Honoring Senior Student-Athletes: Franklin Tech Eagles

  • Franklin Tech's Max Leh hits a single against Turners Falls in action last season. Leh is one of six members of the baseball team’s Class of 2020. Staff FILE Photo/Dan Little

  • Franklin Tech's Hailey Jackson (5) slides safely back into first base ahead of the tag from Mohawk's Ashley Walker (3) on a pickoff attempt back in 2018. Jackson and the Franklin Tech seniors were slated to be in the mix atop the Tri-County League this spring. STAFF FILE PHOTO/Dan Little

  • Franklin Tech's Garret Cole pitches against Turners Falls in action last season. Cole is one of six members of the baseball team’s Class of 2020. Staff FILE Photo/Dan Little

  • Franklin Tech’s Jocelyn Crowningshield leaps back from a low, inside pitch during action in a previous season. Crowningshield was set to be one of the senior leaders for the Eagles this spring. Staff FILE Photo/PAUL FRANZ

  • Franklin Tech’s Kelsey Winship connects against Hopkins Academy in past softball action. Winship and the Eagles’ senior class were set for a big year on the diamond. Staff FILE Photo/PAUL FRANZ

  • Franklin Tech wide receiver Lucas Upham lines up under the lights last fall against Chicopee in Turners Falls. Upham is one of two senior track stars for the Eagles along with Donte Rosewarne. STAFF FILE PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

Staff Writer
Published: 6/3/2020 4:05:08 PM

It was a spring season that never happened.

While folks throughout Franklin County have been impacted over the past few months due to the coronavirus pandemic, we here at the Recorder sports department have decided to honor all the senior student-athletes who were unable to participate in spring sports. Practices and games were canceled, championship trophies weren’t able to be chased, but the graduating seniors throughout our coverage area still deserve to have their stories told and be honored.

We will recognize all eight of our MIAA schools over the course of two weeks, with senior rosters, photos and information about them all.

We continue today with Franklin County Technical School’s seniors. Here are their stories, as told by their coaches:

Baseball

Seniors: Garret Cole, Max Leh, Jared Vielmetti-Perusse, Jacob Shaw, Dylan Mallet, Shawn Telega

After breaking through with a postseason victory in 2019, the Franklin Tech baseball team had hoped to build on that momentum with another big year in the Tri-County League South this spring.

Head coach Dan Prasol had a solid core of seniors looking to do just that, and the skipper expected to once again be in the mix before things came crashing to a halt just before practice was set to begin.

Setting the table was Cole, who had recently wrapped up a standout basketball career in the winter and was slated to contribute for the Eagles this spring on the mound and in center field.

“Garret figured to be a starting pitcher or closer for the team,” offered Prasol. “He was slated to start in center field and would have been a co-captain his senior year. He would have batted out of the four-hole this season.”

Leh, another veteran varsity player, was set to join Cole on the mound and in the outfield.

“Max would have been one of the starting pitchers on the team, sharing center field duties with Cole and Nate Sciandra in left field,” said Prasol. “He was one of the most versatile players on the team offering to fill in and learn any position based on need.”

Vielmetti-Perusse was set to be the team’s starting first baseman this spring, providing a veteran presence at a key position.

“Jared’s versatility would have also allowed him to play right field and pitch in relief,” Prasol said.

Behind the plate, Shaw would’ve been in the mix for key innings as the team’s catcher.

“Jacob was slated to be the lead contender for catching duties his senior year,” the coach said. “Jacob has always been a knowledgeable and dependable player on the team.”

A versatile option, Mallet was set to occupy several roles in the Franklin Tech lineup over the course of the spring campaign.

“Dylan factored in to pitch in relief as well as play some outfield for FCTS,” Prasol said. “His desire to learn positions made him an asset.”

Telega was slated to be the team’s starting shortstop this season, and was likely to see some innings out of the bullpen.

“His bunting abilities as well as smart base running would have put him in the two-hole for the start of the season,” offered Prasol.

Softball

Seniors: Isabelle Duga, Mia Scott, Jocelyn Crowningshield, Hailey Jackson, Kelsey Winship

It was to be a changing of the guard at the helm of the Franklin Tech softball program this spring. Athletic director Joe Gamache was signed up for his first season of varsity duty leading the softball team, taking on the role in addition to his gigs as football and girls basketball coach at the school.

“I can speak to each of the five seniors who were expected to play softball this year but have not actually coached them in softball,” said Gamache.

Duga, enrolled in landscaping and horticulture at the school, was to make her softball debut in 2020. She was the captain of the girls basketball team this past season that won a postseason game for the first time in program history, and has also earned varsity letters in volleyball and soccer.

Scott is a dual enrollment student who attends classes at Greenfield Community College, and is enrolled in Tech’s health technology program. She has been on the softball team at FCTS since her sophomore year when she transferred into the school.

Winship is another veteran player who is enrolled in landscaping and horticulture. The experienced athlete has also participated on the volleyball team during her tenure as an Eagle.

Jackson would have been appearing in her fourth year as a varsity softball player at the school. A health technology student, she also participated in three years of basketball and four years of field hockey.

Rounding out the talented and experienced senior class is Crowningshield, who was enrolled in machine technology. A three-sport athlete and captain, she has been a key contributor on the soccer, basketball and softball teams for all four years of her high school career.

Boys track & field

Seniors: Donte Rosewarne, Lucas Upham

Rosewarne was a captain his junior year, and big things were expected from the speedster entering his final spring in a Franklin Tech uniform.

A four-year track athlete, Rosewarne competed in the 100 and 200 meters, in addition to the 4x100 and 4x400 relays.

“Donte’s goals seemed reasonable and he could have achieved them this year,” offered Tech coach Roman Tsipenyuk. “He wanted to run a 100 under 11.0 seconds.”

Rosewarne was on a 4x100 relay team that included Upham, and the squad put together impressive times during the 2019 season.

Upham began competing on the track team his sophomore year, and took to the hurdles quickly. His 400-meter hurdle times improved dramatically, dropping down to 1:15. 

“He was truly working on becoming better as an athlete and as a human being,” Tsipenyuk lauded. “In other words he would come and work at hurdling even when there was no coach. Although he was quiet when there was something on his mind you could almost see him working through it.”

The coach said that both runners would have been in the mix for Western Mass. and Vocational Championship qualification this spring, had the season happened.

“I will miss them very much,” Tsipenyuk said.


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