All Varsity Kansas Stories

State Softball Notes

Published May 28 at 8:02 p.m. | Last updated May 28 at 5:37 p.m.

Class 6A

Maize (18-4) is led by senior CF Emily Griggs, a two-time All-Metro selection. Griggs is hitting .618 with one strikeout, has seven doubles, 38 runs and 18 of Maize’s 37 stolen bases. Sophomore SS Allie Jurgensen is hitting .433 with six of Maize’s 13 home runs, and 32 RBIs while junior C Lexi Eisenbart is hitting .361 with 25 RBIs, seven doubles. The Eagles’ pitching tandem of Meghan Grimes (1.85 ERA) and Caitlin Randolph (1.45) has been consistently solid.

Class 5A

Carroll (22-0), the three-time defending Class 5A champ, is money on the mound with senior Jessi Haffner (3-0 in 5A title games, 0.48 ERA, Oklahoma State signee) and junior Brittany Finney (0.51 ERA, Oklahoma commit). The Eagles, who have 53 homers, are tough offensively with a wicked lineup that includes Haffner (.692 batting average, 47 RBIs, 20 doubles, 10 homers), Finney (.561, 37 RBIs, nine homers), junior C Lauren Buchanan (.627) senior 2B Morgan Balderas (.590, 37 RBIs, eight homers), senior CF Hunter Hogan (.550) and freshman 3B Madison Miller (.565, 33 RBIs). Carroll has a .974 fielding percentage and has given up six earned runs in 90 innings.

The top eight hitters for Kapaun (16-6) are hitting over .400, with senior CF Lily Channel leading the way with a .574 average and a 1.103 slugging percentage. Junior SS Adrienne Esposito is hitting .471, DP/U Allie Heiman .491. The Crusaders have relied on three pitchers, including freshman Kody Ross and seniors Leighton Pounds and Bailey Holm. Kapaun’s losses are to Carroll, Northwest and Goddard, who had a combined 59 wins.

Maize South (18-4) came out of one of the toughest regionals in any class, defeating unbeaten Goddard in the final. Senior Kelsey Sterneker, a 2013 All-Metro selection and Wichita State signee, has carried the pitching load and is 13-3 with 120 strikeouts and a 1.41 ERA. She also has a team-high 21 RBIs and six homers. Maize South, which has a .937 team-fielding percentage, has 13 stolen bases each from Macy Allred and Taylor Mannis. Mannis has a team-high batting average (.415), while Allred is hitting .410 and they have scored a combined 44 runs. Nicole Gaboian and Shelby Mansfield are also hitting over .400.

Class 4A-Division I

Augusta (18-4), which has won 38 games over the past two seasons, finished second in 4A in 2013. The Orioles were swept by Maize South on May 8, which woke them up to how they need to play to win a title, according to coach Shane Steinkamp. Seven players are hitting over .400, including Katy Nordman (.469, 34 RBIs, 30 runs), Taylor Hinnenkamp (.455), Morgan Kirk (.431, 36 runs, 25 RBIs), Kylie Wesbrooks (.416, 41 runs), Brooke Eberhardt (.413, 29 RBIs) and Casady Marlnee (.400, six homers, 35 RBIs). Augusta’s pitchers are Megan Hayes (2.53 ERA) and Brooke Eberhardt (2.44).

Offense has been consistently strong for McPherson (16-6), which has a team slugging percentage of .555. The Bullpups’ top hitters are sophomore SS Chelsey Kerr (.527 batting, .986 slugging, 27 RBIs, 35 runs, six homers, six triples), junior C Jasmin Wann (.438) and junior P/3B Madison Hoffman (.446, 30 runs, five triples). McPherson is without senior leadoff and CF Kiley Kerr, who went out with a season-ending injury eight games into the season.

Rose Hill (12-10) upset top-seeded Mulvane in its regional final after finishing the regular season at .500. The Rockets, who have won five of six, have been inconsistent throughout — despite sweeping Clearwater —often winning the first game of a doubleheader and then losing the second in a close battle. Sophomore LF Dani Sherwin is the top hitter (.472 batting, 11 doubles, 26 RBIs), while sophomore SS/CF Kendra Baldridge is hitting .405. Rose Hill is led on the mound by junior Peyton Wheeler (3.81 ERA) and freshman Christine Dock (2.79).

