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Inside The Circle – Softball Week 7 Preview

GlennFrazerHeadlines, Sports

a baseball player pitching a ball on a field

Savannah Laird pitching for Appoquinimink Softball, photo courtesy of Jack Pie

The top 6 in our rankings all won last week. The only change in the top 10 is at the bottom as teams battle for conference titles and a spot in the 24-team field for the DIAA state tournament that is scheduled to begin May 17th.

1 No. Appoquinimink (13-0) is the only unbeaten program in the Top 10. Last week the Jags did not allow a single run in three wins against HVT (13-0), Mount Pleasant (15-0) and Concord (13-0).  Savannah Laird and Ayla McCathern combined for 34 strikeouts and held all 3 teams hitless. The offense collected 46 hits last week. With only 5 games left in the regular season, Appo will face SGT Tuesday, then will be featured in a 1-vs-2 game at Caravel Thursday night at 7:00 in a game that will be streamed live on Delaware Live-302 Sports.

No. 2 Caravel (9-1) The Buccaneers hold on to the 2nd spot with a 9-6 win last week over Newark Charter. Veronica Diomede collected 5 RBI’s in that win. The Bucs face DMA Tuesday at Midway prior to the Thursday night showdown with Appo. Caravel will finish the week with HVT Friday and Cape Saturday.

No. 3 Sussex Central (11-2) The Golden Knights picked up two wins last week in close games with Lake Forest (7-4) and No. 7 Caesar Rodney (6-4). Kate Evick and Mya Jones each had 3 hits in the win against Lake. Evick hit 2 homers and drove in 4 in that win. Against Henlopen-North rival CR, the Golden Knights scored 3 runs in the top of the 7th and held off a Riders rally. Central will face Sussex Tech and Smyrna this week.

No. 4 DMA (10-1) The “Hawks” were road warriors last week, gaining victories at MOT Charter (18-0), Concord (17-4) and St. Mark’s (8-4). DMA came from behind to get the win over the Spartans as St. Mark’s held a 4-1 lead after 4 innings. The Hawk’s bats were hot last week with 43 hits in the three games. This week DMA hosts #2 Caravel at Midway on Tuesday, then hits the road again with games at Newark Charter Thursday, and No. 9 Laurel Saturday.

No. 5 RLCA (9-1) The Lady Lions won a couple of close games last week, 6-4 against Conrad, and 5-3 over William Penn. Conrad held a 3-1 advantage until the bottom of the 6th inning. With 2 outs and the bases full, Alayna Griffing belted a grand slam to give RLCA the lead. Against the Colonials, the Lions took a 5-0 lead into the bottom of the 7th and held on for the “W”. This week features games with Dover, Archmere, and Polytech.

No. 6 Middletown (10-2) The Cavaliers picked up 3 wins last week, a 14-0 shut-out of Delcastle, a 10-0 win against SGT, and a 5-1 win over Charter of Wilmington. The Cavs pitching staff allowed just 5 hits in the three games. Maddy Hackett had a hot bat with 2 triples in the Delcastle game and a 3-run “dinger” against SGT. Middletown will face William Penn, Padua and Conrad this week.

No. 7 Caesar Rodney (12-2) The Riders moved up one spot after gaining wins over Woodbridge and Newark Charter, sandwiched around a tough loss to No. 3 Sussex Central. The Riders went 13 innings to get the win at Newark Charter Saturday. The game was tied at five with CR batting in the top of the thirteenth as Ashlyn Schmidt hammered a “key” triple – scoring Maggie McCarthy and Vanessa Gaines. Peyton Shields piched all 13 innings, allowing three runs on 11 hits and striking out 23. CR will host Smyrna tomorrow and face Dover on Thursday.

No. 8 St. Mark’s (9-4) The Spartans blanked Gloucester (NJ) 10-0, held off a 7th inning rally by Charter of Wilmington in a 7-4 win and finished the week with the loss to No. 4 DMA 8-4. St. Mark’s will face Padua, Concord and Brandywine this week.

No. 9 Laurel (9-4) The Laurel Bulldogs return to the top 10 with impressive wins recently over No. 3 Sussex Central and Smyrna. However it will be a tough week for the ‘dogs as they try to hold onto that spot in the rankings. Laurel faces a tough Lake team on the road, before hosting another tough Henlopen-South squad from Indian River. They close out the week Saturday, with a home game against No. 4 DMA. 

No. 10 Delmarva Christian (6-3) The Royals have played just once since April 14th and that was an 8-0 win over Dover (4-6) last week. Their season-opening win over No. 3 Sussex Central keeps them in the top 10 for now. There are several teams like Delmar, Conrad, Indian River, and others that are knocking on the door for that 10th spot.

Only two weeks left in the regular season and it’s shaping up to be a “wide-open” tournament.

That’s it for this edition of “Inside The Circle”

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