Young Wildcats place third at Titusville, play in St. Marys this weekend

Bob Parana - Staff Writer

Tri-County Wildcats head coach Pat Weaver has seen his 14-under softball team progress as their travel season has moved forward. Last weekend they placed third at the Lightning in the Valley Titusville. The team made up of players from Johnsonburg, Wilcox, and Kane returns to action this weekend at the St. Marys tournament. Last weekend they placed third at the Lightning in the Valley Titusville. The team made up of players from Johnsonburg, Wilcox, and Kane returns to action this weekend at the St. Marys tournament.

“We’ve made a 110-percent improvement. Kids have really picked up on things. You can see how they’ve grown. We had girls that have never played before and now their fielding, hitting the ball and doing well,” Weaver said before Wednesday’s practice at the Johnsonburg Knothole Fields.

For a team made up of mostly 12 and 13-year olds, the Wildcats have been able to hold their own against teams dominated by 14-year old players. Weaver sees this as something that has helped his team bond. “There’s a big difference in playing older kids. I think the girls have responded well and have become very tight being underdogs. That’s good to see,” the coach said.

At Titusville, the Wildcats only loss was to the eventual champion Cranberry, according to the Tri-County coach. They will be in a bracket this weekend in St. Marys that will include 12 teams including several that are well noted in the outlying areas from Mercer, Erie, Cranberry, and DuBois as well as St. Marys.

Weaver has enjoyed coaching the young team along with Leo Giebel, Don Nero, and Mike Dunworth. “This has been a great summer. We have fun with all the parents and kids. I think the girls are really developing into a good team. They have been working hard and enjoy being together. It’s been a great experience,” he said.

Members of the team include Ragen Weaver, Cora Geibel, Natalie Dunworth, Kate Parana, Sara Anderson, Shelby Sorg, Zoey Grunthaner, Sydney Slater, Jaidyn Hodgdon, Sofyia Cherry, and Jackie Davis. The Wildcats will be competing in three future tournaments including one in Kittanning September 26 and another in DuBois in October.

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