The Spoofhounds’ softball team saw an explosion of offense in their win against Worth County, beating the Tigers 12-0.
Maryville has been able to rely on pitcher Riley Gray, who has pitched back-to-back shutouts. Coach Chandra Demott noted the chemistry that Gray and catcher Emma Baldwin have developed.
The ‘Hounds were in perfect form and benefited heavily from a nine-run fourth inning. The game was 3-0 through the first three and a half innings until the ‘Hounds exploded from an offensive standpoint.
Demott attributes the offensive explosion to the work that the team has been putting in. Sophomore first basemen Ashleyn Alexander opened up the game in the fourth with a bases loaded triple. Alexander then scored on a wild pitch after batting in three runs.
“Having such an experienced group has really helped benefit our play, along with all the girls playing together as a team,” Demott said. “We only lost one player last year, so we returned a whole crew and brought in a couple of freshmen.”
The ‘Hounds have a lot of experience on the team, with five returning seniors. Seniors Jillian Partridge and Summer Swalley both had much to say about the benefit of having the same coach over their entire high school careers.
“We have a bond with coach Demott, like no other person. She is our go-to person for advice,” Partridge said.
“She has been with us the whole time and now we're finishing with her, it is pretty amazing,” Swalley said.
The way Demott built the program has allowed the players to come together and play as a more cohesive unit.
“We have been comparing our games from last year to this year, and there has been improvement in all of our games so far,” Swalley said.
The team is looking to build upon what they have been doing and find new ways to see that improvement as well. Swalley and Partridge both explained how much Demott drills the players to focus on the fundamental aspects of the game.
Partridge credited the team’s explosion on offense to the rainy days lately, because it has allowed the team to focus on hitting while practicing inside. Swalley also credited the coaches having the players focus on footwork while at the plate.
“We had a situation last night where the bases were loaded with one out, and we were able to come out of that,” Demott said. “Do we want the errors? Not necessarily, but it was nice to see them get out of the inning and not allow a run.”
Demott was pleased with the outcome of the game, even with the mistakes. This situation is one that Demott credited the team’s mental toughness to stick out the inning.
The team has been on a roll the last couple of games, and is still looking for new ways to succeed.