Rockets capture gold and silver at softball tournament

Rockets capture gold and silver at softball tournament
Submitted

Rockets Maroon poses with their gold medals and plaque.

                        

The Rockets participated in their first state softball tournament since 2018. After missing out on a chance at a title in 2019 and a suspension of all activities last season, the Rockets were ready to take the field and play the game.

Unlike 2018 when they captured the Div. III state title, the Rockets competed in both Div. II and Coach Pitch this year. They won their semi-final games to make it to the championship rounds in their respective divisions.

The Coach Pitch team kicked their tournament off with a game against Wood County. After an explosive first inning, the Rockets led 16-3. Wood County rallied back and brought the score within one. Logan Wise scored on a hit by Skylar Markley in the fourth inning to clinch the 17-15 win for the Rockets.

In the championship game, the Rockets battled a former Div. III state silver medalist. They held a 3-1 lead through the first inning before Ashtabula pulled away in a tough battle for the win. The Rockets were led by Lucy Cooper, Skylar Markley and Austin McClain.

For their efforts, the Rockets Coach Pitch team (Rockets Silver) came home with silver medals and as the state runner-up. Team members included Dolly Alsept, Heather Baker, Cooper, Jason Fickes, Joey Fulton, Chelsea Lefler, Kitanna Levengood, Elizabeth Lippencott, Markley, Samantha Mastroine, Aidan McClain, McClain, Miranda Milburn, Micah Pahls and Wise. Coaches for the season were Angelica Mendoza, Sharlyn Miller, Zach Niven and Rachel Paden.

The Div. II team (Rockets Maroon) kicked their tournament off with a commanding win (23-2) against Darke County Warriors. Deric Johnson and Hunter Markley led with three RBIs each. Easton Dillon and Matthew Medley each added in-the-park home runs to boost the score. Johnson went the distance on the mound for the Rockets.

In the championship game, the Rockets trailed 1-0 after the first inning. With a huge hit from Alex Adkins, the momentum shifted, and the Rockets started to rally. That was followed by a strong defensive play by Jason “Batman” Murray at second, and the Rockets emerged victorious with a score of 11-3.

For their efforts, the Rockets brought home gold medals. Team members included Adkins, Cayden Ciekanski, Kadyn Cook-Linamen, Jim Craft, Dillon, Steven Hazelip, Johnson, Markley, Medley, Murray, Rachael Russell and Cody Thornton. Rockets Maroon was coached by Shawn Ciekanski and Patrick Dillon.

The state tournament was hosted by Special Olympics Ohio and held at Sandusky Sport Force Parks. Over 40 teams from across the state of Ohio competed in the three-day event. The Rockets prepare now to participate in flag football, with their first home game being held at Strasburg’s stadium on Sept. 21 at 6 p.m.


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