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RHS: Softball
Hodag fastpitch holds off Hurley 2-1 in opener
By Student Writer - Connor Kuczmarski | Published: 04/27/2013

Rhinelander's Mara Meyer delivers the first pitch of the 2013 softball season Friday against Hurley at Pioneer Park. She allowed one run, scattered five hits and struck out seven in the victory. ( Photo By Bob Mainhardt )

     The weather finally allowed the Rhinelander High School softball team on the diamond.

Playing their first game nearly one month past their first scheduled appearance, rust appeared to hinder the Hodags at times. However, the team persevered to hang on to a 2-1 victory over the Hurley Midgets.

“We really saw a team effort today,” RHS softball coach Amanda Jorata said. “We obviously weren’t perfect, and we won’t be perfect for a while. But we showed how we can play as a team and even though we made a few errors we corrected ourselves and got the win out of it.”

     Both teams started slow as first game jitters and lack of outdoor practice time was a factor. Hodag pitcher Mara Meyer made short work of the Midgets early, going 1, 2, 3, in the top of the first inning.

The Hodags too, were silent early, before scoring two runs in the second inning. Meyer scored off an error at first base and Lexi Haug added an RBI single.

The Midgets would cut the deficit in half in the fifth inning off of a Kirkie Pecott two out base hit, but Hurley couldn’t close the distance.

Meyer was statistically dominant, giving up only five hits to seven strikeouts and a walk in the complete game victory. When prompted to highlight key players, Jorata explained her captains did a quality job ushering the team into the season.

“Mara is a senior this year and she performed great,” Jorata said. “I was just telling the seniors it is your first of your last and they did a really nice job. Our captains Sophie Schmidt, Mara Meyer, and Brianna Bozek did a nice job leading the girls tonight.”

Jorata noted that the lack of practice time hurt both teams, but commended Hurley and her own players on a competitive and positive performance.

“This is only our fourth day out on the field,” Jorata explained. “This is Hurley’s first time out on the field so both teams have done an awesome job showing their skills from all of the gym work they had to do. It’s hard being stuck in the gym, it’s just not the same. Both teams performed awesomely tonight.”

The Hodags notched five hits in the game — one a piece from Katie Berrell, Meyer, Emily Fortier, Kylie Hunter, and Haug.

With four sophomores on varsity and three in the starting batting order youthful talent meets veteran experience to forge a dynamic combination. Hunter, Megan Haug, Riley Aschenbrenner and Brianna Gilbert are the youngest players on varsity, while Haug, Aschenbrenner and Hunter already have a year of experience under their belts.

Jorata said she is not only excited about this season, but the potential for years to come.

“We have a great softball program here in Rhinelander,” Jorata said. “Coaches work with younger girls and it goes to show on our varsity team. We have a lot of talented younger players and that should lead to successful seasons in the next few years.”

The Hodags (1-0, 0-0 Great Northern) go right back to work Saturday in a doubleheader at Neenah. Jorata said at this point in the year it is still all a learning experience.

“Tomorrow we will still be testing the water,” she said. “I don’t know too much about Neenah but hopefully we can bat the ball around well and get two more wins.

Hodag Sports Library
05/30/2013 RHS softball team to hold youth camp Saturday
05/24/2013 Lady hurlers fall to SPASH in regionals
05/22/2013 Hodag fastpitch knocks off Wausau East
05/19/2013 Hodag Softball Sweeps Rapids, East Looms
05/18/2013 RHS softball to face Wausau East in regionals
05/17/2013 Meyer, Gilbert, Schmidt key doubleheader sweep of Ironwood
05/16/2013 Hodags down Tomahawk 12-0, take 2nd in GNC
05/15/2013 Hodag softball blasts Tomahawk 12-0 to finish second in GNC
05/15/2013 Meyer one-hits Tomahawk, Hodags win 8th straight
05/14/2013 Hodag fastpitch brooms Antigo

Open softball practice to begin Aug. 5 07/27/2013 There will be softball open practice for girls entering grades 6-12 at Pioneer Park starting Monday, Aug. 5. Sessions will run from 6 to 8 p.m. and continue on Monday nights as long as weather permits
Review: Hodag Hurlers solid in Jorata’s first year 06/12/2013 Entering the 2013 season as the reigning Great Northern Conference co-champions, the Rhinelander High School softball team had a lot to prove.

But the Hodags would have a new identity in 2013,
Meyer named RHS softball MVP 06/06/2013 The Rhinelander High School softball team handed out its awards Tuesday during a banquet at Hodag Lanes in Rhinelander.

Highlighting the list of winners was senior Mara Meyer, who was named the

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