VALLEY – Local players made a clean sweep of the major Northern Tier League baseball awards in recent All-star balloting by league coaches.
NTL Division II champion Sayre picked up two of the three with Quinn Hanafin being named Player of the Year and Brayden Horton bringing the Rookie of the Year nod back to the Valley.
Athens’ Keegan Rude was named the Pitcher of the Year, and Canton’s Bob Rockwell and Jay Perry got the Coaching Staff of the Year laurels.
Hanafin was the lynchpin for the Redskins’ offense. He hit .508, and when you add his 25 walks, had an on base percentage of .663 and a slugging average of .746. His OPS of 1.409 was the team’s best. He had six doubles, a triple, two home runs, 24 RBIs and 32 runs scored. He also had a solid .887 fielding percentage in 71 chances and struck out 21 in 24 innings on the mound.
Horton had eight doubles and three triples on the way to a .323 batting average with 23 RBIs and 17 runs. With an on base average of .452 and slugging average of .538, his OPS was an impressive .991. He also had a fielding percentage of .976 on 126 chances.
With what Rude did from the mound it’s no wonder he was deemed the league’s best. In 30 1/3 innings, Rude allowed just 18 hits and 13 walks. That amounted to just one earned run for an ERA of .232 and a stellar WHIP of 1.022. He also played solid defense, with just one error in 40 chances for a fielding percentage of .975.
In addition to Hanafin, Sayre’s first-team All-star contingent includes Zach Moore, who had a .347 batting average with eight doubles, eight RBIs and 18 runs. With 11 walks, his on base percentage was .453. Add a slugging percentage of .458 and his OPS was .911. Moore was also second on the team in innings pitched and allowed 11 earned runs for an ERA of 2.375. He also handled 33 of 37 chances for a fielding percentage of .892.
In addition to Rude, Athens had two other first-team All-stars in Nate Kennedy and Ethan Witherow.
Kennedy had a .384 batting average, an on base percentage of .437 and a slugging percentage of .507, for an OPS of .918. He had six doubles, a home run, 21 RBIs — that happens when you hit .417 with runners in scoring position — and 24 runs. He also had 15 innings pitched, allowing two earned runs for an ERA of .933.
Witherow’s .419 batting average included seven doubles and a triple, and led to 11 RBIs and 27 runs scored. With a .550 on base percentage and a slugging average of .565, Witherow’s OPS ballooned to 1.115. Witherow only got 10 1/3 innings on the mound and posted a 1.355 ERA.
Rounding out the first team are Wellsboro’s Billy Lechler, Cam Tenis and Carsin Davis; North Penn/Mansfield’s Dylan Williamson; Cowanesque Valley’s Christian Kemp; Troy’s Tyler Williams; Canton’s Ben Knapp; Wyalusing’s Zach Bruyn; Towanda’s Devin Dunn; Northeast Bradford’s Ian Wilber; and Williamson’s Brock Sackett.
In addition to Horton, one other Valley player — Athens’ Joe Parshall — made the second team.
Parshall had eight doubles, two home runs, 21 RBIs and 28 runs on the year with a .333 batting average. Parshall posted 15 strikeouts in 10 2/3 innings on the hill and had a .956 fielding percentage on 136 chances.
The remainder of the second team included Brion Smith and Gage Martin of North Penn/Mansfield; Owen Fitzwater and Seth Huyler of Cowanesque Valley; Tanner Kunkle and Brett Crispell of Towanda; Jacob Carr and Shane Fuhrey of Wyalusing; Zach Rowland of Wellsboro; Michael Smithers, Ashton Huck and Connor Route of Canton.