Dons Look to Three-Peat
By KYLE LUTZ
WEIRTON — When facing the Madonna softball team last year, a team knew that it was going to have to play its ‘A’ game. A senior-laden group compiled a 17-7 record in 2016 and also secured a second consecutive 1A OVAC championship.
Even though seven players are gone from that team due to graduation, and the Blue Dons only having 11 players, teams will still need to bring their ‘A’ game. That’s because one of the best batteries in the state of West Virginia is back.
With the graduation of Courtney Kaczmarek, Sarah Travaglino, Taylor Thompson, Dekota McCombs, Rebecca Holt, Megan Boniti and Mikaela Lenhart, this dynamic duo is looking for another successful season in pitcher Katie Gasvoda and catcher Sophia Recrosio.
“My battery was very good and I had a lot of seniors backing them up,” Blue Dons coach Chris Conti said. “It was just a very talented team.”
Gasvoda is a junior coming off a stellar season in the circle. Compiling a record of 14-5 with an ERA of 1.68, she struck out 150 batters. She was also 1A Conference Player of the Year for two straight years., As for Recrosio, seeing her numbers, one would never believe it was her first year in a varsity sport. Recrosio belted an eye-popping 50 hits including 12 doubles, two triples and 22 RBI. The most impressive stat: her batting average was .617.
“I’m kind of putting the load on these two shoulders this year,” Conti said. “Because they are two good players. Katie is a very strong pitcher and has a very strong work ethic. So does Sophia. She has great work ethic.”
The Blue Dons do not have a senior in their lineup. Gianna Mascio is a returning starter from last year’s squad who will see time at shortstop or second base. Trying softball for the first time in her high school tenure will be junior Kasey Canei and will see time at first base. Another junior, Keara Kush, a transfer from Weir will play in the outfield.
The sophomores are Gia Riccadonna, (OF), Mikayla Sole (2B, 3B) and Weir transfer Karli Sutton (P, OF). Rocrosio might also see some time at center field.
The freshmen are Addie Backel (IF), Megan Maus (IF) and Jaedyn Kush (3B, C).
“Every one is going to be playing,” Conti said. “That’s just the way it’s got to be this year.”
March 18: at Buffalo (2) noon
March 21: Cameron 6 p.m.
March 22: at Wheeling Central 6 p.m.
March 24: Clarksburg Notre Dame 5 p.m.
March 25: Valley (2) 1 p.m.
March 28: at Steubenville Catholic 5 p.m.
March 30: Weir 5 p.m.
March 31: at Linsly 5:30 p.m.
April 1: at Wellsville (2) noon
April 5: Toronto 5 p.m.
April 7: Steubenville Catholic 5 p.m.
April 8: Bishop Donahue (2) 3 p.m.
April 11: at Toronto 5 p.m.
April 12: at Conotton Valley 5:30 p.m.
April 18: Conotton Valley 5:30 p.m.
April 20: at Weir 5 p.m.
April 21: at Hundred 5 p.m.
April 22 at Clay-Battelle (2) 1 p.m.