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By Mike Copper, Tom Reisenweber, Jeff Kirik Erie Times-News staff bloggers
The Varsity blog is the 2013 winner of an international EPPY award for best sports blog. EPPYs are awarded to media-affiliated websites by Editor & Publisher, an industry trade publication. Varsity is primarily maintained by Times-News sports writers Mike Copper and Tom Reisenweber and sports editor Jeff Kirik.   Read more about this blog.
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Winter Warm-up – Eisenhower

Eisenhower Knights
Coach (season, record): Jon Vincent (3rd season, 5-27)
2011 overall record: 1-14
2011 region record (place): 0-6 (fourth)
2011 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 playoffs.
Top players lost: None
Top returning players: Aaron Jackson, Joe Rutsky, Trevor Spicer
Assistant coach: Ernie Carlson
Outlook: Eisenhower went through a tough 2011 season with plenty of youth. The Knights lost only one senior to graduation and could use the growing pains of last spring to win games this season. Aaron Jackson, Joe Rutsky and Trevor Spicer are back, while freshman Kyle Hunt could be an impact player. Jackson will contribute at third base and on the mound, while Rutsky is an outfielder and Spicer is a shortstop and a pitcher. Eisenhower has some depth at pitching this season and coach Vincent is expecting the Knights to be competitive. With 12 players battling for the starting positions, the early competition in camp could lead to positive results this season.

28 Corry 4
2 Northwestern 4
4 at Fairview 4
9 Seneca 4
11 at North East 4
13 Iroquois* 4
16 at Titusville 4
20 at Mercyhurst Prep* 4
23 Youngsville* 4
25 at Northwestern 4
27 Fairview 4
30 at Seneca 4
2 North East 4
7 at Iroquois* 4
9 Titusville 4
14 Mercyhurst Prep* 4
16 at Youngsville* 4
*Region games

Coach (season, record): R.J. Williams (7th season, 30-62)
2011 overall record: 3-15
2011 region record (place): 2-15 (ninth)
2011 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 playoffs.
Top players lost: Lyndsey Arford, Lauren Sherry, Taylor Ward
Top returning players: Jessica Byrd, Kelsey Repke, Brooke Stanton
Assistant coach: Jessica Shoemaker
Outlook: Eisenhower will be pretty young this season with the graduation of Lyndsey Arford, Lauren Sherry and Taylor Ward. The Knights will need to find a new pitcher with Ward gone, but freshman Haylie Birt could fill that role. Jessica Byrd (shortstop), Kelsey Repke (outfield) and Brooke Stanton (catcher) return this season, while freshmen Dakota Williams and Kristen Williams could be impact players at several positions. Coach Williams is hoping the Knights gain valuable experience and can continue to build the program.

27 at Youngsville* 4
29 Villa Maria* 4
3 at Fairview* 4
5 Titusville 4
10 North East* 4
12 at Girard* 4
14 General McLane* 11 a.m.
17 at Iroquois* 4
19 Seneca* 4
21 at Northwestern* 4
24 Youngsville* 4
26 at Villa Maria* 4
28 Fairview* 11 a.m.
1 at North East* 4
3 Girard* 4
8 at General McLane* 4
10 at Iroquois* 4
15 at Seneca* 4
17 Northwestern* 4
*Region games

– Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Baseball, Softball, Winter Warm-up

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