Westmoreland HS Athletes of the Week: Cheyenne Piper of Ligonier Valley, Donavin Waller of Greensburg Salem
Saturday April 16, 2022 | 3:13 p.m.
The school: Ligonier Valley
Sport: Soft ball
Year: Second year
Claim to Fame: Piper had an unforgettable week, delivering a perfect game and then warming up with the bat as the Rams won four straight.
She pitched a perfect game in a 7-0 win over Punxsutawney in her first college start. She struck out 15 and didn’t make a walk to replace fireball Maddie Griffin, a senior and regular starter who was resting from an injury. Griffin threw five perfect games last season.
Piper then hit two homers and drove in three runs as the Rams shut out Steel Valley, 15-0, in three innings.
She picked up another victory in a 19-0 win over Jeannette, striking out six while keeping the Jayhawks hitless. She also had another circuit and drove in three.
For the season, Piper is 3-0 with a 0.47 ERA and has 27 strikeouts and one walk in 15 innings.
Did you see this good fortune coming?
I practiced and prayed to get better at what I do and how I do it. I didn’t know what to think before this stretch except everything comes at the right time and training, and now is the time I guess.
Do you see yourself as a pitcher, a positional player, a good hitter, what? Where else do you play on the pitch?
I see myself as both a pitcher and a position player; no matter which coach calls me that day. Last year I played left field for Ligonier, and this year my position is short and I get to see some time to pitch.
Looking back, what impresses you most about The Perfect Game?
I have to say how long each inning took and how I adjusted to the position being my first time pitching for college.
You can have a ticket for any concert. What group are you going with?
Definitely Waylon Jennings.
Who is the most famous person you have met?
Clint Hurdle when he was manager of the Pirates.
Name another sport in which you excel.
If you count hunting and fishing, then those two.
Coach Mark’s top tips Zimmerman?
I could go on and on about the advice he gives. The best advice he always gives before every game is, “The hungriest dog gets the biggest piece of meat, and if you want to run with the big dogs, you have to pee in the tall grass.”
Favorite TV show, book and movie?
The TV show is “Jane the Virgin”… The Bible… and “Cast Away.”
You are running a Sheetz run. What do you get?
Milo’s Mac ‘n Cheese and tea bites.
The school: Greensburg Salem
Claim to fame: This tri-sport athlete kicked off the track season with a double win at the Lady Spartan/Wildcat Invitational. Victories came in the long jump and triple jump, and he rallied to win both events. He jumped 21 feet, 1 3/4 inches in the long jump and 41-8 in the triple jump. He entered the final in third place. He also does high jumping. He’s cleared 5-10 this season. In football, he had 35 catches for 509 yards and four touchdowns. He also played basketball.
How did you feel about winning the triple jump?
It was amazing, especially winning both. Before the triple jump final, I knew I could win if I made some adjustments. I did some good jumps in the preliminaries, but I made a mistake. But winning both was a huge confidence boost for me. It was a great accomplishment.
What are your best marks on the track?
My personal bests are 42 feet ¼ in the triple jump, 21-1 ¾ in the long jump and 5-10 in the high jump. I want to improve all those ratings this season. The school record in the triple is 47-8 ¼ by Julian Thompson and 22-3 ½ by Mike Crimboli in 1970, the school’s oldest standing record.
Do you want to play sports in college?
Yes, but I don’t have any football or athletics offers. I’ve spoken to a few football coaches, but I’m waiting to see which offer is the best. I’m excited to see what I can do if given a chance.
What are your goals for the season?
Of course I want to win. But I want to rank in the WPIALS and qualify for the state competition. I know I have to keep working hard. I’m looking forward to the Butler Invitational (April 22). I want to see how I rank against some of the top jumpers in the WPIAL. I also want to win county titles (Westmoreland).
What is your favorite meal?
I’m a steak guy. I have 15 oz. steak. No vegetables. No potatoes.
Keywords: Greensburg SalemLigonier Valley