The Duncan Banner


March 13, 2013

Eagles hope experience leads to wins

WAURIKA — Slowpitch softball is a sport that puts a premium on defense and hitting — which makes Ivy Fitzgerald think Waurika could raise a little ruckus in the 2013 season.

“The strategy in slowpitch is to score and to play good defense,” Fitzgerald said, as the Lady Eagles were getting a final polish before opening the campaign Monday by splitting a pair of games with Geronimo, losing 15-1 and winning 15-6.

“I think we’ll be pretty solid on defense, and we’ve had some players who’ve been striking the ball good in practices. We could have a pretty good season.”

Fitzgerald can base some of that optimism on a roster loaded with experienced players. The core from Waurika’s fastpitch team is also playing slowpitch, with the veterans coming off a 18-17-1 fall season that set a program standard for most wins in a single season.

Some of those players find themselves in different positions than they played in fastpitch, but that’s were the defensive strategy comes into play.

Although senior Staci Brandon was a standout shortstop in fastpitch, she’s taking her athleticism to center field for slow pitch. The four-year fastpitch starter joins an outfield that includes junior left fielder Karrington Morris and sophomore rover Kianah Swift.

Morris is WHS’ No. 1 pitcher in fastpitch, but has the athletic skills to be very effective in the outfield, while the youngest of the two Swift sisters also has quickness and experience.

Right field could feature a rotation of sophomore Kylie Richardson, freshmen Kristan Phillips and Sancey Barton, and senior Cara Sampley, who is playing high school ball for the first time.

Moving Brandon to the outfield also allows the Lady Eagles to prepare junior Courtland Henderson to take over Brandon’s spot at shortstop, which will be a key when the fastpitch season arrives.

“Having Staci in the outfield will help us there. She’s got a lot of speed, and it gives Courtland a chance to get some shortstop experience there for fall,” Fitzgerald said. “Having Karrington in left field will also help us.

“Kianah played in the outfield last fall, so I think our outfield will be pretty good.”

Junior Kirstin Berthiaume, who is Waurika’s No. 2 fastpitch pitcher, will spend most of her time at first base in the spring. Fitzgerald hopes freshman Laken Forsyth can handle the bulk of the pitching chores.

The Lady Eagles skipper said summer and fall fastpitch is a motive to keep Morris and Berthiaume at defensive positions in slowpitch.

“Because of the difference in pitching motion, it could create bad habits for fastpitch for Karrington and Kirstin to pitch slowpitch,” Fitzgerald noted. “Laken’s younger and has been practicing (slowpitch delivery), and she’s doing a good job of getting the ball in the strike zone.”

A pair of seniors will start at the other two infield positions. Savanna Mathews became a solid player for the Lady Eagles in the 2012 fall season and will be at second base, while Reyna Swift shifts from behind the plate in the fall to third for slowpitch.

The older Swift sister began her WHS career at third. She moved behind the plate as a sophomore but is going back to third, which will cause less wear on a right knee that was injured in basketball season.

Reyna Swift was the Most Valuable Player in the Southern Eight Conference following the fastpitch season, during which she hit what’s believed to be a program record for home runs in a single season.

With Swift at third, sophomore Megan Waid will draw the catching nod for the slowpitch season.

Text Only
  • Stars align Big names featured at wrestling camp

    Kids were lining up for autographs from Oklahoma assistant wrestling coach Michael Lightner, after Marlow’s wrestling camp Tuesday.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Williams Demon softball starts preseason

    Last year, Duncan softball came close.
    This year, coach Robert Cowan has made it clear close will not be good enough.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Duncan well represented at Hoedebeck tournament

    The Duncan Golf and Tennis Club will host 60 players, 10 of which are in the Duncan Public School system, in its Hoedebeck Memorial Junior Tournament Wednesday through Thursday.

    July 23, 2014

  • Playoff hopes on Oklahoma’s mind at Big 12 media day

    High expectations are always chained to Oklahoma both internally and among its massive fan base.
    However, the Sooners enter the 2014 season as a consensus pick to reach the first College Football Playoff. For once, all expectations mesh.

    July 23, 2014

  • Former OSU line coach having impact at UT

    It was quite possibly the biggest coaching coup of the offseason and Oklahoma State was at the wrong end of it – former Cowboy offensive line coach Joe Wickline joining the staff for Charlie Strong's Texas Longhorns.

    July 23, 2014

  • In the middle of it Demons return from camp energized

    Duncan volleyball returned to practice with a spring in its step Monday, despite not being on their own gym floor.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Defensive showcase Comanche’s defense strengthens

    Everyone around the Indian program (even one Outlaw) points out how far the softball team has come, but nothing is more evident then the improvement on defense.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rory McIlroy wins British Open for 3rd major

    Walking off the 18th green as the British Open champion, Rory McIlroy kept gazing at all the greats on golf's oldest trophy.

    On the claret jug, his name is etched in silver below Phil Mickelson.

    In the record book, he is listed behind Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods as the youngest to get three legs of the career Grand Slam.

    And over four days at Royal Liverpool, he had no equal.

    July 20, 2014

  • Watkins wins Watkins shines in Duncan tennis tournament

    Freshman Addie Watkins didn’t let playing older opponents deter her from winning the 16-year-old girls division at the Duncan First Bank Jr. Challenger Tournament Friday.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • McKelvey named Banner sports editor

    Assistant Sports Editor John McKelvey has been promoted to sports editor of The Duncan Banner.

    July 20, 2014

Featured Ads
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Dozens Feared Dead Republicans Hold a Hearing on IRS Lost Emails Raw: Mourners Gather As MH17 Bodies Transported Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-free Travel Raw: MH17 Bodies Arrive in Netherlands Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion Last Mass Lynching in U.S. Remains Unsolved Home-sharing Programs Help Seniors Ex-NYC Mayor: US Should Allow Flights to Israel Clinton: "AIDS-Free Generation Within Our Reach" Judge Ponders Overturning Colo. Gay Marriage Ban Airlines Halt Travel to Israel Amid Violence VA Nominee McDonald Goes Before Congress US Official: Most Migrant Children to Be Removed Police Probing Brooklyn Bridge Flag Switch CDC Head Concerned About a Post-antibiotic Era Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball

Should the date for The World's Largest Garage Sale be changed from the third weekend in July to sometime in October to take advantage of cooler weather like we had this past weekend?

No. It's better in the summer cause kids are out of school.
Yes. More shoppers would come during nice fall weather.
Either time is fine.

     View Results