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The Wauwatosa East softball team recently announced their all-conference and team award honors.

Five players had All-Greater Metro Conference honors of some kind.

Infielder Morgan Schmanski was first-team and outfielder Natalie Yahn was second team.

Honorable mention choices were infielders Shea Murphy and Allie Kuhn and utility Cora Bilitz.

Team Awards went to Schmanski (MVP), Murphy (Most Improved) and Yahn (Coaches Award).

'The team awards and accomplishments were a nod to the future, as four of the five players recognized by the conference will return in 2017,' coach Ed Raue said.

Schmanski, a junior, garnered the most votes on the infield with 67 (out of 84). Her 21 RBI led the conference and she was second in batting average at .561.

Yahn left her mark in the program on the field. She leaves a trail of accomplishments.

School records

She holds school records with 89 hits and 16 doubles. She had 92 runs scored and 57 walks, both the second most in history. Her 71 RBIs were the third-most and the four triples were the fourth most.

East will lose three graduating seniors — Yahn, Elantra Willis, and Angie Mitten.

'All three provided unique contributions to the program,' Raue said. 'Willis was the senior leader on the JV team. As she balanced work and softball, she realized her best contribution would be on the JV team and she was the calming influence on the young team.

'Angie came to the program after two years at Milwaukee King. She provided depth and a fun spirit to the bench after sitting out last season as a transfer.'

Good future

The future appears bright for the Raiders, as both pitchers, Bilitz and freshmen Analiese Glawe, return. Bilitz has improved her numbers both in the circle and in the box in each of her three seasons, while Glawe has untapped potential that showed glimpses during the 2016 season, including throwing a no-hitter against West Allis Central.

The infield returns intact with Schmanski at first, Murphy at shortstop and Kuhn at third.

The fourth member of the infield is an on-base machine — Meghan Erickson. As a freshmen, she played outfield and showed her keen eye in setting the school record with 27 walks. As a sophomore, she moved to second base and acclimated herself very well to the position. At bat, she did what she does best and walked 24 times, second most in school history. Her OBP for the season was an amazing .546.

The outfield must replace Yahn, a four-year starter in center field. Freshmen Riley Breider got a lot of experience throughout 2016 and Mollie Schneider returns for her senior season, after missing most of 2016 with an injury.

Taylor Cure and her bat return after her junior season, which was off to a great start. She reached 21 of her first 27 at-bats, but her season was cut short due to injury.

Finally, freshmen Kenzie Miller, who took over the catching duties early in the season, also returns. In 27 at-bats, she struck out once all season and had the only hit in the regional playoff game.