Class 4A-Division II

Clearwater (18-4) is led by senior SS Bryna Vogel and sophomore 2B Hayley Reibenspies, who are both hitting over .600. Vogel, Reibenspies, sophomore 3B/P Sydney Warren and sophomore OF Elise Oberlechner each have more than 30 runs scored, with Vogel leading the way at 42. Five players have more than 20 RBIs, including Reibenspies’ 47. Vogel has been an All-Metro selection in volleyball (2012, 13), basketball (2014) and softball (2013). Sophomore P Sarah Teufel is 16-2 with a 3.73 ERA in more than 100 innings.

Pratt (19-3), which finished third in 4A in 2013, has won eight in a row and all were shutouts. Senior P Brittnee Hill (15-2) has a 0.07 ERA with 13 shutouts and one no-hitter. Pratt, which has a team batting average of .434, is led offensively by senior OF Bailey Gillig (.486 batting, 24 RBIs), senior SS Lauren Rambat (.525, 33 runs, 22 RBIs), senior OF Dakota Jones (.414, 11 doubles, 22 RBIs) and junior C Savanah Buntemeyer (.440, 29 RBIs). Coach Mike Forshee is 162-59 with five straight state berths.

Class 3A

Cheney (21-2) was unbeaten in the Central Plains League for its second straight league title but earned its first state tournament berth. Pitcher Emily Jacobs has been critical both on the mound (16-2, 1.42 ERA) and hitting (.456 batting, 45 RBIs). The offense is led by SS Caitlyn Molyneux (.512), C Torrey Lonker (33 RBIs) and Megan Miller, who has 20 stolen bases. CF Haley Adolph has been errorless. Cheney’s only losses came to Valley Center and Campus, which are in Class 5A and 6A.

Haven (19-4) won its first 15 games, and while it was swept by Pratt and split with Hillsboro and Lyons-Chase, those teams are state qualifiers. Junior CF Sam Stallbaumer (.662 batting, 12 extra-base hits, 22 RBIs) has set state records in stolen bases (63) and runs (56). Sophomores Shelby Davis (2B, .493 batting), Jacy Ummel (SS, .547) and Katelynn Stucky (3B, .403) have a combined 92 RBIs, while Davis and Ummel have a combined 39 stolen bases.

With four Central Kansas League schools earning postseason berths, Lyons-Chase (16-7) coach Marlin Clark credits a tough schedule for a return to the 3A tournament. Senior P/3B Aubrey Hollinger (2.65 ERA, 71 sstrikeouts) and sophomore Laura Pineda (3.41 ERA) have been consistent. The offense is led by sophomore 2B Morgan Michaelis (.536 batting, 14 doubles, 27 RBIs, 24 runs), junior SS Brenna McClure (.473, 11 doubles, 29 RBIs, 30 runs), senior OF Breanna Lutschg (.449), junior OF Deanna Lutschg (.412) and junior C Lauren Barker (.444, 26 RBIs).

Class 2-1A

Defense has been a staple for Hillsboro (21-2), which has a .956 fielding percentage. Senior SS Danae Bina, who hits .600, has one error. Seniors Julie Sinclair and Allison Weber have been nails on the mound with a 0.59 and 1.93 ERA, respectively. Offensively, 2B/C Madison Klein and Sinclair are hitting .594, while CF Emily Jost is hitting .478, C/2B Bradli Nowak .442.

In the past three seasons, Udall (20-3) has finished second to Chase County twice and won 2-1A in 2011. Udall has played without P Victoria Benvin, a three-time league MVP who suffered a knee injury in basketball season. Junior Carlie Bratcher (10-1, 125 strikeouts, four no-hitters) and sophomore Kelsie Hoffman (9-2, five walks, one no-hitter) have filled in nicely. Senior SS Sami Loos has a team-high .647 batting average with 51 runs and 25 extra-base hits, including eight homers, while senior 1B Daylen Holmes has a .545 average, 20 extra-base hits. Udall is 302-33 in 14 seasons under coach Jack Kistler.

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