Grove City College’s Kaitlyn Constantino, Former Clarion Area Standout Named To 2023 PAC Softball All-Conference Team

Unless otherwise noted, photos courtesy Grove City College – Above photo courtesy “Grove City College/Dave Miller” – Kaitlyn in the circle

Former Clarion Area softball standout Kaitlyn Constantino, a member of the Grove City College Wolverines was named to the Presidents Athletic Conference’s (PAC) 2023 Softball All-Conference Team, announced on Tuesday, May 9th.

Kaitlyn was selected as Honorable Mention at pitcher.

Leading the Wolverines with 11 wins this season, the third-highest number of wins in program history, Kaitlyn finished the season at 11-7 overall and had a 3.55 Earned Run Average.

In conference play, Constantino went 7-3, in the PAC, recording three shutouts and registering a 3.10 ERA, while holding conference hitters to a .259 batting average.

Just a junior, Kaitlyn is currently in ninth place all-time on Grove City’s career strikeout list, fanning 163 batters. 

Last year, Kaitlyn was honored as a 2021-2022 Easton/NFCA Division III All-America Scholar-Athlete by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA).

Kaitlyn is one of five Wolverines named to the PAC All-Conference Team.

The others include: senior pitcher/first baseman Janessa Dawson and sophomore third baseman Rachel Zong, on the First Team; sophomore second baseman Maci Linhart named to the Second Team; and senior shortstop Lexi Buck, who joins Kaitlyn with an Honorable Mention selection.

Grove City Coach Kristen (Hughes) Cramer

Wolverines Coach Kristen (Hughes) Cramer had this to say about Kaitlyn and the Wolverines, Spring of 2023 was a historical season for our program.  I’m extremely proud of my entire squad and what they accomplished together.  It took all 23 of the Wolverines to make it happen.

In regards to Kaitlyn Constantino, I am so glad she’s here at Grove City College. She is quite the competitor. I think Kaitlyn should be proud of the personal milestones she reached this year.  She led us to 11 victories this season, which is the third-highest sum in program history. Kaitlyn has also moved into ninth place on Grove City’s career strikeout list with 163 total Ks. 

And while numbers are great, there’s just so much more to love about Kaitlyn than what happens on the field. It’s the intangibles that truly make her an asset. 

We’re excited to see what the future holds for her and for the Wolverines.

Another player from the Keystone Shortway Athletic Conference, made the All-PSAC Team, Karns City alum Mackenzie Dunn, from Chatham University, in Pittsburgh, was named Honorable Mention at catcher. Another player, hailing from District Nine, sophomore Mia Meholick from DuBois, who plays for Westminster College, was named to the Second Team at catcher.

The complete 2023 All-PAC Team is listed below the article.

Kaitlyn, who didn’t get to compete for her senior season in high school, with the Bobcats, due to the Coronavirus shutdown, had a stellar high school career, nonetheless. She was named First Team All-State pitcher by the Pennsylvania High School Softball Association (PHSSA) after her junior season in 2019. She went 17-6 for Coach Dan Shofestall’s Bobcats, who were District Nine Class-A runners-up and PIAA State quarterfinalists. She struck out 245 batters, setting the team record, while hitting .500 during the campaign.

Photo courtesy of Kim Constantino: Former Clarion Area Assistant John Stroup (Left) And Former Head Coach Dan Shofestall enjoying time with their Bobcat Alums, Kaitlyn and Noel (a Wolverines double-header home win against Thiel on April 6th).

Kaitlyn was also named First Team All-Keystone Shortway Athletic Conference, as well as, Pitcher of the Year.

Kaitlyn was also named Second Team All-State at third base, by the PHSSA, as a sophomore in 2018.

Coach Shofestall shared this about Kaitlyn, It was nice seeing Kaitlyn being honored by the Presidents Athletic Conference from the leagues head coaches. Kaitlyn and her teammates and team had a very good year on the field.

As her High School coach and even before that in her youth, I remember Kaitlyn as a student in the art of pitching. Like any good pitcher it wasn’t always easy for her and there were many frustrations, pot holes and disappointments along the way. But pitching isn’t supposed to be easy and only the tough and determined ones become very good  at it and Kaitlyn is a great reflection of that. 

From her youth as a girl to present day she’s put in the hours and she’s matured over the years. Kaitlyn always understood the importance of time and the value of every second of practice and preparation and that was important in her development.

