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By Mike Copper, Tom Reisenweber, Jeff Kirik Erie Times-News staff bloggers
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Winter Warm-up – Maplewood

Maplewood Tigers
Baseball
Coach (season, record): Robert Finkbeiner (3rd season, 11-20)
2012 overall record: 7-10
2012 region record (place): 4-4 (third)
2012 playoff results: Did not qualify for the District 10 playoffs.
Top players lost: Eric Willey, Connor Maloney, Joel Mowris
Top returning players: Nate Klingler, Josh Kohnen, Isaiah Stearns, Carl Douglas, Alex Reagle, Stephen Reed, Henry Coyle, Noah Marvin, Zach Eimer
Assistant coaches: Matt Crocker, John Wiley
Outlook: Maplewood has improved since Robert Finkbeiner took over the program in 2011. The Tigers will look to keep that momentum going with a young team this spring. Maplewood has only three seniors on the roster and will have to replace Eric Willey, Connor Maloney and Joel Mowris. Willey and Maloney graduated and Mowris moved to Cochranton. The Tigers have a strong group back, including Nate Klingler, Josh Kohnen, Isaiah Stearns, Carl Douglas, Alex Reagle, Stephen Reed, Henry Coyle, Noah Marvin and Zach Eimer. Klingler was voted to the all-region second team at pitcher last year and will lead the pitching staff this season. Klingler will step behind the plate to catch when not on the mound. Kohnen, Coyle and Eimer will man the outfield and Stearns, Douglas and Marvin will anchor the infield. Freshman Dalton Fosburg leads a group of new players that could make an impact right away. Fosburg could start at second base, while Kyle Nuhfer, Wyatt Wright, Logan Dempsey, Ricky Bienio, Kyle Weldon and Caleb McAdams could help out right away. Reagle, Reed, Eimer, Fosburg, Nuhfer and Joel Robison could all pitch for Maplewood this season. The Tigers have a young team but they have some experience to lean on. Maplewood is in a tough region but developing the program and winning games could turn into a playoff spot down the line.

Schedule
March
29 at Eisenhower 4
April
4 Meadville 4
6 at West Middlesex 1
9 Saegertown* 4
15 at Cambridge Springs* 4
17 Cochranton* 4
22 Union City* 4
24 at Saegertown* 4
29 at Meadville 3:30
May
1 Eisenhower 4
2 at Youngsville 4
3 East 4
7 Cambridge Springs* 4
9 at Cochranton* 4
14 at Union City* 4
*Region 3 games

Softball
Coach (season): Hannah Parker (1st season)
2012 overall record: 12-6
2012 region record (place): 11-5 (third)
2012 playoff results: Lost to Iroquois 10-0 in the District 10 Class AA quarterfinals.
Top players lost: Emma Parker, Mary Fultz
Top returning players: Kendra Turner, Taylor Smith, Emily Merritt, Laura Kirk, Abby Sansom, Maddy Nicols, Caitlyn Hartman
Assistant coaches: Beth Proper, Mark Parker, Phil Smith
Outlook: Maplewood will look to a new coach this season in Hannah Parker. She takes over a program that won 12 games last year but ran into a tough opponent in the playoffs. The Tigers will have to replace Emma Parker and Mary Fultz but they have almost everyone else back. Kendra Turner, Taylor Smith, Emily Merritt, Laura Kirk, Abby Sansom, Maddy Nicols and Caitlyn Hartman are back this spring to lead an experienced Maplewood team. Hartman was voted to the all-region first team at designated player last year and Smith is a first-team pitcher. Merritt was voted to the second team at catcher and Turner is a second-team first baseman. Turner, Sansom and Kirk will lead the infield, while Merritt along with underclassmen Laurel Smith, Molly Bernoski, Chelsea Hasbrouck and Alyssa Proper taking over in the outfield. Smith will pitch and play an important role for the Tigers this season. Brianna Proudfoot and Ruth Fultz are also new players that could contribute this season. Maplewood has plenty of experience, leadership and work ethic but low numbers could be a problem. Maplewood is in an interesting region with several playoff contenders and with how competitive Class AA has become, the Tigers will need a big performance this season to return to the postseason.

Schedule
March
29 at Eisenhower 4
April
4 Meadville 4
6 at West Middlesex 1
8 North East 4
9 Saegertown* 4
15 at Cambridge Springs* 4
17 Cochranton* 4
22 Union City* 4
24 at Saegertown* 4
29 at Meadville 4:30
May
1 Eisenhower 4
2 at Youngsville 4
7 Cambridge Springs* 4
9 at Cochranton* 4
14 at Union City* 4
*Region 3 games

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Baseball, Softball, Winter Warm-up

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