Niagara Gazette — Another year of high school baseball is in the books, and the 2013 season could go down as a promising one for local schools.
While we had no sectional champions, Grand Island, Lewiston-Porter, Niagara Falls, Niagara-Wheatfield, Starpoint and Wilson did produce eight postseason wins. And with eight of the 13 slots on this year's All-Area team going to underclassmen, it wouldn't be wrong to be excited about the future of high school baseball in Niagara County.
After contacting local coaches and multiple media members, we've selected three pitchers and 10 position players to honor on our 2013 All-Area team. Making selections is a difficult process, so we've also listed honorable mentions of deserving candidates. All stats were provided by coaches.
Joe Colosi, Niagara Falls
• STATS: 3-2, 32 IP, 53 K, 13 BB, 24 H, 15 R, 10 ER, 2.19 ERA
• SKINNY: Senior stepped in as ace following the graduation of last year's Player of the Year, Andrew DeWitt. ... Struck out 15 in a two-hitter of North Tonawanda on May 13. ... Knocked in seven and scored six runs while batting .273 at the plate.
Quinn Corrao, Grand Island
• STATS: 5-0, 34 IP, 21 K, 9 BB, 19 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 0.82 ERA
• SKINNY: Junior led the way for the defending Section VI Class A champs, throwing four complete games. ... Three-hit defending NFL champ Niagara Falls on April 22, striking out six. ... Everyday player chipped in at the plate, notching five RBIs and five runs scored.
Austin Speaker, Starpoint
• STATS: 6-2, 41.1 IP, 54 K, 7 BB, 43 H, 23 R, 18 ER, 3.05 ERA
• SKINNY: Senior helped a talented Spartan squad to the No. 4 seed in Class A and a berth in the semifinals. ... Struck out seven in a complete game and went 5 for 5 with six RBIs and three runs scored in a win over Iroqouis on May 8. ... Speedster also led off, hitting .443 with 12 steals.
Mike Mokhiber, Lew-Port
Brendan Gilewski, Nia.-Wheatfield
Doug Litwinski, Nia.-Wheatfield
Bailey Cadwallader, Nia.-Wheatfield
• STATS: 20 H, 2 2B, 19 SB, 9 RBI
• SKINNY: Junior second baseman led the NFL in stolen bases. ... Coach Jim Hagerty had high praise, saying, "I've never had a kid with that kind of speed and instinct on the base paths." ... Stole three bases against Lockport (April 25) and four against Kenmore East (April 15).
Mike Colosi, Niagara Falls
• STATS: 15 R, 24 H, 5 2B, 2 3B, 4 SB, 3 BB, 16 RBI, .500 AVG
• SKINNY: Junior shortstop led the NFL in hits and tied in average. ... Also pitched, including a start in a sectional win over West Seneca West. ... Scored four runs in a big win over NFL rival Grand Island on May 8.
Joe D'Angelo, Niagara Falls
• STATS: 13 R, 19 H, 2 2B, 2 3B, 9 SB, 6 BB, 11 RBI, .413 AVG
• SKINNY: Third baseman is one of three Niagara Falls junior infielders on this year's team. ... Had two hits and four RBIs in the Wolverines' May 15 win over Lew-Port, which clinched a share of second place in the NFL. ... Was a perfect 9-0 on stolen base attempts.
Mark McKenna, Grand Island
• STATS: 17 R, 19 H, 4 2B, 1 3B, 8 SB, 4 BB, 11 RBI, .404 AVG
• SKINNY: Sophomore center fielder tied for NFL lead in runs scored. ... Went 4 for 6 with two triples and four RBIs in a non-league sectional tuneup against Amherst on May 16. ... Made a game-saving, home run-robbing catch with two outs in the bottom of the seventh in a May 1 win over Kenmore West.
Greg Nicolia, Grand Island
• STATS: 12 R, 17 H, 2 2Bs, 7 SB, 9 BB, 12 RBI, .395 AVG
• SKINNY: Junior shortstop led the second-place Vikings in RBIs, was second in steals and hits and third in walks. ... Had three RBIs against Lockport on April 17, but his biggest game was a three-hit, four-run, two-RBI performance against Kenmore East on May 13.
Alex O'Donnell, Starpoint
• STATS: 22 R, 25 H, 4 2B, 1 3B, 5 SB, 12 BB, 22 RBI, .439 AVG
• SKINNY: Junior shortstop named first team All-Western New York. ... Set Starpoint career record for doubles when he hit his 14th in May. ... Also contributed from the mound, striking out 21 in 19.1 innings for a 1.45 ERA with two wins and two saves.
Mike Parisi, Nia.-Wheatfield
• STATS: 19 H, 2 2B, 4 3B, 1 HR, 16 RBI
• SKINNY: Slugging senior third baseman led the NFL in slugging through eight games. ... Went 3 for 3 with a double against league champ Lockport on April 25. ... Also played on N-W's sectional champion hockey team.
Andrew Rankie, Starpoint
• STATS: 16 R, 18 H, 4 2B, 4 SB, 8 BB, 16 RBI, .360 AVG
• SKINNY: Senior first baseman also plays football and basketball for the Spartans. ... Went 4 for 4 with three runs and four RBIs in a win against Iroquois on April 22. ... Had five multiple-RBI games, as well as five game with multiple runs scored.
Mike Thompson, Wilson
• STATS: 4 2B, 4 3B, 2 HR, 19 RBI, .385 AVG
• SKINNY: Powerful senior shortstop named first team All-Niagara-Orleans league. ... Earned a three-inning save in a sectional upset of then-undefeated City Honors when he struck out the No. 4 and 5 hitters before inducing an inning-ending groundout after entering with the bases loaded in a three-run game.
Dave Yarger, Niagara Falls
• STATS: 17 R, 19 H, 3 2B, 2 3B, 3 SB, 10 BB, 9 RBI, .442 AVG
• SKINNY: Junior second baseman tied McKenna for the league lead in runs and tied for fifth in walks. ... Scored multiple runs seven times and had six multi-hit games in 14 league games. ... Committed only three errors in 37 fielding opportunities.
John Holody, Grand Island
Nick Soos, Grand Island
Chris Foote, Grand Island
Ben Carella, Lew-Port
Joe Scirto, Lew-Port
Jordan Willard, Lew-Port
Jon Liberti, Nia.-Wheatfield
Chris Cribbs, Starpoint
Jimmy Janezco, Starpoint
Taylor Thilk, Wilson