PUNXSUTAWNEY — With more than 3,500 votes counted for The Punxsutawney Spirit's first-ever 2010-2011 Fall and Winter Sports Male and Female Most Valuable Players, the public will now have an opportunity to choose the initial 2011 Spring Sports Male and Female Most Valuable Players.
Two athletes have been chosen from each of Punxsy's five spring sports: Baseball, boys' tennis, boys' track and field, girls' track and field and softball.
Readers will have a chance to decide one boy among six and one girl among four to create one winner for each gender.
Each voter may select one male and one female from the options available as often as he or she would like, as long as the voter uses the ballot (today's is on Page 7) provided in The Spirit, and delivers his or her choices to P.O. Box 444, 510 Pine St., Punxsutawney, PA 15767.
The top vote-getters from each gender will win a plaque and recognition for being named the first-ever Spring Sports winners.
The deadline to vote is at 5 p.m. Friday, June 24.
Jordan Mesoraco, Senior
Mesoraco led the Chucks in batting average (.440), doubles (nine), hits (33) and was among the team leaders in runs (21) and RBIs (29). He was the team's primary catcher and was either the No. 3 or No. 4 hitter in the order.
A.J. Meterko, Senior
Meterko won the 800- and 1,600-meter run District IX Class AAA Championships as an individual and was the final leg of Punxsy's 4x800-meter relay victory. He was also the team's high point-scorer on the track.
Brody Morgan, Junior
Specializing in the javelin, Morgan was the Chucks' top point-scorer in the field. He was the team's most consistent scorer in the javelin, shot put and discus, and he finished third at districts in the javelin.
Adam Murdock, Senior
One of the school's top singles players for the past few years, Murdock competed at the singles and team districts for the Chucks as the No. 2 in the singles tournament and No. 3 in the doubles tournament.
Dave Roberts, Senior
The team's top player since he was a junior, Roberts finished as the District IX Class AAA singles, doubles and team runner-up. He was the No. 1 player in the singles and team tournaments and was part of the No. 2 doubles team.
Tyler Skerkavich, Senior
Skerkavich hit a team-best five home runs and drove in 33 base runners out of the No. 3 or No. 4 slot in the lineup. He also batted .378, had 28 hits and scored 23 times while mostly playing at first base.
Ashley Barenchik, Senior
Hitting out of the leadoff spot, Barenchik was among the team leaders in average (.340), RBIs (14) and tied for team-best in extra-base hits (seven) and home runs (three) during the regular season. Her three home runs in 2011 and five home runs for her career both tied for the school record.
Shawnna Crago, Senior
Crago led Punxsy in RBIs (16), steals (14) and tied Barenchik with three home runs in 2011 and five home runs in her career — both school records — while hitting .360 during the regular season. Crago also pitched 62 1/3-innings and struck out 62 batters with a 7-4 record and 1.91 ERA during the regular season.
Nickita Martz, Senior
For the fourth consecutive season, Martz won the District IX Class AAA Championship in the javelin. All four times, she advanced to states. This year, she placed 11th at states with a heave of 123-10 after she entered the event as the No. 20 seed. She was the top point-scorer in the field, also excelling in the shot put and discus.
Milea Schall, Senior
Schall won her first district track title in the 3,200-meter run, where she defeated the competition by more than 30 seconds. At states, she broke the school record in the event in 11:25.02, or more than 11 seconds better than the school's previous best mark. She also was the top point-scorer on the track for Punxsy.