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2015 Westlake Wildcats Preview

Posted Thursday, March 26, 2015 by Vincent Mercogliano

Team preview: Westlake

26 March 2015, 4:54 pm by in Team preview - No Comments

The 2015 season was one to build on for Westlake, which will be looking to make some more headway in what is looking like an increasingly crowded field in Class B. The Wildcats finished the regular season above .500 and won their league, going onto make it out of the first round for the first time in at least a couple of years. The next step for the program will be sustaining that momentum and having another solid year in 2015. A few key players were lost to graduation—most notably catcher Anthony Rotunno—but coach Michael Paquette does return a handful of experienced guys. Despite losing his catcher, he believes that the Wildcats will be strong up the middle with a few reliable arms. The tide certainly seems to be changing for the better at Westlake.

Here are more of Paquette’s thoughts heading into the season:

How many years have you been coaching at your current school? I have been coaching for nine years at Westlake. This is my seventh year as head varsity coach.

How did your team fare last season? 12-10, league champions, lost to North Salem in quarterfinals.

Who are your top returning players? Michael Poggioreale, Jason Kalle, Matthew Rubin, Matthew Latino.

Who are the top players that you lost to graduation? Anthony Rotunno, Michael Sanchez, Aiden Frawley.

How do you feel about your pitching entering the season? We return two of our starters from last year (Michael Poggioreale and Justin Adams). Brendan Duane is returning to the rotation after being injured for his junior year.

Your lineup? I feel good about our lineup. We have players who are contact hitters and will put the ball in play and put pressure on our opponents. We return three of our top hitters from last year’s lineup.

Your defense? Defense should be our strength and keep us in every game, giving us the chance to win. We are very strong up the middle with Matthew Latino at shortstop and Matthew Rubin in center field.

What are your team goals? Play consistent good baseball for the entire year and see what happens!

Which team(s) is your biggest rival? Pleasantville, Briarcliff and Valhalla are all equal rivals!

When is your opening game? April 1st at Keio.

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