I’ve said many times before that when one of our players is honored in athletics, academics, the band or any other endeavor they’re involved in,  that it is a great source of pride for the school, teachers, coaches, teammates, family,  alumni and community. 

I would like to congratulate Kaitlyn on being named to the All-PAC Team and a job well done.  

Kaitlyn reflected on the Wolverines’ 2023 season, including thanks to her coaches, her teammates and her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

This season has been one of the best and most memorable seasons that I have been a part of yet! I am so thankful to have gone through such a successful season with the most talented group of girls I know.

Our goal this year was to ultimately play to the best of our abilities for the glory of God. When someone gets a hit on the team, we chant, “AO1.” This means that we play for an Audience of One (for Christ) and that our successes come from Him alone, not from our own abilities.

As I reflect on this past season, I would not have had one of my best seasons without every one of my teammates. Each and every one of us, whether it’s on the field or in the dugout, has a role on the team that we embrace. No matter who is playing on the field at the time, everyone just wants the absolute best for those people and supports those who are in the game at the time.

The amount of love and encouragement that we show to one another as sisters in Christ is just unfathomable.

I am extremely thankful for Coach Cramer and Coach O as they have not only been the best coaches, but the best mentors to me throughout this year. They truly care so deeply about each and every one of us, and continue to pour their time and devotions into developing us as strong Christian women.

I also want to thank the 5 seniors for their tremendous leadership and mentorship they have displayed throughout the season, as they were one of the main reasons for our accomplishments this year. Even though they will not be with us for this year’s season, our coaches have always told us, “Wolverines Forever.” This means that even though our seniors are not with us in person for this upcoming year, they will still be a part of our team, just in a different but supportive role.

Specifically, I want to thank my catcher for the past 3 years, Emily Smyth, for being one of my biggest supporters behind the plate. I would not have had such a great season on the mound this year without her leadership and encouragement she brought to every game. Emily has been one of the most patient and humble catchers that I have played with, in which her presence on the field would never go unnoticed. Even though Em has decided to pursue her nursing career this summer with her dream job and not coming back next season, I know that she will be successful in all that she does in the future.

I will definitely miss our pre game routines and ongoing conversations during each game!

And Kaitlyn’s hopes for next season? I am looking forward to my senior season, as I am hoping to finally become stronger and 100% healthy for this upcoming year for my teammates. We have such a talented group of girls coming back next season and I know that as long as we keep playing for Christ, we can achieve whatever we set our minds to.

One of the biggest blessings that has come out of GCC softball is that I have developed such a deep friendship with every girl on the team, and have even found some of my closest friends from the team. From workouts and church dates with Brooke Brodie, to studying sessions and hangs with Maci Linhart, to post-game dances with Kam Weissinger and Em Wentworth, to constant hangs with Ella Krarup and Lauren McNeil, to playing with my hometown girl Noel Anthony, to valuable memories with the rest of my team, this season was filled with the best group of girls who will all be back to keep pushing one another to play with love and for the Lord.

And about those most responsible for her success, Most importantly, I want to thank my parents (Dave and Kim Constantino) and sister (Alexis Constantino) for their constant support and love they show me each and everyday. No matter what I am doing, they just want the absolute best for me and will encourage me throughout my academics, athletics, relationships, and faith. I would not be the woman and player I am today without my family, and I will continue to do all things through Christ who strengthens me!! The joy that I ultimately get on the mound for each game, ONLY comes from having a personal relationship with Christ, to where I can go confident and go bold in all that I do!

In Closing Kaitlyn said, Thankful for such a great season this year and SO looking forward to my senior season!! 

(Congratulations to Kaitlyn and her parents, Grove City College and the Softball Team, the Clarion Area School District and Softball Team and the Clarion Community!!!! Kaitlyn you (and Noel) make us Clarion proud!!!! Thanks to Grove City College and Kim Constantino for their photos and to Coaches Cramer and Dan Shofestall for their quotes!!)

