Softball tourney preview: 3rd edition

By Jacob Smith -

South Webster begins their postseason run tonight when hosting Trimble.

South Webster begins their postseason run tonight when hosting Trimble.

File photo

Paint Valley @ Clay

After wrapping up their 2019 regular season Tuesday vs. Green, Clay begins their postseason run with a home sectional final against Paint Valley.

Paint Valley earned a 10-3 road sectional final win over New Boston Monday to get the chance to play the Panthers in the sectional final round.

Clay is senior heavy with two ace pitchers that give you a variety of looks, much more so than other Division IV teams in the sectional stage. Batters one through nine in their lineup will give opposing teams all sorts of trouble as they have their SOC I and non-league opponents all season. If Clay plays and executes how they have all season, they’ll likely punch their ticket to the district tournament at Rio Grande University next week.

Green @ Manchester

Green is coming off of a 13-0 sectional semifinal win Monday over Western and will have a quick turnaround as they travel to Manchester for their sectional final contest.

Manchester is a Division IV team with plenty of impressive Division III and IV results. In a six day span last week and the week prior, Manchester earned two victories over two SOC II Division III opponents: Minford and West both by one run (West 3-2, Minford 2-1). Manchester also earned a win over Portsmouth during the first week of the regular season and a four run loss to Notre Dame on April 29th.

Bobcats head coach Shane Jenkins believes that anytime his pitching and defense shows up, his team will be in the game until the very end. Those two key components, as well as the Bobcats variety of offensive weapons, help give Green just as good of a shot as any to claim a sectional title Thursday and advance to district tournament play.

Whiteoak @ Notre Dame

After defeating East 15-4 on Monday, the Whiteoak Wildcats will travel to Portsmouth for their sectional semifinal game against Division IV power Notre Dame.

Thursday’s game against Whiteoak will be the Titans first game since Tuesday April 30th when Cassie Schaefer pitched a perfect game in the Titans 20-0 victory over SOC I foe Eastern.

Anytime Schaefer, or Isabel Cassidy for that matter, is on the mound, the Titans are going to have a chance to win any game. If those two showcase their abilities on the mound and the supporting cast of Titans give them support as they have all season long, the Titans have an excellent chance to make another deep run in postseason play.

Trimble @ South Webster

South Webster will host their sectional final game Thursday vs. six seeded Glouster Trimble after the Tomcats defeated Corning Miller 8-5 in their sectional semifinal contest.

After a grueling Division III and Division IV slate, South Webster will begin their Division IV postseason run with a chance to earn a spot in the district tournament following a win over Trimble Thursday.

Assuming ace Gwen Messer gets the start for the Jeeps (a safe assumption), the Jeeps will position themselves nicely to earn a spot in next week’s Division IV district tournament. The bats of Emma Bailey and Baylee Cox will also be a big factor if the Jeeps hope to make a deep postseason push under head coach Andy Messer.

Valley @ Peebles

Valley, following their 12-1 road win over six seeded Ironton St. Joe, will travel to Peebles to face the third seeded Indians with a sectional title on the line.

Peebles is a strong team, by all measures. In the SHAC, the Indians finished second to Division III Fairfield (a two seed in the Division III sectional draw) after falling to the Lions in their two head to head matchups by results of 5-0 and 5-1 respectively.

After an impressive sectional semifinal win, the Indians will have a tall task on their hands if they wish to advance to the district tournament once again. If they wish to accomplish that feat, they’ll need a stellar game in all phases of the game, something possible for Monty Spriggs’ Indians squad.

South Webster begins their postseason run tonight when hosting Trimble. Webster begins their postseason run tonight when hosting Trimble. File photo

By Jacob Smith

© 2019 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved

© 2019 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved