Tuesday, May 29, 2012

California's Conway, Hartman honored by WPIAL baseball coaches

California High School annually puts out a competitive baseball team, and the Trojans frequently compete for section and district championships.

California has won three WPIAL titles and played for a PIAA championship in 1984 when there were only two classifications in the sport.

This season, California is 19-0 for the first time in a long time (possibly ever) and the Trojans play Neshannock Wednesday afternoon in the WPIAL Class A championship game at Consol Energy Park at 5:30 p.m.

"Coming in, our goal was to be competitive," California coach Don Hartman said. "This group came together and the chemistry is outstanding. To say it was the least expected of the teams we've had make it this far, it was."

At this point, it may seem difficult to believe that California didn't enter the season with such lofty expectations. That may be one small reason why Hartman was honored by the WPIAL Baseball Coaches Association as the Class A Coach of the Year. Senior pitcher T.D. Conway, who is 13-0 with 120 strikeouts, is the Class A Pitcher of the Year.

Former Canon-McMillan coach Steve Bucci was the Class AAA Coach of the Year for his work at South Park.

Player of the Year
AAAA - J.J. Matijevic, Norwin
AAA - Zarley Zalewski, Valley
AA - Ben Hartz, Shady Side Academy
A - John Sansone, Neshannock

Pitcher of the Year
AAAA - Anthony Garofalo, Plum
AAA - Greg Schneider, Thomas Jefferson
AA - Anthony Carusone, Ellwood City
A - T.D. Conway, California

Coach of the Year
AAAA - Mike Liebdzinski, Norwin
AAA - Steve Bucci, South Park
AA - Skooter Roebuck, Brownsville
A - Don Hartman, California

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