Granby " Middle Park softball team swings into 7-3 record |

Granby " Middle Park softball team swings into 7-3 record

The girls softball team at Middle Park High continued its comeback season by racking up three more victories in its last four games.

The Panther girls’ record for the start of their 2008 season now stands at 7-3 after last week’s games. This is a major improvement for the team that failed to win any games last year.

“Our 7-3 record shows us that we are right on track and where we should be,” said coach Robbie Cheesman. “A couple of those losses were games we should have won, but sometimes the ball just doesn’t bounce the right way. The main thing is that our girls are improving and enjoying playing the game again.”

The first of last week’s games was Tuesday, Sept. 2, at St. Mary’s Academy in Denver. Middle Park’s players romped to victory with a 10-0 shutout.

“We finally put together a full game both of offense and defense,” Cheesman said. “It was a good win for us because it was a league game. Our girls took care of business quickly and we went home.”

Some of the highlights on offense for the Panthers in that game included: Katie Mattfield going 2 for 3 at bat with two doubles; Becca Hugley 2 for 3 with a home run and four RBIs; and Kathryn Woodard 1 for 1 with a triple.

Last Friday and Saturday, Sept. 5-6, Middle Park softballers played in the Eagle Valley Tournament in Gypsum. They won two of three games.

In the tournament’s opening game Friday, the Panther girls crushed Steamboat Springs’ Lady Sailors by a score of 15-0.

“It was another good win for us,” Cheesman said. “Our girls didn’t have to play much defense because our pitcher Katy Mulligan threw a no-hitter that included striking out eight batters.”

On offense, Mattfield was 2 for 2 with a double and three RBIs while Katelyn Anderson was 2 for 2 with two RBIs. Lilah Clancy was 1 for 1, earning two RBIs.

“We came to play and our girls really stepped up,” Cheesman said. “Anytime you have a no-hitter is a good game. It was a great way to start the weekend.”

The low point of the tournament took place Saturday morning when Middle Park was shut out 12-0 by Aspen. The loss was a shock for the Panthers, who had beaten Aspen in both games of a doubleheader in August.

“Aspen was much improved in this game,” Cheesman said. “And the bats we took off the bus that morning must have had holes in them because we just could not get a hit.”

While the Panthers struggled at the plate, Aspen batters earned 17 hits.

“When you give up that many hits, it’s not very conducive to getting a win,” Cheesman said. “It was one of those games where a coach gets more gray hair.”

Rebounding from the morning’s loss, Middle Park ballplayers got their game back on track and they beat Eagle Valley’s junior varsity 18-6 in the Saturday afternoon game.

“It was probably the best game we played all weekend,” Cheesman said. “And our bats no longer had holes in them. We were hitting the ball all over the field.”

The team’s batting drought was over with the Panthers earning a total of 21 hits including home runs by Mattfield, Anderson, Clancy and Hannah Davidson.

“Our defense also played like it should by getting one out at a time,” Cheesman said. “That win was a good way wrap up the weekend.”

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