BRATTLEBORO -- With just three practices under their belt, the Brattleboro Heat hosted a 25-team softball tournament over the weekend.
"We have one new player and four others that were off at college," said Brattleboro 18u coach Al Wood. "We were a little rusty at the start, but then we settled in. I thought we got a lot better as the tournament went along. I was happy with our progress."
Wood’s team went 1-3 over the weekend, including a 9-3 victory over the Valley Dragons of Penacook, N.H. They lost twice to Braintree Blue Diamond and also fell to a team from Southern Maine.
Newcomer Caitlyn Arellano had a team-high five hits for the 18u Heat over their four games. Kayla Wood followed with four hits, while Rissa Smith and McKenzie Bover added three apiece. Smith’s three-run homer was the offensive highlight, while Bover also appeared to have went deep -- but it was called a ground-rule double.
"She got all of it," said the Heat coach of Bover’s hit. "Smith hit that ball hard. It was sweet."
Kayla Wood, who has pitched the BUHS softball team to a pair of state titles, went 1-1 in 9 2/3 innings of work and fanned 13 batters. Heather Sanborn sat down three in 5 1/3 innings, while center fielder Melissa Gordon, left fielder Ashley Watson and third baseman Taylor Kerylow all made a fine defensive play.
Also on the 18u team are Shelby Yee, Cassie Rawson, Ali Koskoris and Kelsey Patterson. They will
Brattleboro’s 16u team went 1-2 overall this past weekend, including a 7-6 victory over Vermont Pride.
"We hit the ball really well and we ran the bases great," said Heat coach Andy Courchesne, who is assisted by Mark Bodin.
In one game, the Heat got back-to-back-to-back triples by Sierra Butler, Hannah Farrow and Sara Bradley. Kate Rooney had a team-high three hits, Jenna Yee drove in four runs and Green Mountain ace Stephanie Knockenhauer picked up the win versus the Pride.
The 14u Heat went 0-3, but the team got solid defensive play from shortstop Jordan Gouger, outfielder Brooke Willey and outfielder Jamie Mahoney. Callista Pollidor struck out five in two innings of relief.
"Brooke had an amazing tournament. She played hard every minute," said 14u coach Elizabeth O’Conner. "Sarah Forsaith played really well in the field and at bat. She had some crucial bunts when we needed them."
Brattleboro’s 14u and 16u teams will compete in the Paul Wilcox Memorial Tournament in Keene, N.H, July 6-8.