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FALLSBURG’S KYLA WEIGAND pours a bucket of water over Coach Mike Weiner to celebrate the Lady Comets’ victory over The Family School last month in a non-league softball game.

Softball 2004: A Look Back

By Rob Potter
June 29, 2004 – Overall record: 1-17
League record: 0-9 OCIAA Division V
Top Players: Frances Melendez, Karen Perrello and Toni Wilkerson were presented with the top team awards at the recent Fallsburg athletic banquet.
Melendez, a junior who played in the outfield and also spent some time as the team’s catcher, was named the Lady Comets’ Most Improved Player for the 2004 season.
“She really came through for us with a lot of big hits,” Coach Mike Weiner said.
Perrello, a senior, was the recipient of the Sportsmanship Award.
“This girl was an iron horse,” Weiner said. “She played with a lot of heart and was one of the toughest players to get out of a game. She’s old school.”
Wilkerson, a junior, was honored as the team’s Most Valuable Player.
“She made two catches this season that were absolutely amazing,” Weiner commented. “One was a running shoestring catch where she tumbled over in a summersault. She got up and still had the ball in her glove.”
Weiner also praised the efforts of sophomore third baseman Kyla Weigand.
“She had a good hitting streak going over the last few games of the season,” he said. “She has a tremendous future.”
Season Highlight: “The game where we beat The Family School 9 to 8,” Weiner said. “It was a come-from-behind win for us.”
Weiner added that despite winning only one game this spring, the Lady Comets had “a lot of games where we played really well.”
“We played Eldred tough in two games,” he commented. “In games against Monticello and Livingston Manor we played well for half the game. And we played Tri-Valley tough the second and third times.”
Other: To promote sportsmanship, Weiner instituted a policy of shaking hands with the players and coaches from the opposing team before the contest in addition to after the game. He said he was happy with the way the Lady Comets conducted themselves this season.
“Sportsmanship builds character,” he explained.
Weiner said that he will really miss the five seniors who graduated earlier this month. Those players are Rebecca Haber, Sarah Halprin, Michelle Orrego, Perrello and Shannon Weigand.
“I have three daughters and those five young ladies are excellent role models for my daughters,” Weiner said. “I’ve had a great run with those players. They were all on my junior varsity team three years ago when we won five games, which was the most a Fallsburg JV softball team had won in several seasons.”
With some sadness, Weiner noted that this season marked the end of his scholastic coaching career. He has decided to step down in order to spend more time with his family.
Over the past two decades, he recorded a total of 200 victories while guiding a number of Fallsburg Central School teams, including JV baseball, JV and Varsity softball, tennis and Modified, JV and Varsity girls’ basketball.
Weiner noted that he coached many great players over the years. Among them were Paul Exner, Albert White and Mike Spechardt, an outstanding baseball player who was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals.
However, Weiner said he will keep his coaching credentials and the required first aid training up to date just in case a Fallsburg team needs a coach on an interim basis in the future.

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