Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Season Was a Picnic for Greensburg Salem Softball

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Season Was a Picnic for Greensburg Salem Softball

Article excerpt

Greensburg Salem softball coach Jody Morgan may change the date of the Golden Lions' annual picnic.

"We hold a picnic at Newhouse Park in Delmont instead of a banquet," Morgan said. "It's a really nice community park with a covered pavilion. We always schedule the picnic for the week after Memorial Day."

Morgan and her booster club chose May 31 for this year's banquet.

"The big difference with this year's picnic is that we were still playing," Morgan said.

The day before the picnic, Greensburg Salem faced Belle Vernon Area in the WPIAL Class AAA consolation game for third place. The Golden Lions recorded a 1-0 victory to earn their first PIAA berth.

"It was pretty neat to have the picnic before we finished the season," Morgan said. "It was great to talk about the win over Belle Vernon and our first trip to the state tournament."

Greensburg Salem's first PIAA appearance had mixed results. The Golden Lions posted a 16-0 victory against City League representative Carrick in the first round, then dropped a 4-1 decision to WPIAL champion Montour in the quarterfinals.

"I reminded my kids that we finished among the top four teams in the Western half of the state in Class AAA," Morgan said. "That's a great accomplishment."

Morgan also pointed out that Greensburg Salem went further in the state tournament than any team in Westmoreland County, including two of its neighboring rivals.

"Greensburg Central [Catholic] and Hempfield lost in the first round," Morgan said. "We made it to the quarterfinals. That's something we're very proud of."

Greensburg Salem finished the season with a 17-4 record.

"We had a great run and made some school history," said Morgan, who completed her 34th season at the helm. "We're looking forward to improving on that success next year."

That's a strong possibility because the Golden Lions must replace just four starters who graduated.

"We lose all three outfielders and a first baseman," Morgan said. "But the main cogs of our team are coming back."

Left fielder Alex Garsteck, center fielder Alyssa Mellinger, and right fielder Sara Stiffey are the three outfielders. Garsteck had a .575 batting average, three home runs, three doubles and two triples. …

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