The senior class hopes to break the Greensburg Salem baseball record in a close match

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Monday, March 14, 2022 | 18:27

Eight seniors are returning to Greensburg Salem in hopes of helping the Golden Lions baseball team return to the WPIAL playoffs for the first time since 2019.

With the 2020 season halted by the coronavirus pandemic, 2021 brought a return to the diamond with little success as Greensburg Salem struggled to reach a 4-10, 4-8 record in Section 3-4A, which seemingly could have been better.

“We lost four one-off matches that ended until the end,” said coach Bill Wisniewski. “That’s the difference between Team 4-8 and Team 8-4.”

In their sparkling 2018 season, Wisniewski’s Golden Lions entered the playoffs with only two losses, but added a heartbreaking third when they did not decide 1-0 for the eventual WPIAL New Castle champion in the 4A quarter-finals.

“This group of seniors has been here and they know what it means to be that team,” Wisniewski said. “It’s good that they could have experienced it, even though they were in high school at the time.”

Catcher / pitcher Hayden Teska, who led Greensburg Salem last season with a batting average of 0.405, is one of the team’s returning seniors.

Although he was one of the Golden Lions’ top baseball players, it is football that is in his future after former Greensburg quarterback Salem prematurely pledged to play in Division II Seton Hill.

“I saw a lot of weight from his shoulders because of that,” Wisniewski said. “I believe this year will be a great season for us.” It will be fun to watch him. We are definitely counting on him. “

Senior outfielder Dylan Sarsfield equaled Teska for a team lead last season with 17 hits at 0.370.

Right-hander Jake Smith led the Golden Lions pitching team a year ago as a junior, scoring 4-0 with an ERA of 4.12, which is responsible for all of their winning decisions.

“He’s a great pitcher because he’s thinking about the game, hitting places and letting the defense work,” Wisniewski said.

He will be reckoned with junior Owen Tutich, another right-hander, Wisniewski said, adding that Tutich will also have the opportunity to play in reserve.

The list of seniors is completed by the second basic player Caden Cioffi, the catcher Dom Falvo, the extreme player / pitcher Matt Kaboly, the middle player / pitcher Brayden Merichko and the first basic player / pitcher Ethan Heese, who dropped out last season with a knee injury.

“What’s nice about this senior team is that they played last year as juniors,” Wisniewski said. “They haven’t had that experience with a covid a year before. They had a baptism at a high school baseball last year. “

Wisniewski said he believed his players were ready to turn the page after last year’s frustrating season.

“We were looking for ways to lose, instead of expecting a victory,” he said. “We had a great offseason and hopefully this will translate into a better approach to each match.”

When Wisniewski enters his ninth season as a Golden Lions coach, it is true that he feels as hungry to return to the post-season season as his players.

He is ready and willing to help them in any way, he said, but it is up to them to perform.

“I keep telling them, ‘I’m not setting a bar. The bar is as it is, “he said. “The coach’s job is to help you get to that point, to help you understand that as time goes on, the players get bigger, stronger and faster and you have to keep up.”

Wisniewski also hopes for some contributions from the subclass. He said that while the team has strong leadership, the roster must be completed by juniors, sophomores and freshmen.

“They’ll take the role we need for the team,” he said, “whether it’s a defensive role, a bitter runner, whatever, we’ll definitely count on them learning the speed of the game and being ready.” for anything. “

Tags: Greensburg Salem

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