Frenship softball team looks to build off nine returning lettermen
By Zach Tijerina
Coaches get excited when they are able to return a handful of players from a district winning team.
Coaches get even more excited when a few of those players led the team in either offensive or defensive categories.
The Frenship softball coaches have every reason to be excited about the upcoming season.
It is returning nine lettermen from a District 4-4A championship team that finished 8-0 in district and made it to the regional semi-finals in the playoffs.
“With all the experience returning, are are going to be a pretty solid team,” said Frenship head coach Robby Dickenson. “Not having to replace many players is a good thing.”
The Tigers only lost two players from last season’s team. Outfielder Megan Low and pitcher Hope Baker. Both players played vital rolls on the rteam. Low had a .392 batting average. Baker had 10 wins from the circle and boasted a 1.45 ERA.
“Megan and Hope were both really fast,” said senior Ashley Nabors. “They were people to look up too and we want to build from them. I think we have an old enough and experienced enough team to do well this year.”
Dickenson said it is usually a hard job replacing players like Low and Baker, but he has a talented new class of players that should make the transition easier. He said Harlee Jordan, Victoria Rodriguez and Jori McClennan should provide support in the batting order.
With nine returning teammates, the team feels confident working alongside each other.
“I think we have a lot of team chemistry early on, “ said Ashton Bell. “We are talking a lot more on the field and we are coming together as a team. We have a lot of desire to win as a team.”
Dickenson said he expects his returning starters to keep the transition to the varsity team smooth for the new players.
“Our seniors are doing a really good job of taking the leadership role,” said Dickenson. “Ashley (Nabors), Kenzi (Carnell), Ky (Rodriguez) and Ciara (Rasberry) are all doing their part and it is really helping.”
Dickenson said he expects better production from his returners because they have more experience.
“I know we are more experienced,” said Dickenson. “Last year we had a lot of talent, but the girls just didn’t have much experience. You can already see a difference and maturity in the girls from last year. Their confidence is much higher and that will be able to carry us far”
Frenship’s top offensive returners include Bell who led the team with a .430 batting average 44 RBI. She was named all-city as a freshman and went 10-3 as a pitcher. She finished the regular season with a 1.14 ERA in 921/3 innings while striking out 152 batters.
“Hopefully I can stay where I am at and build from last year,” said Bell. “I want to reach my personal goals in pitching and hitting because it will help the team reach our team goals. I want to just get better.”
Maddie Johnson had a .362 batting average and a team-high six home-runs.
Kenzi Carnell will provide is set to fill Baker’s shoes at the pitching position. Carnell began the season with a 1.97 ERA in 12 games played before an injury ended her season in the circle.
Ciara Rasberry is also set to help the pitching staff.
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