Lady Eagles land seven players on All-TVC teams
The 2015 Frankenmuth varsity softball season ended with a MHSAA semifinal loss in East Lansing and the loss of seven seniors.
The 2016 Lady Eagle squad grew up quickly, rallying around its three seniors and playing spirited softball. This year’s season ended in the MHSAA district title game and with a 22-17 record that is a bit deceiving.
FHS Coach Brad Walraven and his youthful team held its team banquet June 7 at Sullivan’s Black Forest Brew Haus & Grill. The Lady Eagles finished with a 22-17 overall record and 10-4 in the Tri-Valley Conference East Division, second place behind champion Millington. ‘Muth lost two to the Cardinals and had individual seventh inning losses to North Branch and Birch Run.
“We were 4-7 in one-run games. In four of those losses, the opposing team either tied or took the lead in the seventh inning against us,” Walraven said, who collected his 1,100 win earlier in the season. “If we close out those games with wins, then our record does not look that bad at 26-13. This is one area that we can improve on for next year, winning those close games.”
First-team All-TVC East Division players included senior Carmen Izzo, junior Hannah Karwat and freshmen Kaylee Kujat. Junior Laura Farnsworth earned second-team kudos and senior Ivy Holland, junior Megan Jarlock and junior Madison Jammer took home honorable mention status.
Jammer, Farnsworth, Karwat, Kujat and Izzo were selected to the All-District team and Kujat was also an All-Regional choice.
FHS started the season well, going into the last two weeks with a 19-9 record. The toughest part of the overall schedule came at that point and the Lady Eagles were 3-8.
“Unlike this past spring, when we had to replace seven graduating seniors, we will have to replace only three next spring,” Walraven said, listing Izzo,, Holland and Rocky Roy. rmen and Ivy mostly manned the outfield in centerfield and rightfield, respectively, while Rocky was a our second baseman. “
rmen had her best year offensively out of the four years with us. She had six homers, 40 RBIs and batted .325. Ivy batted .330 and Rocky was hurt most of the year and missed the first half of the year without practicing. She just did not have enough time to get back where she needed to be. This was after a good off-season of hitting but unfortunately she hurt her hand and that was a setback,” Walraven added.
On the mound, Jammer finished the season 15-11, tossing 145.3 innings, fanning 81 batters, walking 32 and ending with a 3.66 ERA. Farnsworth was 7-6 with one save. She pitched 84.3 innings, walking 58, striking out 25 and fashioning a 4.65 ERA.
The offensive leaders included Kujat with the following statistics: A .442 batting average, 50 hits, 46 runs scored,, 20 walks, 26 stolen bases and hit by a pitch seven times. She also recorded 43 singles while playing a very steady third base.
Other leaders included Karwat with 130 at-bats and 13 doubles, Farnsworth and Izzo with six home runs each, Farnsworth with 48 RBIs and Jarlock with 10 sacrifices. Several girls collected triples.
The rest of the team included junior Annie Matzke, sophomores Savannah Baker, Mya Bellinger, Abby Hare, Brianna Morse and freshmen Claire Breinager and Hannah Wenzel.
‘Muth had a signature win over the No. 2 ranked team in Division 3 – a 2-1 victory over Grosse Pointe University Liggett at the end of May. That team lost in the MHSAA quarterfinals.
“We made a lot of defensive plays this year, both in the infield and the outfield. Savannah was able to start at catcher which allowed us to move Megan, our previous starting catcher, to leftfield,” Walraven pointed out.
𠇊ll of our returning players gained a much needed year of varsity experience, so we have that to build on. Many of the girls will be playing summer ball and we will begin open hitting in the fall and throughout the winter,” Walraven noted.
At the banquet, Walraven took time to thank many people, including his coaching staff of Leon Wright, Tom Keller and Joe Chowaniec.
“They did a great job and allowed us to break down drills and isolate the techniques on more individual players,” Walraven said.
The coach with 37 years experience also thanked FSD’s maintenance man Mike Fresorger for keeping the field in tip-top shape and FHA Athletic Trainer Julie Felten 𠇏or keeping our athletes on the field.”
“I also want to acknowledge the support we received from the school, the athletic department, the FAA and our summer softball association,” Walraven concluded.
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