Sunday, March 30, 2008

Section 1-A supremacy

It's safe to say that, for most of this decade, the road to a WPIAL Class A baseball championships travels through Section 1.

Three of the past five champions – Carmichaels in 2003, 2005 and California in 2006 – hail from the section. In 2004, the Mikes were WPIAL runners-up, as were the Trojans a year ago.

In 2002, Carmichaels beat Bentworth, another Section 1 team, in the third-place game.

In 2001, California won the WPIAL, while Jefferson-Morgan lost the third-place game.

This year, Carmichaels is a highly regarded team and, despite several key injuries, has not allowed a run in its first two games. Jefferson-Morgan, Bentworth and California are all powerful offensive teams.

It could be another banner year for Section 1, a group of competitive, close-knit teams.

"It's not just our section, it's the people I'm around," Mikes coach Dave Bates explained. "With Rob Cole being my assistant coach, it's kind of funny. Like I can tell him what to do. He knows the game as well as anyone I know. Two of my best friends are Rob and (Jefferson-Morgan coach) John Curtis."

Bates played for Curtis at Jefferson-Morgan.

"We get together and have breakfast every Sunday," Bates said. "Then, there's (California coach) Don Hartman. He doesn't live as close but, again, he's one of my closest friends in baseball. These are the guys that can end up breaking your heart in the playoffs. Yet, I traveled to see California make their run through states. Section 1 is something unique."


Anonymous said...

"as were the Vulcans a year ago."

Mike, I know it's hard to accept, but you have to: Cal U's basketball season is over. It's not easy, I know, but we'll get through this, trust me. It won't be long before next season begins and you can place all your hopes on the Vulcans again. The sun will shine again.

mike_kovak said...

I have yet to get over Black Wednesday.

Someone, please tell me how many days till football season?

Anonymous said...

Didn't you get a copy of the "Lucky" swimsuit calendar from Joe. I'm sure the date for the opening game is highlighted there.