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This was to have been the season the Williamstown High School softball team was to have enjoyed.
Heading into his third season at the helm, Mark Wilhoit had high hopes for the Lady Demons, as he returned numerous upperclassmen and several talented underclassmen from a team that had finished second in the 32nd District the last two years.
Instead, the Lady Demons enter the final week of the regular season with a 9-20 record following a 4-1 loss at Owen County on May 12. Amanda Goodrich, a junior, was tagged with the loss.
"Amanda pitched well, but we had too many mental mistakes, didn't get runs we should have and we are not hitting the ball at all," Wilhoit said.
Of the 20 losses, five have been by five or fewer runs, but that is not what has Wilhoit upset.
"We're 9-20 when I feel like we should be 20-9. I am very surprised with how the season has gone. It's been trying for all of us, but maybe, we can get some momentum," Wilhoit said.
Williamstown travels to Notre Dame on Friday, May 16, before turning their attention to the Shelby County Lady Rocket Showcase on Saturday, May 17.
"We are playing harder, and we will continue to get after it," Wilhoit said.
Lady Braves look to pick up wins before season ends
Before the season began, Grant County High School's softball team had undergone a multitude of changes.
For starters, the Lady Braves said good-bye to coach Ott Reed and hello to current coach Marlin Gregg. In addition, Grant County saw a new Roy take over duties on the pitching mound as Kaitlyn Roy, a freshman, replaced her sister, Chelsea, who graduated.
For all the changes in personnel, the Lady Braves have played well, at times, according to Gregg, bringing an 8-18 record into this week.
However, since the calendar changed from April to May, Grant County has struggled, losing six of its last eight games.
Despite the losses, Gregg says he has seen improvement from his team.
"Overall, we have improved in certain areas, including our defensive play. We are getting more consistent play from our pitcher," Gregg said.
While the defense and pitching are improving, Gregg says the offense is "cold."
"We are inconsistent at the plate, and we need our bats to wake up," said Gregg, pointing to the fact that the Lady Braves have scored a total of five runs in their last three games. "If our upperclassmen can pick up the offense, our chances of getting wins are good."
Of their 18 losses, 14 have come by five runs or less.
"I thought we'd win a few more games, but we'll try to build momentum before the district tournament starts," Gregg said.
Grant County travels to Pendleton County for a 5:30 p.m. game on May 15 and will close out the regular season by hosting Carroll County at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, May 16.