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Lady Bulldogs Varsity Softball Begins Season with Mixed Bag

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Vicksburg softball infielders go through drills.

By Mari Smith

Wins and losses have marked the beginning of the season for the Lady Bulldogs varsity softball team.

The Bulldogs started their season with a conference game against the Chieftains of Dowagiac in a double header on April 16. Unfortunately, the Bulldogs fell to Dowagiac 4-7 and 3-5, with Amber Beal and Kayla Davenport, respectively, taking the losses on the mound.

Grabbing their first win wasn’t far off. On April 18, they clinched a double header against Comstock. They beat the Colts 3-2 with Davenport on the mound, who also had two hits in the game. With Beal pitching, the Bulldogs took the victory again 6-2.   Beal also contributed two hits, as did Morgan VanDeWoestyne.

The Otsego Invitational on April 19 started off with a loss but finished with two crushing wins. The lady Bulldogs lost to Northview in a close 10-8 game. But against Allegan, Vicksburg handed the Tigers a huge 19-4 loss.   Shaidan Knapp, Olivia Holmes and Rachel Peterman each had three hits, and the win was credited to pitcher Peterman.

The Bulldogs didn’t stop there but delivered a 15-5 loss to Holland with Beal on the mound. Knapp, Davenport, Savannah Johnson, VanDeWoestyne, and Jenna Fort each earned two hits.

On their home field, Vicksburg met conference opponent Edwardsburg . The Eddies overpowered the Bulldogs in a double header where Vicksburg took the loss in the first game after only five innings at 13-1. Fort hit a solo home run in the fourth inning to account for the only run of the game. In the second match-up, Knapp started off with a homerun in the first inning. Unfortunately, that would be the only run scored in that game for Vicksburg where they were hit with another big 14-1 casualty.

A double header with conference team Paw Paw, would end in a split between the Bulldogs and the Redskins.   Both games were very close, with Vicksburg taking one 5-4. Fort had three hits in that game, with Davenport earning two RBIs, and Beal as the winning pitcher.

The 5-6 Bulldog loss tallied up two hits by Holmes and two RBIs by Fort and Jones, and Davenport took the loss on the mound.   Caledonia handed Vicksburg an 8-0 shut-out with the only hits for the Bulldogs by Fort and Peterman, and Beal taking the loss for that game.

The Bulldogs came back to victory lane at the Gull Lake Invitational on April 26. The Bulldogs took a close one over Grant 12-10 with Davenport on the mound. Knapp was the shining star with three hits and five RBIs. Jessica Kelley and Grace Stock also had three hits and two RBIS, with Davenport and Fort adding two hits each, and Davenport as the winning pitcher.   At the Invitational, the Bulldogs also handed Wyoming Lee a huge 11-1 loss where Davenport took top honors with four hits and a whopping six RBIs. Knapp also racked up three hits and one RBI, Stock two hits and 2 RBIs, and Holmes had two hits. Beal added another victory to her record as well.

The team is coached by Paul Gephart with Ed Knapp as assistant coach.

Team members for the 2014 season are seniors Jenna Fort, Lexi Francisco, Savannah Johnson, Kristen Jones, Jessica Kelley and Rachel Peterman; juniors Amber Beal and Kayla Davenport; sophomore Olivia Holmes, and freshmen Shaidan Knapp, Grace Stock and Morgan VanDeWoestyne.

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