Regional preview: Brandywine set to face Bronson againPublished 12:51pm Friday, June 7, 2013
A youth movement has helped the Brandywine softball team reached the Division 3 Regional finals.
The Bobcats (29-10) will face Bronson (32-4) in the second semifinal at Centreville High School at noon Saturday.
In the opening game, Parchment (26-8) will face Hartford (16-7) at 10 a.m. The championship game is slated for noon.
Brandywine has faced two out of the four teams in the regional. The Bobcats split with Hartford, winning 14-0 and losing 10-0. They also split with Bronson, losing 10-0 and winning 6-5. The Bobcats committed seven errors in the first game loss to the Vikings.
“Bronson is going to be a tough team, they have a strong program with good pitching,” Brandywine coach Angela Mellott said. “In order to win the regional we will need to play tough defense, execute with runners on and play the game we are capable of. As a team, we know we have no pressure so we are going into Saturday relaxed and just playing the game. We are just going to take it one game at a time.”
Mellott, who took over the program in 2009, has battled with rebuilding the once proud tradition of the Bobcats. Her first season, Brandywine went 11-28. Since then, the Bobcats have been on an uphill climb to restoring the team back to a conference champion and a team that can make a run in the post season.
Mellott has done that with three freshmen and three sophomores in the starting line-up. Those six players have contributed plenty in helping the Bobcats win 29 games.
While the team is built on youth, it’s the veteran leadership at the battery (pitcher and catcher) that have helped glue this team together.
Senior Mikayla Kemp is 21-8 in the circle with an ERA of 1.73. He also is one of the team’s top hitters with an average of .340. She also has six home runs and 24 RBIs. Ort is hitting .278.
Freshmen twins Michaela and McKenna Hartline help anchor the Bobcats up the middle in center field and shortstop respectively. Freshman Sydney Carlson plays first base for Brandywine. All three have already tasted success this season playing on either the Bobcats’ volleyball or basketball teams.
Michaela Hartline is hitting .447 with 37 RBIs and Makenna Hartline .333 with 30 RBIs.
Sophomores Kelly Harper and Justine Sater play third and second for Brandywine. Harper leads the team in batting average (.505), home runs (11) and RBIs (47). Sater is hitting .370.
Ayralynn Lasane is third member of the sophomore class. She played outfield for the Bobcats.