Hornets Have Youth And Experience
Now that the snow has melted, most high schools are practicing and playing games, but, not in Hundred. There, the snow did a number on the ball field and caused the lightpoles to collapse.
The field has been closed and lightpoles are expected to be is expected to be repaired in April. Meanwhile, they are using the little league field at Long Drain School.
Second year Hundred Head Coach Brian Bartlett and softball guru Larry Tustin are doing everything they can to keep up their team’s spirits. “It’s hard when you don’t have a younger program and have to work a little longer with the first-year players until they catch on,” said Bartlett. “The older girls are helping the younger girls and they are getting better every day.”
Bartlett and Tustin will need to replace Mindy Lemley, Chelsea Kuhn, JoDanna Simpson and Nancy Cumberledge lost to graduation. However, Tustin isn’t a novice to fastpitch softball and will has one of the finest female athletes in Jordyn Gorby to teach the art of pitching. Besides Gorby, the Hornets have senior Rachel Ashcraft and junior standout Macy Woods at their disposal to pitch some innings.
Gorby can not only pitch, she is one of their most consistent hitters, too. Along with Woods and McDiffitt, the Hornets have a nucleus to start with. Woods will start at the hot corner, while McDiffitt will hold down first base.
If you throw in Ashcraft at second base, sophomore Mercedes Goff at shortstop and Haley Hayes behind the plate, the Hornets will be as strong as any team in the area in Class A. However, only one upper classmen is left on the roster in the outfield, Lindsay Burley. The Hornets will not be as strong until the younger players start learning their positions.
Starting in left field will be freshmen Taylor Ashcraft and in right field Emily Ebbert, with fellow freshmen Nicole Bogan, Michelle Maclelland, Meranda Roe, Shelley Cork and Katie Tennant each waiting in the wings.
“Half of our players are freshmen,” said Bartlett. “Each girl will get her opportunity to play, and play a lot.”
Because their usual field is down, Hundred will play many of its games on the road. If the Hornets can keep their heads above water until their field is ready to go, Hundred could be a much stronger club the second half of the season.
“There is always a positive if you can keep the faith,” said Tustin. “We are looking forward to watching the girls perform and grow as we go.”
Hundred will be on the road for the next several weeks and if things come into plan the Lady Hornets could host Valley on April 12. Meanwhile, weather permitting, they will challenge Valley March 31, Clay-Battelle April 1 and play a double-header in the North Marion Tournament April 2. Notre Dame follows on April 8.
The Hundred Girls’ Softball Team won a double header against Morgantown Trinity March 27 in Morgantown by the combined score of 20-6.
In the first game, the Hornets exploded for 10 runs on 18 hits, while stealing seven bases to gain the nod, 10-5.
Hornet senior Rachel Ashcraft was the winning pitcher. She worked three and two-thirds innings, striking out six, walking six, while allowing only two hits. Jordyn Gorby worked the final three and one-third innings and gave up three hits, while striking out six and walking one.
Offensively, Haley Hayes and Macy Woods each pounded out two singles and a double, while stealing two bases to lead the charge. Mercedez Goff followed their lead with three singles and added two stolens. Gorby, Ashcraft and Lindsay Burley each smacked a pair of singles, while Raven McDiffitt, Emily Ebert and Nicole Bogan each drilling singles.
In the second game, the Lady Hornets pushed across 10 runs on 18 hits and stole seven bases. Gorby went the distance to gain the nod from the rubber. She struck out 10 batters, while limiting Trinity to five hits and walking none.
Gorby helped herself at the plate. She drilled three singles and belted a double, while scoring three runs to lead the charge. Burley added a pair of doubles.
Woods continued to pound the ball in game two, adding a pair of singles and a double, while stealing a pair of bases. McDiffitt an Goff each added to the cause with two singles, a combined five stolen bases, while scoring six of the 10 Hornet runs.
Other Lady Hornets contributing hits included Hayes, Rachel and Taylor Ashcraft, Ebert, and Michelle Maclelland.
“The girls really played two great games. Rachel Ashcraft and Jordyn Gorby pitched well and kept us in the game,” said Hornet Head Coach Brian Bartlett. “Our fielding was really great and offensively we put the bat on the ball and made things happen. We must continue to get better. The best thing of all was that every girl got to play and bat. Our team chemistry is really coming along and I’m excited for the rest of the season. The more we play the better we get.”
Hundred will take on Valley in Pine Grove March 31, and if all goes well with he weather, they are scheduled to host Clay-Battelle on April Fools Day.