Navarro remains in FHS’ path to state
Fredericksburg High School softball is headed to the regional finals for the first time since 2009.
The Billies won a best-ofthree game series against Rio Hondo Friday, May 17 and Saturday, May 18.
Rio Hondo beat the Billies in Game 1, 5-2, but FHS came back strong winning Game 2, 11-0, and Game 3, 4-2.
“We played a tough preseason schedule in hopes that it would pay off in key moments,” Hall said. “I feel that the tournaments from the beginning of the year helped us in this situation of losing a game and coming back to win the next game. We focused on the positive and knew it was possible to win two in a row.”
The Billies moved up three spots to No. 5 in the Texas Girls Coaches Association weekly state poll.
With the wins, the team will face Geronimo Navarro in a best-of-3 game series.
“These girls, especially the seniors, really want a chance to play in Austin for the state championship,” Hall said. “I am excited to get to continue the ride and watch them play.”
Game 1 was set for late Tuesday, May 21.
Game 2 is planned for 6:30 p.m. Thursday, May 23.
A third game will be played, if needed on Friday, May 24 at noon.
All games will be played at Dripping Springs High School. Full results can be found in the Fredericksburg Standard-Radio Post Daily Update.
The Billies lost Game 1 of the series, Friday, May 17, 5-2.
The pitcher for Rio Hondo, Erika Cortez, struck out eight batters in seven innings.
“She had a great game against us,” Hall said. “We were guessing at the plate too much. She really spun the ball well and as able to jam us on inside pitches, almost all night long. We didn’t adjust well either and didn’t have confidence when we stepped up to the plate.”
Three Rivers High School
Rio Hondo 5, FHS 2
FHS 000 002 0 — 2 3 0
RHHS 000 140 x — 5 8 0
Ready to make a comeback, the Billies started Game 2 strong, scoring three runs in as many innings.
“We had a new game plan coming into Game 2,” Hall said. “We knew that would most likely have Cortez pitching again so we knew we needed to make adjustments.”
In the first inning, the Billies led off with a bunt single, getting the momentum going. Mia Torres had a sacrifice hit to advance Madi Findley to second and Ashlyn Weinheimer came up big with a double to score.
In the fourth and fifth innings, the Billies scored eight runs, including homeruns from Weinheimer and Karlee Reyes.
Due to the mercy rule, the game came to a conclusion.
“It was all about speed on the bases and forcing the other team to throw us out,” Hall said. “Our offense used the small game to have big time hits and helped us win.”
A.C. Jones High School
FHS 11, Rio Hondo 0
RHHS 000 00x x — 0 7 5
FHS 111 44x x — 11 9 3
FHS and Rio Hondo took the series to three games on Saturday afternoon, with Billies coming out on top, 4-2.
“After Game 2, everyone was excited and ready for a third game, there was a sense of urgency and determination,” Hall said. “Game 3’s can be tough because you have the elation from Game 2 and now you have to start over from ground zero.”
The Billies selected Emery Boettcher to take the mound in the second inning.
“Ella started on the mound for us but she suffered in the first two innings so Emery had to step up and help lead the team for two games in a row,” Hall said.
Reyes was first to get the Billies on the board with a home run, giving the team a spark. At her remaining atbats, she was intentionally walked.
“It’s a huge compliment to Karlee that they were scared to pitch to her,” Hall said. “She was seeing the ball well and was able to hit on both the outside and inside so they didn’t know what to through her.”
In the fourth inning, Kate Wenzel hit a bunt down the first base line and the pitcher threw to first for the out. Hall believed the call was wrong and was granted the reversal. From there, the tone of the game changed and the Billies pushed their way to the top.
“I argued the call because I felt like she wasn’t anywhere close to being hit-the ball never changed it’s path and the bat was nowhere near the play,” she said. “I think the call being reversed took away some of Rio Hondo’s momentum because they had to come back on the field after feeling like the inning should have ended.”
A.C. Jones High School
FHS 4, Rio Hondo 2
FHS 011 100 1 — 4 5 2
RHHS 101 000 0 — 2 9 3
FHS will face the Navarro Geronimo Panthers in the regional finals.
Navarro comes from District 30-4A, where they ended their district season undefeated and are 34-8 overall.
They are coached by Darrell Harborth.
The Texas Girls Coaches Association ranked the Panthers at No. 8 in the weekly polls.
The Panthers beat Carrizo Springs 15-0 to advance to area. In area, they played a three-game set against Beeville Jones and won 2-1.
In the regional quarterfinals, the Panthers beat Zapata in a two-game set.
The Panthers then beat Boerne in the regional semifinals 2-1.
“They have a good hitting team and are going to try and outscore their opponent,” Hall said. “They work on getting ground balls to the infield to make outs so we want to be able to go with those pitches and square them up.”
Alexis Valdez leads the team on the mound.
“She is a good drop ball pitcher who is going to try and work the ball down and away from the majority of our batters,” Hall said.