Close battle ends KF season

Published 9:11 pm Thursday, June 1, 2017

The Lady Bulldogs softball team ended its season with a disappointing loss to Powhatan High School in the 4A East semifinals.

The 2-1 loss was a tough one, since a win would have guaranteed them a bid to the state tournament.

Powhatan got on the scoreboard first off of a triple, but King’s Fork didn’t allow the game-winning run until the bottom of the seventh inning.

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Powhatan had a player on base as the pitch came. They hit a ball to right center, which led to a double. From there, Powhatan earned another hit that brought a runner home to seal the deal.

“The girls played their hearts out,” Lady Bulldogs coach Richard Froemel said. “We have played great softball the last four or five games. We hadn’t allowed many runs. Mentally, we were prepared. Those Bulldogs had fight in them, I can tell you that.”

King’s Fork had four hits on the day. Madison Froemel had three of the team’s four hits to go along with a double and a single.

“We all grew together and gelled together at the right time,” coach Froemel said. “At the beginning of the season, we lost to a highly ranked Hickory High School team 10-0. From there, people wouldn’t have thought we would make it this far, but we did.”

With King’s Fork having some productive seniors graduating, Froemel knows replacing them won’t be easy. For the players returning, Froemel has reiterated the process it takes for the team to get over the hump. Nonetheless, the seniors were proud of their team and happy to be a part of the process this year.

“My team had played lights out the last few games, and I could not be more proud of how we have been playing,” senior Lauryn Bailey said. “This season has been unforgettable. I loved playing with my team. They are a great group of girls, and it was awesome.”

“This is why we work out in the offseason, this is why we lift weights,” coach Froemel said. “This is why we play fall ball. The girls returning will know what it feels like now to reach this point.”

King’s Fork did have four players who made all-conference teams. Cali Hinnant was named to the first team at pitcher. Froemel made first team at third base. Bailey was named second team utility player. Mallory Moore made second team outfield. Dani Arzillo was named an honorable mention for King’s Fork.