament, while Ramchandran, who worked two scoreless innings in the semifinals, was honored as the top pitcher.

Zilli helps lead Johnstown to AAABA national title game

Former Hempfield Area and current Seton Hill baseball player Christian Zilli helped lead the Paul Carpenter Capital Advisors to the AAABA National Championship game in Johnstown. Paul Carpenter came up short in the final, losing to New Orleans 5-1 at Point Stadium. In the tournament, Zilli batted .500 and hit a home run in the championship game. He was given the Local Franchise MVP award by the Tribune-Democrat for his performance.

Mount Pleasant’s Hutter picks Bowling Green

After reopening her recruitment during her senior softball season, Mount Pleasant Area standout Katie Hutter recently announced her commitment to Bowling Green State University. Hutter, who played both the infield and outfield during her time with the Vikings, had previously been committed to the University of Akron. A key cog of the Vikings 2021 WPIAL and PIAA championship team, Hutter also garnered interest from George Mason University and several PSAC schools. This past season, she helped propel the Vikings to a mark of 10-10, including a playoff triumph in the WPIAL Class 3A first round.

Griffins football pegged fifth in PSAC

After one of the best seasons in program history, the Seton Hill University football team was predicted to finish in a tie for fifth in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference West Division this upcoming campaign. The PSAC Preseason Coaches Poll released last week has the Griffins slotted behind IUP and Slippery Rock, which tied for first, as well as California and Gannon. Seton Hill was deadlocked with Edinboro in fifth place, ahead of Mercyhurst and Clarion. A year ago, the Griffins went 5-6 overall, including 2-5 in the PSAC West. SHU kicks off the 2022 season with a road matchup against Wheeling University on Thursday, Sept. 1.

Six SVC football players recognized

Saint Vincent College hosted the 2022 Presidents’ Athletic Conference Football Media Day last Wednesday, and the Bearcats were well-represented on the preseason watch list. Six Saint Vincent players received recognition, including quarterback Brady Walker, offensive linemen Nathan Bettwy and Christian Ciecierski, receiver Molayo Irefin, linebacker Joanes Polynice, and cornerback Jaden Pratt. Collectively, SVC was selected sixth of the 11 teams in the PAC for the upcoming campaign. In 2021, the Bearcats went 5-6, including 4-5 in the conference ledger.