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Democrat Photo by Rob Potter

Mia Kawauchi of Tri-Valley

T-V Dominates All-Star List

By Rob Potter
SULLIVAN COUNTY — July 14, 2000 – Western Sullivan League softball champion Tri-Valley was well-represented when it came time for coaches to pick an all-star team. Five Lady Bears — more than any other team — were selected.
The players, position and class are listed, along with first team (FT) and honorable mention (HM) honors.
We conclude our series on Tuesday with a look at the Narrowsburg and Livingston Manor all-stars.

Rachel Altbach • HM • first base • 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 squad’s best fielding percentage (.954).
“I’ll miss both Rachel and our other senior Mia Kawauchi,” T-V coach Mary Feusner said. “Rachel was a real team player and a hard worker. She had a lot of leadership skills.”
Mia Kawauchi • HM • pitcher/outfielder • SR: When she wasn’t pitching, Kawauchi was in the Lady Bear outfield.
“She is such a good player that we wanted her in the lineup when she wasn’t on the mound,” Feusner commented. “We needed her in the game because she has a good stick and knows how to run the bases. She’s a versatile player.”
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 4–1 record.
“She did a very nice job pitching for us,” Feusner said.
Heidi Manell • FT • pitcher/designated player • 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 plate.
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.
“When she wasn’t pitching, we used her as the designated player to give her those extra batting opportunities,” Feusner said. “She had pretty good offensive statistics.”
Manell also excelled on the mound, where she posted a 7–2 record.
“She’s pitching year-round and that [experience] showed this season,” Feusner said. “She had a great year and is only going to get better.”
Jessica Miller • FT • shortstop • JR: It should come as little surprise that Miller was chosen by her teammates and Lady Bear coaches as the team’s co-MVP this season. Miller was chosen for that honor along with fellow junior — and fellow WSL first-team all star — Megan Sheeley.
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.
“Jessica batted cleanup or third or fifth, always in the heart of the lineup,” said Feusner. “She sprayed the ball to all fields. She was able to put the ball where she wanted to.”
Megan Sheeley • FT • second base • 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.
“That’s the kind of defense a team needs from a middle infielder,” Feusner said. “Megan also had a good year at the plate, there’s no doubt about that.”
Sheeley hit .435 and had 20 RBI. She also recorded a team-best eight extra-base hits, scored 29 runs and stole 11 bases.
“I am loving that fact that we will see Megan and her co-MVP Jessica Miller back next year,” Feusner noted.

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