BERKELEY SPRINGS— The Grafton High School Lady Bearcats softball team left it all on the field, as they entered tournament play on Saturday.
The team traveled to Morgan County to take on the Berkeley Springs Indians, and was quick to knock in six runs, taking the early lead and never looking back.
The inning opened with a single by Aubree Collins on a 2-2 count, which scored Grafton their first run. From there ,the Lady Cats would continue to dominate when at bat.
On the night, the team collected nine hits at the bats of Amber Smith, Savanna Wyckoff, Collins and Jordan Niggemyer, who each recorded multiple hits. Smith and Collins each earned triples for their team, as well.
With those nine hits, the Lady Cats dominated the diamond, notching in 14 runs, and stealing 15 bases, with Niggemyer leading in stolen bases with six.
Meanwhile, Grafton not only excelled on the offensive end, but defensively the team only allowed the Indians two runs during the contest.
Toeing the rubber for the Lady Bearcats was senior Mia Chambers. The righthander went for five innings, surrendering just two runs on four hits and striking out seven Lady Indians.
With the impressive 14-2 victory of Berkeley Springs, Grafton advanced to sectional play, traveling to Keyser looking for a win over the top rate Golden Tornadoes.
Unfortunately, the contest would not see the Lady Cats fare as well.
The Golden Tornadoes came to win, and pulled away early, reversing the role on the Lady Bearcats, as they would see struggles from home plate throughout the game.
Kesyer knocked in two runs during the first inning with homers by Carlie DelSignore and Alexa Shoemaker.
However, Grafton saw a glimmer of hope, when Lady Cat Fredrique Maloley knocked one of her own out of the park, claiming one run for the team.
Despite the spark brought on by Maloley’s slam, Grafton struggled to contain the high-powered offense of the Tornadoes.
The Lady Cats gave up nine runs, and only collected one of their own over six innings of play.
“We played hard, and made the plays we could make,” shared head coach Tyler Cox. “We put the bat on the ball but couldn’t get anything strung together. Fred started us off right with that solo home run, we just couldn’t add to it.”
Maloley, Collins and Niggemyer combined for Grafton’s only three hits, and at the conclusion of the contest, the Cats’ season had ended with a 1-9 loss. However, Cox noted that he is happy with how the season played out, commenting on the toughness of the Keyser team, and taking pride in the fact that his girls played right along with them until the end.
“It was the game that every coach hates,” remarked Cox. “The last game of the year; for our seniors, Haley Perks, Olivia Shaver, Ashlyn Zbosnik, Mia Chambers and Aubree Collins, it was their final game in a Bearcat uniform. We will miss them.”
He continued by saying the team had been blessed with a great group of senior leaders who contributed greatly to the success seen in the Grafton High School softball program.
“Getting 18 wins in a season is pretty good! That ranks up there with the most wins in a season,” shared Cox. “Overall the year was great. We got better as the season went along and we are headed down the right road.”
He added that he and the rest of the coaching staff is looking forward to the upcoming season saying, “We have a great core of players that will be ready to go for next season and build even more.”
Individual Box Scores (GHS vs Indians):
K. Spiker: AB-3, R-1, H-1, RBI-0, BB-1, SO-1, M. Chambers: AB-3, R-0, H-1, RBI-0, BB-1, SO-0, J. Niggemyer: AB-3, R-3, H-2, RBI-0, BB-1, SO-1, A. Wyer: AB-0, R-2, H-0, RBI-0, BB-0, SO-0, O. Shaver: AB-1, R-2, H-0, RBI-1, BB-2, SO-0, A. Smith: AB-4, R-2, H-1, RBI-0, BB-1, SO-0, F. Maloley: AB-3, R-1,H-0, RBI-0, BB-1, SO-0, A. Collins: AB-3, R-2, H-2, RBI-2, BB-1, SO-0, G. Purkey: AB-2, R-1, H-0,RBI-1, BB-1, SO-0, B. Purkey: : AB-1, R-0, H-0,RBI-0, BB-0, SO-0, S. Wyckoff: AB-3, R-0, H-2, RBI-3,BB-1, SO-1
Individual Box Scores (GHS vs Golden Tornadoes):
K. Spiker: AB-3, R-0, H-0, RBI-0, BB-0, SO-2, M. Chambers: AB-2, R-0, H-0, RBI-0, BB-0, SO-1, J. Niggemyer: AB-3, R-0, H-1, RBI-0, BB-0, SO-1, O. Shaver: AB-2, R-0, H-0, RBI-0, BB-0, SO-1 F. Maloley: AB-2, R-1,H-1, RBI-1, BB-0, SO-0, A. Collins: AB-2, R-0, H-1, RBI-0, BB-0, SO-0, G. Purkey: AB-2, R-0, H-0,RBI-0, BB-0, SO-0, S. Wyckoff: AB-2, R-0, H-0, RBI-0,BB-0, SO-0 M. Shaver: AB-2, R-0, H-0, RBI-0, BB-0, SO-1