Depth Leading Quince Orchard to Winning Season
One year removed from being a promising young side that recorded nine wins, the Cougars have been excelling on the softball diamond in 2016. Quince Orchard is 8-2, and currently riding a four game winning streak.
The team's two losses have come against the 2015 MPSSAA 4A state champion, Sherwood, and the 2015 MPSSAA 4A state runner-up, Northwest.
"It's always nice to start off a season on a winning note, but more importantly we've started out strong, played our game and played a clean game," Quince Orchard's head coach Colleen Adams said. "We knew coming into this season we would have a tough start to our schedule seeing the defending state champions and defending state runners-ups, but we wanted to continue to play our game and adjust as we played different teams."
The Cougars have been winning because of their deep roster. Adams said this is the first time she can say everyone on her roster has contributed at one point already in a season.
The team's depth was on display in the team's most recent win, a 5-4 decision against Clarksburg. The bottom of the order recorded six of the team's nine hits, accounted for all the RBI's the team had, and three of the five runs that scored.
The team is hitting .309 as a group, but has been led by dynamic leadoff hitter Gina Wingate and her .552 batting average. Wingate has already had two games this year in which she has gone 4-for-4 at the plate. Joining her in batting over .300 is Morgan Kuiper (.364), Sydney Maxwell (.320), Lauryn Graham (.318) and Nicole Beisner (.304).
"Patience and adjustment have been our strengths. We have done a great job of adjusting to different pitchers and do a great job from game to game," Adams said. "Within a game, we're being patient at the plate, adjusting to what pitches we are getting, and hitting them where we can."
The team is also deep on the mound. All three of Quince Orchard's pitchers have recorded multiple wins, with Beisner's 4-0 mark leading the group. Katie Lee is 2-0, while Maxwell, who pitched well in Quince Orchard's losses, sits at 2-2.
The group's defense has also been strong. In the infield, Wingate has been the leader at shortstop, while Alissa Satterfield has led the outfield from centerfield.
Looking ahead, the Cougars have two more division games against Gaithersburg and Kennedy before facing other opponents from around Montgomery County. It should provide a good test for the Cougars, who are hoping to make some noise in the postseason.
"Our goals are to keep playing very clean ball and keeping ourselves in every game. The great part, and sometimes the bad part, about softball is that at any time anything can change and momentum can swing," Adams said. "I expect that we'll be in every game, give ourselves a chance to win every game, and then make a good run in the playoffs."
|April 19th, 2016||By: Wick Eisenberg|