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W&J favored to win PAC baseball title

The Washington & Jefferson baseball team picked up eight of nine first-place votes and was the Presidents’ Athletic Conference coaches’ pick to win the conference.

The Presidents were 28-16-1 overall and 16-2 in the conference in 2018, made their 10th consecutive trip to the conference tournament and finished second to Thomas More. They finished with 80 points in the poll.

Thiel was picked second in the poll with 68 points. Westminster was selected third with 58 points and Grove City, the other team to earn a first-place vote, was picked fourth with 53 points. Saint Vincent was picked fifth with 41 points, followed by Waynesburg (36), Bethany (29), Geneva (22) and Chatham (18).

W&J will be led by four seniors — outfielder Dante Dalesandro (Mt. Lebanon), shortstop Spencer Howell, pitcher Clay Martin (Canon-McMillan) and infielder Socha Mullen — and junior pitcher Ben Marsico (North Allegheny).

Mullen led the Presidents with a .375 batting average and Howell batted .338. Martin was 1-0 with an earned run average of 0.98 and Marsico was 5-3 with a 1.31 ERA.

Here are the WPIAL players listed on a watch list:

Bethany: senior pitcher Tyler Frazee (Uniontown) and senior pitcher Neil Woods (North Allegheny)

Chatham: sophomore pitcher Austin Andonisio (Central Catholic), freshman catcher Caleb Lehman (Gateway), senior second baseman Paul Nussbaum (Pine-Richland) and junior outfielder Jon Scarsella (Bethel Park)

Saint Vincent: senior first baseman Bobby Finn (Peters Township), junior pitcher Jimmy Malone (Connellsville) and senior outfielder Matt Morrone (Central Catholic)

Thiel: senior outfielder Nick Fowkes (Ringgold) and junior catcher Andrew Geisey (Penn-Trafford)

Waynesburg: senior outfielder Tyler Godwin (South Fayette), junior pitcher Mason Miller (Bethel Park) and senior infielder Tyler Reis (Penn Hills)

Westminster: senior catcher Hunter Alexander (Blackhawk), senior pitcher Dante Parente (Blackhawk) and senior pitcher Cory Pullen (North Allegheny).