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    Mayfield enters the 2024 season eager to put behind them last year’s one-win season.

    The Wildcats return six starters and had an influx of talented freshmen that solidified their lineup.

    “The 2024 season should be more successful than last year as we have a very strong incoming freshman class that will complement the talents of our returning players,” said Mayfield coach Megan Kuhlman. “Some position changes of returning players will be necessary to ensure our highest opportunity for success.”

    Early returns indicate the Wildcats are trending up this spring.

    “After competing in our first scrimmage it is evident that the incoming freshmen and returning players complement each other’s strengths and are undoubtedly will be able to compete with opponents this upcoming season,” Kuhlman said. “Our goal is to be more competitive overall in our conference and non-conference play and continue to grow the foundation we set during our 2022 season.”

    Mayfield’s success hinges on its ability to produce runs and play solid defense behind its pitching staff.

    “Our biggest challenge this spring will be supporting our pitching staff by not only getting ahead offensively with runs scored but also reducing their earned run averages with our defense,” Kuhlman said. “Returning pitchers Ava Migliorini and Kameron Sills both had an earned run average of over eight runs per game last year which will be a major factor we need to reduce to be successful this upcoming season.”

    Mayfield’s biggest run producer is senior Angeleah Saltenis, who will DH.

    Last spring, the Ursuline College commitment batted .409 with three home runs.

    “Angeleah Saltenis will be a key leader in our program offensively as well as off the field as a role model to our young defense,” Kuhlman said. “She has committed to Ursuline College where she will continue her academic and softball career next year.”

    Mayfield’s only other senior starter is right-fielder Emily Daedlow.

    Juniors Emma Melito will catch, Elena Baghdasaryan will play first, and Nicole Paradise will play left field. Sophomore Sarah Piazza is in right, and freshmen Lilly Pinzone, Ella Garrett, and Ella Mikesell will play second, shortstop, and third, respectively.

    Melito hit .365 last spring.

    Seniors Kaylee Tsvedos and Gabby Moore, sophomore Kameron Sills, and freshmen Emma Arth and Ella Gordon will provide depth.

    Tsvdeos and Moore are utility players while Sills, Arth, and Gordon will pitch and play a utility role in the field.

    “Incoming freshman Lilly Pinzone, Ella Garrett, and Ella Mikesell will be key components defensively, and offensively to create a more cohesive lineup. We are excited to see how they increase our competitiveness this upcoming season,” Kuhlman said. “In addition, we welcome senior Gabby Moore who is a well-rounded multisport athlete that will begin her first year on the diamond with the Wildcats.”

    Mayfield is two years removed from a 15-win season, and Kuhlman believes her squad’s resilience could lead the Wildcats to a successful season this spring.

    “The resilience of our players is our biggest strength this upcoming season,” she said. “Many of the upperclassmen in our program were on the team during our very successful run in the 2022 season, and then again during our unsuccessful 2023 season. The remarkable resilience they bring to this team will help our young team develop successful attributes to continued success for the Mayfield softball program in years to come.”

    To be successful, Mayfield’s players have to know their roles, come together as a team to support each other and play fundamental softball.

    “In order to harbor success as a program, our players need to work together to support one another on and off the field,” Kuhlman said. “Our young pitching staff needs to increase their endurance while reducing their earned run average. In addition, our team needs to support them by increasing the number of runs scored early in the game to give them confidence, as well as to support them defensively to reduce runs allowed. We hope to learn from not only our successes, but also our failures, and in doing so we will continue to create a positive culture for the Mayfield fastpitch program.”

     

    Steve Hare
    Steve Harehttps://www.ohiovarsity.com
    The creator and publisher of OhioVarsity.com, Hare has covered high school sports in Northeast Ohio since 1997. He began as a correspondent for the Lake County News Herald, where he contributed until 2011, primarily covering high school football and wrestling. In 1999, Hare began writing for IrishIllustrated.com, a member of the Scout.com network of high school and college sports web sites. He focuses on covering Notre Dame football recruiting. OhioVarsity.com was created in 2004 and was a member of the Rivals.com network until 2012. The site's original purpose was to cover Ohio high school football and recruiting news but since has grown to cover all sports and to provide sports information services to high school athletic programs and individual teams. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.
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