WSL Softball All-Stars Cited
Compiled by Frank Rizzo -- July
Beth Fanning ð HM ð catcher ð SR: Fanning, along with fellow senior
and all-star Kelly Theis, formed one of the Western Sullivan Leagueâs
ãShe and Kelly worked very well together,ä J-Y coach Mike Ellmauer
said of Fanning. ãDefensively, nobody seemed to want to run on her and
when they did, she threw them out. She threw out at least 10 runners
At the plate, Fanning had a .357 batting average and knocked in 17
runs. She also stole 10 bases.
ãShe had a good year,ä said Ellmauer.
The coach added that he will miss Fanning, who played on the varsity
team for four years. Fanning was an outfielder as a freshman and
sophomore and moved behind the plate for the past two seasons.
Kelly Theis ð FT ð pitcher ð SR: When Theis wasnât dazzling
opposing hitters, she was ruining the earned run averages of her fellow
At the plate, Theis finished the year with a .547 average and 25 RBI.
She also swiped 22 bases.
ãKelly batted fourth in the lineup and we had some good plate setters
hitting ahead of her,ä Ellmauer stated. ãWhen they got on base, she
knocked them home.ä
On the mound, she posted an 8ö3 record, struck out 57 batters and
issued 23 walks.
ãShe threw hard and tried to change up the hitters as well,ä Ellmauer
noted. ãKelly was a great pitcher and she really could play any
position. Iâm really going to miss her next season.ä
Danielle Austin ð FT ð pitcher/shortstop ð JR: ãDanielle was
unbelievable this season,ä Roscoe coach Pete DeVantier said. ãShe is
just an outstanding pitcher.ä
Austin finished the year with a 7ö3 mark. In WSL competition, she
recorded six wins and just two losses.
At the plate, Austin hit .420 for the Lady Blue Devils.
DeVantier praised Austin, as well as fellow all-stars Becky Evans and
Mary Kate Johnston, for being a team leader. And he is pleased that
Austin was only a junior this season.
ãI expect her to pitch very well again next year,ä he commented.
Becky Evans ð HM ð pitcher/shortstop ð SR: Evans led the Roscoe
offense this season with a .480 batting average.
She also posted a 5ö4 mark on the mound.
And when Evans wasnât getting a key hit to bring home a teammate or
keeping opposing hitters off balance, she was playing the shortstop
position very well.
ãBecky was a really outstanding shortstop for us,ä Pete DeVantier
commented. ãSheâs a player you can put anywhere on the field. No
matter where she is, she will make plays.ä
Mary Kate Johnston ð FT ð catcher ð SR: Coach DeVantier noted that
Johnston was ãthe spark of the team.ä
While Johnston hit .350, she also made an impact behind the plate.
ãShe must have thrown out at least 10 runners trying to steal,ä
DeVantier said. ãPart of the game is stealing and she knew that and
was able to get a lot of those runners who were attempting to steal a
Rachel Altbach ð HM ð first base ð SR: From her number two spot in
the batting order, Altbach, who played on the varsity team for three
seasons, hit .310, scored 23 runs and pilfered a dozen bases.
Altbach was just as steady in the field, playing first base for the
Lady Bears. She had a team-high 120 putouts and squadâs best fielding
ãIâll miss both Rachel and our other senior Mia Kawauchi,ä T-V coach
Mary Feusner said. ãRachel was a real team player and a hard worker.
She had a lot of leadership skills.ä
Mia Kawauchi ð HM ð pitcher/outfielder ð SR: When she wasnât
pitching, Kawauchi was in the Lady Bear outfield.
ãShe is such a good player that we wanted her in the lineup when she
wasnât on the mound,ä Feusner commented. ãWe needed her in the game
because she has a good stick and knows how to run the bases. Sheâs a
Kawauchi batted .321 and knocked in 12 runs. She also stole seven bases
and had a .905 fielding percentage.
On the mound, Kawauchi posted a 4ö1 record.
ãShe did a very nice job pitching for us,ä Feusner said.
Heidi Manell ð FT ð pitcher/designated player ð SO: Despite hitting
fifth or sixth in the Lady Bear lineup, Manell managed to register a
team-best 63 at-bats. And she made the most of those trips to the
Manell had a .349 batting average, 15 RBI and scored 25 runs. She also
swiped eight bases and had five extra-base hits this season.
ãWhen she wasnât pitching, we used her as the designated player to
give her those extra batting opportunities,ä Feusner said. ãShe had
pretty good offensive statistics.ä
Manell also excelled on the mound, where she posted a 7ö2 record.
ãSheâs pitching year-round and that [experience] showed this season,ä
Feusner said. ãShe had a great year and is only going to get better.ä
Jessica Miller ð FT ð shortstop ð JR: It should come as little
surprise that Miller was chosen by her teammates and Lady Bear coaches
as the teamâs co-MVP this season. Miller was chosen for that honor
along with fellow junior ÷ and fellow WSL first-team all star ÷ Megan
Miller hit a team-best .517 on the season and knocked in 26 runs, also
most on the team. Miller scored 30 runs and stole 12 bases.
ãJessica batted cleanup or third or fifth, always in the heart of the
lineup,ä said Feusner. ãShe sprayed the ball to all fields. She was
able to put the ball where she wanted to.ä
Megan Sheeley ð FT ð second base ð JR: With fellow team co-MVP
Jessica Miller, Sheeley formed a solid defensive pairing in the middle
of the infield.
Sheeley finished the season with a sparkling .941 fielding percentage,
meaning that the vast majority of line drives and ground balls hit her
way resulted in outs.
ãThatâs the kind of defense a team needs from a middle infielder,ä
Feusner said. ãMegan also had a good year at the plate, thereâs no
doubt about that.ä
Sheeley hit .435 and had 20 RBI. She also recorded a team-best eight
extra-base hits, scored 29 runs and stole 11 bases.
ãI am loving that fact that we will see Megan and her co-MVP Jessica
Miller back next year,ä Feusner noted.