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Westmoreland notebook: Busy signing day expected

Bill Beckner Jr.
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Some of the WPIAL’s top Division I college recruits from the area will make their commitments official by signing national letters of intent.

The initial signing period for senior athletes in all sports except football begins Wednesday, and Westmoreland County will be well represented.

Those expected to sign Wednesday or later include:

Hempfield — Mackenna Orie (DePaul, track and field) and Gavin Mayo (North Carolina, swimming); Franklin Regional — Colton Camacho (Pitt, wrestling), Zach McCann (American, wrestling), Palmer Jackson (Notre Dame, golf) and Cali Konek (Charlotte, basketball); Yough — Jarrett Bach (Pitt, baseball); Norwin — Emily Brozeski (Duquesne, track), Jessica Kolesar (Cornell, track) and Maddy Genicola (Duquesne, soccer); Belle Vernon — Scott Joll (West Virginia, wrestling) and Josh Hoffman (Youngstown State, baseball); Latrobe — Reed Fenton (Lehigh, basketball) and Brady Pevarnik (Penn State, golf); Penn-Trafford — Emma Armstrong (Hartford, softball), Nick Coy (Virginia, wrestling), Kiley Dugan (Valparaiso, soccer), Paige Kalik (Akron, diving) and Griffin Martin (New Jersey Institue of Technology, lacrosse); Kiski Area — Cam Connor (Penn, wrestling), Darren Miller (Bucknell, wrestling) and Keaghan Schafer (William & Mary, gymnastics); and Greensburg Central Catholic — Abby Zambruno (St. Francis (Pa.), golf).

Division II athletes also can begin to sign Wednesday.

Electing to receive

Ligonier Valley big-play wide receiver Aaron Tutino moved into the No. 2 spot on the state’s all-time receiving yards list.

Tutino, who has the Pennsylvania record for receiving touchdowns (59), has 199 career catches for 4,025 yards. The senior will help lead the Rams (12-0) into the District 6 2A championship Friday night against Richland (12-0) at Altoona’s Mansion Park Stadium.

Kevin Gulyas of Allentown Central (2008-11) is the career yards leader with 4,201.

Tutino has 59 receptions for 1,268 yards and 19 scores this season. He sits fifth all-time in career receptions.

Richland appears to have a solid pass rush and secondary. The Rams have 28 sacks and 12 interceptions, including three picks by senior cornerback Jordan Kocsis.

Senior linebacker Zack Vogelsberger has 81 tackles and eight sacks.

Richland also has a big-play receiver in junior Caleb Burke, who has 65 catches for 1,129 yards and 15 touchdowns. The team has four receivers with 25 or more receptions.

Senior quarterback Joe Hauser has thrown for 2,702 yards and 33 TDs. Compare that to Ligonier Valley senior John Caldwell, who has 2,489 yards and 35 scores, and this has the makings of a shootout.

All-conference football

Numerous Westmoreland football players made the All-Big 5/6 Conference football teams.

Norwin seniors Gianni Rizzo (WR) and Jayvon Thrift (DB) were named to the Class 6A first team.

Class 5A Big East first team selections included: junior Derek Sutherland (OT), junior Caleb Lisbon (RB), senior Keaton Hier (K), junior Dylan Schmidt (DE), junior Josh Cheplick (DT), senior Niko Rosso (LB), and senior Dimitri George (DB) of Penn-Trafford; senior Zakharee Williams (multi-purpose), senior Trent Holler (DE), and senior Nathan Clair (K) of Latrobe; and senior Adam Rudzinski (LB) and senior Nick Leopold (DB) of Franklin Regional.

Recruiting 

Greensburg Central Catholic junior basketball player Melina Maietta attended the John Lucas Top 160 Camp in Houston. The transfer from Norwin is getting college attention from several schools, including Florida Atlantic, Florida Gulf Coast, St. Joseph and Coastal Carolina.

She also attended Prospect Nations, another national showcase.

• Penn-Trafford senior Hunter DeStefano will continue his baseball career at Cal (Pa.). He is a third baseman and pitcher.

Winter practice

Official practice for WPIAL basketball, wrestling, swimming, gymnastics and rifle opens Friday.

Bill Beckner is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Bill at [email protected] or via Twitter @BillBeckner.

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