2023 Presidents Athletic Conference Softball All-Stars

PAC Award Winners
Player of the Year: Geneva senior outfielder Sarah Johnson (Highlands Ranch, Colo./Mountain Vista)
Pitcher of the Year: Waynesburg sophomore Sydney Wilson (Pentress, W.Va./Clay-Battelle)
Newcomer of the Year: Waynesburg sophomore second base Grace Higgins (Canonsburg, Pa./Canon-McMillan)
Coach of the Year: Waynesburg fourth-year head coach Brett Shimek

All-PAC First Team
PositionNameClassSchoolHometown | High School
CBrin HunterSr.WaynesburgWest Alexander, Pa./McGuffey
1BJulia HartJr.GenevaProspect, Pa./Slippery Rock
1BMackenzie LatessSr.WestminsterNew Castle, Pa./Laurel
2BGrace HigginsSo.WaynesburgCanonsburg, Pa./Canon-McMillan
SSKimberly McDanielsSo.FranciscanTucson, Ariz./Salpointe Catholic
SSAlexis YatesSr.WestminsterOakdale, Pa./South Fayette
3BRachel ZonaSo.Grove CityNew Castle, Pa./New Castle
OFSarah JohnsonSr.GenevaHighlands Ranch, Colo./Mountain Vista
OFAlex DillnerJr.Saint VincentIrwin, Pa./Norwin
OFBrooke AtkinsSr.WestminsterNew Castle, Pa./Laurel
DPSophia GodzakSo.AlleghenyBelle Vernon, Pa./Belle Vernon
UTILJanessa DawsonSr.Grove CityZanesville, Ohio/Tri-Valley
PAleya BelardinelliSo.AlleghenyMelbourne, Fla./West Shore
PSydney WilsonSo.WaynesburgPentress, W.Va./Clay-Battelle
PMadison BrownGrad.WestminsterLisbon, Ohio/East Liverpool
All-PAC Second Team
PositionNameClassSchoolHometown | High School
CCameron LongJr.AlleghenyMidlothian, Va./Midlothian
1BSofia GenareoSo.AlleghenyLakewood, N.Y./Southwestern Central
1BElla BrookmanJr.WaynesburgWashington, Pa./Chartiers-Houston
2BMaci LinhartSo.Grove CityColumbiana, Ohio/Columbiana
SSPeyton EckenrodeSr.W&JYork Haven, Pa./Northeastern
SSKayla GrattonJr.WaynesburgMonroeville, Pa./Gateway
3BSydney SenayJr.WaynesburgCanonsburg, Pa./Canon-McMillan
OFReghan BenschoterSr.WaynesburgNewark, Ohio/Granville
OFJasmine DeMaskeFr.WaynesburgWaynesburg, Pa./Jefferson-Morgan
OFAshley WireSr.WestminsterPoland, Ohio/Poland Seminary
DPJessica LaPorteJr.Saint VincentPittsburgh, Pa./Keystone Oaks
UTILMia MeholickSo.WestminsterDuBois, Pa./DuBois Central Catholic
PHaley SmithSr.GenevaJoshua Tree, Calif./Yucca Valley
PAutumn StempleSrWaynesburgMorgantown, W.Va./University
PElizabeth MalczakJr.WestminsterGrove City, Pa./Grove City
Honorable Mention All-PAC
PositionNameClassSchoolHometown | High School
CMackenzie DunnSr.ChathamButler, Pa./Karns City
1BDestiny GoodnightJr.BethanyYoungstown, Ohio/Ursuline
2BKylie HeidFr.ThielMonaca, Pa./Central Valley
SSLexi BuckSr.Grove CityAkron, Ohio/Lake Center Christian
3BKylee YothersSr.ThielIndian Head, Pa./Connellsville
OFSamantha PhillipsFr.AlleghenyPittsburgh, Pa./Mt. Lebanon
OFPaige ShafticGrad.ChathamNew Castle, Pa./New Castle
OFPayton JamesFr.GenevaMcKinney, Texas/McKinney
OFJulia DiPietro-HarveyFr.W&JPittsburgh, Pa./Taylor Allderdice
DPKaitlyn CollinsSr.ChathamRed Lion, Pa./Red Lion
DPPeri CeasriSr.GenevaEl Dorado Hills, Calif./Vista Del Lago
UTILMorgan HueySr.BethanyHermitage, Pa./Hickory
PVictoria MurrenFr.ChathamNew Oxford, Pa./Bermudian Springs
PKaitlyn ConstantinoJr.Grove CityClarion, Pa./Clarion
POlivia BushoreSo.Saint VincentClaysburg, Pa./Claysburg-Kimmel