No. 1-seeded Bobcats work, play hard to success
It’s hard to believe that at one point in the season, this Basehor-Linwood softball team lost two games in a row. The Bobcats’ 16-0 record since then (18-2 overall) is much more indicative of how this season has gone.
The Bobcats have steamrolled through their schedule, finishing the regular season by sweeping Turner in a doubleheader by a combined score of 34-0.
Though Turner has struggled this season, it showed that Basehor-Linwood is able to hit, which has been something of a weakness this year.
If anything, this team looks primed to avenge last year’s postseason exit by repeating 2010’s 4A state championship.
“This team is special,” coach Susan Mayberry said. “We are determined to accomplish the goal that we have set out to do, and that is to do the best that we can whenever we run onto the field.”
Mayberry stresses the game-by-game approach with her players, and it pays off. Basehor-Linwood has scored in bunches while shutting out opponents or, if not, allowing very few runs.
Ever since the second doubleheader of the season against Mill Valley, Basehor-Linwood has been this type of team. The Jaguars won both games in that meeting, the Bobcats’ first and only losses of the season. Unfortunately, because the Jaguars are a 5A school, there won’t be a postseason rematch.
The Bobcats begin the regional tournament at 5:45 p.m. on Monday against Perry-Lecompton at the Field of Dreams complex.
As far as individual players go, Mayberry didn’t think it was fair to single anyone out because this run was made possible with contributions from everyone.
If the Bobcats are going to take a shot at state, Mayberry said, every player and coach will have some role to play. That mentality helped put them in this position.
“We have a strong tradition and this group wants to leave their own mark, their own legacy,” Mayberry said. “The team wants to prove to themselves that they can do it.”
This group of girls has been together for a few years now, which is why the chemistry is so high.
Seniors Olivia Cowan, Hannah Tush, Kourtney Rist and Brooke Redmond were all part of the 2010 championship team and last year experienced loss together. That was when Girard beat Basehor-Linwood, 2-0, in the first round of the state tournament.
The team is preparing for regionals the same as it has all year and Mayberry said that this is most enjoyable part of the season. With the lofty expectations, the Bobcats don’t seem to feel it as pressure.
“We work hard and play hard,” Mayberry said. “We try to keep things in perspective. And, we have fun.”