Softball: Former Shaler coach Skip Palmer dies

Written by Sarah Spencer on .

Sarah Spencer reports that former Shaler softball coach Skip Palmer passed away over the weekend.

"Former Shaler softball coach Skip Palmer died Saturday, succumbing to injuries from an earlier fall, according to Shaler athletic director Clint Rauscher. He was 66.

"It was one of those really crazy, fluke-y things," Rauscher said.

Palmer had coached the softball team for 12 years, leading Shaler to a WPIAL Class 4A title in 2014, and retired at the end of last season in May. He taught math at the school for 34 years.

Rauscher said Palmer was important to Shaler and his death had hit the community hard, particularly since it came as a surprise."


Football: Shaler should have resolution to coaching situation soon

Written by Brian Batko on .

Brian Batko takes a look at the coaching situation at Shaler.

"The Shaler football program has been stuck in limbo for three weeks, but the Titans hope they'll be able to forge ahead soon.

Since the abrupt departure of coach Jon LeDonne, set to enter his fourth season at the helm this fall, Shaler has had to keep its offseason routine intact as best as possible. That means not as much field work, given that there's no playbook at the moment, but a little more time hitting the weights — as they wait.

LeDonne, who did not respond to a request for comment, moved within the ruthlessly competitive Class 6A Northern Seven Conference, accepting the head coaching position across the river at Penn Hills just before Memorial Day weekend. Departures don't often happen that late in the spring, but then again, positions aren't often open that late, either.

"I thought we were ready to go into summer. He always, through the process, kept moving forward, planning for the summer, putting everything in place, working with the kids even up until the last day," said second-year Shaler athletic director Clint Rauscher. "It was disappointing — definitely disappointing to the kids.""


Track: North Feature Athlete - Shaler's John Franklin

Written by Brittany Goncar on .

Name: John Franklin
School: Shaler
Grade: 11
Sport: Track & Field
Events: 110-meter hurdles and 400 relay

Background: Franklin is a multi-sport athlete as he also participates in basketball. The junior took seventh place at the 110-meter hurdles at the WPIAL Class 3A championships with a time of 15.50.


Track: North Feature Athlete - Shaler's Rylee Donovan

Written by Brittany Goncar on .

Name: Rylee Donovan
School: Shaler
Grade: 12
Sport: Track and field
Event: Javelin

Background: Donovan is a first-year track and field participant. She has been progressing through several events, but has made great strides in the javelin throw. She currently has the sixth-best girls javelin throw in school history, and with that throw she qualified for WPIAL championships. Donovan is attending Allegheny College in the fall where she will major in pre-med and play basketball.


Alumni Update - Rachel Boody (Robert Morris)

Written by Drew Karpen on .

Moon Township, Pa. – Robert Morris University concluded the 2017 Northeast Conference Outdoor Track & FieldBoody RMU Championships Sunday in Emmitsburg, Md., by finishing fourth with 91 points. It marks the most points scored by the Colonials since 2014, when RMU finished with 131.50 at the RMU Island Sports Center on Neville Island. It's also the second highest point total for Robert Morris in the last 11 years.

Sacred Heart won its third consecutive NEC outdoor crown with 145 points, edging Central Connecticut (142). LIU Brooklyn finished third with 95 points, and rounding out the field after the Colonials was Mount St. Mary's (79), Saint Francis U (69), Wagner and Fairleigh Dickinson (63 points each), Bryant (54) and St. Francis Brooklyn (18).

Taking home major awards for the Colonials at the conclusion of the meet Sunday was freshman Lilly Harnish and senior Rachel Boody. Harnish was tabbed the Most Outstanding Field Performer in the jumps as well as the Most Outstanding Rookie Performer, while Boody was selected as the Most Outstanding Field Performer in the throws.

On the heels of being crowned the 2017 NEC outdoor champion in the discus Saturday, Boody, a Shaler graduate, finished second in the hammer throw Sunday. She posted a toss of 53.54 meters (175'8.25") in the third round. At the 2017 NEC Outdoor Track & Field Championships, Boody scored 19 points for Robert Morris, the highest total since Rachael Kotula scored 22 in 2014 and tied for the eighth highest total in school history.

The duo of Boody and Harnish, meanwhile, join Kotula and Nicole Downing (2004, 2005) in school history to be named Most Outstanding Field Performer.


(photo courtesy of Robert Morris University)