The West Portsmouth 9/10s little league softball team finished their season at the state tournament Tuesday evening in a loss to host team Tallmadge by a final score of 8-1.
West could not get their bats going against Tallmadge, an issue that came up in their loss previously in the week to Canfield but was not an issue in their two wins over Ashtabula and fellow District 11 team Symmes Valley.
In addition to the bats not being there for West, they were not able to keep the runners off the base for Tallmadge. This is something they were fairly successful in doing in their other loss of the tournament Sunday morning against tournament favorite, Canfield. “We had a very very tight strike zone” said West head coach Brandon Entler, “I’m not trying to make excuses, but I knew that coming in and playing Tallmadge on their field we weren’t going to get any calls.”
Entler could not be prouder of his group of girls and the effort and fight they showed on the diamond. “It was a good season, the girls played hard” said Entler, “We look forward to coming back next season.”
West will finish the state tournament as the fourth place team, behind the three remaining schools of Tallmadge, Canfield, and Austintown.
Although they were not able to win the state championship like the 11U team in which they share their namesake, the girls from West represented their school and community exceptionally well.
The future of area softball in Scioto county is very bright, when you factor in the two West teams and their successes this postseason, and also the Wheelersburg little league softball team who won the Central Region tournament Friday and punched their ticket to the Little League Softball World Series. “It’s a rivalry between us and them” said Entler, “We’re rooting for them when they’re playing teams from all over the world. It’s pushing us, we’re pushing them. That’s what you’ve got to have, it’s making both of us better. You can’t just go out and go through the motions, you’ve got to push yourself.”
Entler said his group of girls will take about a month off after this season before they begin playing fall softball in early September.
Reach Jacob Smith at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT