It’s already week 5 in high school softball. It’s crazy to think how fast the season has gone, we are just a couple weeks away from the postseason and teams are trying to jockey for position. Cold and snow put a damper on the week and postponed two days of games. But there is still plenty of softball to talk about.
High School Recap
Austintown Fitch continues to impress over this season. For the last several weeks the Falcons had been dominating so much that Lydia Spalding and Kayla Schubert were able to split time in the circle. However in their second game against Canfield the Cardinals kept the high powered Fitch offense in check, and for the first time in a while Spalding had to throw in high leverage situations. She dazzled. She threw six innings of shutout softball in the Falcons 3-0 win to sweep the Cardinals and remain undefeated in the AAC.
South Range got a season sweep of Hubbard to bounce back from getting swept by Poland the week before. Both teams were tied for second in the NE8 and if they had any chance to catch up with Poland, they needed to win this series. South Range did not mess around a whopped Hubbard 13-0 and 8-5. Kelly Szolek is really starting to become a staple in the Raiders lineup. Szolek tore up the Eagles pitching staff. She has been put in the clean up spot in the Raiders lineup. Even though they got swept, Hubbard did not let the losses bring them down. They went on in their next two games to push Ursuline and Marlington to the absolute brink. Both teams used walk off hits to beat the Eagles. Their record might not show it, but Hubbard will be impressive in the tournament. Freshman Isabella O’Brien is showing off what kind of future she will have. In 59.1 IP she has an ERA of 2.94. She has also knocked in 13 RBI with a batting average of .304. Hubbard is a sleeper in Division II.
Ursuline finally got pushed in to pressure situations over the weekend. They were tested. And they passed with flying colors. Hubbard hit well against the Irish and tied the game at 7 in the 7th but Emily Holland came up with a walk off triple to bring away the 8-7 win. Later in the weekend it was Alyssa Sheely who capped off a 3 run seventh with a go ahead sac fly to give the Irish a 4-3 lead, and eventual win over Bishop Watterson. Ursuline not only came through in multiple pressure situations, but it was consistently different players who came through for them. The Irish sit at number 2 in the latest Ohio Coaches Poll.
Lisbon’s head coach Dave Crismon earned a wonderful career milestone winning his 300th game of his career when the Blue Devils beat Salem 11-0 over the weekend. Mya Emmerling is really stepping up for the Devils in the circle with Emma Thompson out with an injury. Emmerling also pitched Lisbon to a season split with Columbiana. Justyce Vrable hit a game tying 3 run HR in the bottom of the seventh to tie the Clippers, and then Lisbon walked it off with back to back doubles.
Kennedy Vrable, Conchetta Rinaldi, and Sophie Howell took the trip with YSU to Robert Morris where the Penguins split on the road. Rinaldi went 3-3 in Game 1 where the Penguins won. She continues to masterfully call the pitches for YSU, and manage a phenomenal pitching staff. Howell did not get any innings this weekend. Vrable got a couple of at bats off the bench. Caragyn Yanek from South Range celebrated her senior day at Findlay with her seventh win of the year in the circle over Tiffin. Yanek went 6 innings striking out 3 and giving up 3 earned runs. Her ERA is now 2.50 with 70 K and 15 BB.
Special Guest: Amanda Scarborough
Im very honored and blessed to have the opportunity to bring on Amanda Scarborough as this week’s special guest on the Hot Corner. Amanda is one of ESPN’s premiere softball analysts. She began her ESPN career in 2009 calling the Super Regionals. In 2015 she started working the WCWS for ESPN. Scarborough can also be heard across the ESPN family of networks during the regular season. Amanda played softball at Texas A&M from 2005-2008. She was the first student athlete in Big 12 history to earn Freshman of the Year and Player of the Year award in the same season (2005). Amanda now runs a training service called Pitching Angel where Ananda not only develops the physical side of pitching but works with athletes on their mental game inside the circle. You can start training with Amanda by visiting pitching-angel.com. You can also follow Amanda on all her social media platforms for free content and information in her archives.