Coach Shofestall Shares Lady Cats Softball Season Summary (06/12/17)

(By Clarion Manage Dan Shofestall)

The Clarion Softball season recently came to an end in Brockway, as the Lady Cats lost to Elk County Catholic in the consolation game of the D9 playoffs 12-2. The Bobcats end their season with a Final Record of 12-10. It was a tale of two seasons as the team limped out to a 2-7 start and were in great peril of not making the playoffs. The Bobcats caught fire in the second half of the season though, as they put together a 9 game winning  streak to qualify for the D9 Playoffs as the sixth seed.

The team then made the long trek to Cameron County in the opening round of the playoffs and upset the number three seed Red Raiders, in convincing fashion, by a 12-0 score. That propelled them into a semifinal game with Coudersport. The game was a rematch of last year’s game which Clarion won 4-2. The score was reversed this year, however, as the Falcons won a well-played, hard fought battle 4-2. Clarion was then eliminated by Elk County Catholic in the consolation game.

The 2017 campaign saw the Clarion girls rebound from a poor start to a dominating performance down the stretch, as they played for their playoff lives. During their win streak the Bobcats outscored their opposition 125 runs to 20.

The team was Blessed with two outstanding seniors in Cora Zerfoss and Leticia Negri.

Cora was a Team Captain and catcher for the team. She was also the leadoff hitter and excelled on the base paths. She also was the deserving winner of the sixth annual Alan Peterson Academic Achievement Award, which was a great honor for her. She was an outstanding four year starter for the Bobcats.

Leticia was an Exchange student from South America. This was the first time she played softball and she did a fantastic job. She worked hard in practice to make herself and her team better. She was warm hearted and caring and gained the respect of both her teammates and the coaching staff.

Both Cora and Leticia made numerous contributions to clarion Softball and will be deeply missed. The team wishes the best for both of them as they move on to bigger and better things.

The team also had a strong junior class who will be called upon to lead and guide the team in 2018. Alexis Constantino, MacKenzie Ditullio, Sydney Kiser, Sadie Rudesyle, Liz Saver and Maya Thornton will be asked to take on even bigger roles in the team’s development and growth next year. These six girls all improved greatly from the previous year and were hard workers in practice and matured as leaders throughout the year.

This year’s sophomores also had a very good year, as Carly Best, Lindsey Kemmer and Hailey Sintobin were part of a group that got better and better as the season wore on. They worked hard in practice and played pivotal roles for the team this year.

This year’s new Freshman players also gave the team a big lift. Kaitlyn Constantino, Alana McMasters and Tori Vega were all a part of the team’s success. Some big days are ahead in the future for these three Bobcats if they continue to work hard and stay positive.

Many thanks should be handed out to the coaching staff of Randy Reynolds, John Stroup, Dave Constantino, Katie Wenner, Keanna Over and score keeper Jeff Rudesyle, as they put in countless hours with the team and the girls throughout the season.

Also thanks to the Booster Club for all of the work they do behind the scenes. A special shout out to Booster officers Dana Rudesyle, Shawn Zerfoss, Joyce Ditullio, Jess Moore and Juanice Vega who were a big help for the team and the coaches this year. The new uniforms were a big hit with the girls and fans alike.

And last but not least, a big thank you goes out to the parents of the team. It’s not always easy in spring sports as games, practice times and venues can be changed in an instance for a variety of reasons. Your patience and support for the team is something that is not overlooked and we thank you so much for all of the sacrifices you make to help the team be successful.

So now we move on towards the 2018 season. The coaches and players had some productive talks with each other at the final team meeting. There seems to be a lot of positive energy and commitment towards next year which is always good to hear. With a strong freshman class expected to come out next year I know everyone is looking forward to the 2018 season.

(Thanks to Coach Dan Shofestall for this article. GREAT SEASON, LADY CATS!!!!)