Maryland Stars travel

The Maryland Stars 16-U Black girls fastpitch feam captured the 2011 ASA Maryland State Championship with an 8-1 record June 11-12 at Fairland Park. In a display of endurance and tenacity, the Stars came out of the loser's bracket to win five straight games over the course of 14 hours on Sunday, including back-to-back victories over the Olney Cougars to take the championship.

In the thrilling finale, down, 2–0, in the bottom of the sixth inning, Sam Speierman (Hammond) led off with a single to get things rolling. Mandy Bendix (Glenelg, .333 average for the weekend, 6 doubles, 5 RBIs) hit a sharp single to right field to advance Speierman. Unfortunately, Speierman was forced out on a fielder's choice with the next batter, Rae Harrison.

Ronnie Rittie then pushed Bendix across home plate with a sacrfice to score one run. With 2 outs and Harrison on second, Hannah Force( Hammond, 321 average. for the weekend, 3 doubles, 7 RBIs) crushed a 1-0 pitch over the left field fence for the two-run home run to put the Stars on top for good.


Submit a Letter to the Editor for the Laurel Leader, Columbia Flier and Howard County Times

Pitcher Tori Sobota (5 wins on the weekend) closed down the Cougars in the seventh to secure the win for the Stars.

Stellar infield defense was provided by Megan Tracey, Bendix, Rittie and Force all weekend, including a 4-6-3 double play connecting Bendix, Tracey and Force. The Stars outfield of Kara Misner, Devan Puhl, Julia Grimes, and Speierman, who also pitched three wins and hit over .400 in the tournament, all made outstanding plays throughout the weekend.

From behind the plate, Harrison guided the pitchers through the tournament, catching all nine games.

May 14, the Stars placed second in the Maryland Stars Spring Sparkler tournament.

WHC Fever travel

The WHC Fever '98 girls fastpitch team continues to roll. Last weekend, Fever '98 placed second in the ASA Maryland State Championships, battling through 8 games in two days, five in a row on Sunday, to get to the championship final. The team showed incredible heart and outstanding spirit by battling back through the losers' bracket after losing the first game of the day on Sunday.

The success during the state championships can be attributed to outstanding hitting by Casey Magersupp, Brooke Tomalty, Meghan Jacobs, Alex Cisar, Carly Clarke and Stephanie Bluhm. In the field, Miranda Thompson, Kiley Sweeney and Emily Dowdall caught everything hit their way.

Lexi Trail and Emily Fitzsimmons were on fire on the mound shutting down opposing hitters and keeping them off balance the entire weekend. The team has been plagued by injury and illness the past few weeks and would love to have had a shot in the final game with a healthy squad.

The WHC Fever '98 has played eight tournaments so far this year, capturing first place twice and placing second three times while compiling a 31-10 record.