ADAMS TOWNSHIP – They’ve waited a year for a rematch. And now they get it.
The Clinton-Massie softball has another shot at the legendary Greenville softball program 2 p.m. Wednesday in a Region 8 semifinal game at Mason High School.
The Lady Falcons are 24-4 while the Wave stands 26-5.
“I’m glad we get the second chance,” Clinton-Massie senior Kelsey Carter said. “Last year we were just not ready for that atmosphere.”
Greenville, its raucous fans and animated coach maybe unsettled Clinton-Massie even before the first pitch. The end result was a 14-4 GHS run-rule victory.
“We were just not ready for that atmosphere; we’d never been there before,” Carter said.
The Wave, on the other hand, counts on playing in late May each year. Greenville has been to the regional tournament four straight years, all while winning 108 games. In the past 15 years, Greenville has won 13 district championships, according to a story in the Greenville Daily Advocate.
“The atmosphere was something I never expected or even imagined,” said Claire Carruthers. “(Last year) was something completely different. It’s indescribable. We couldn’t even hear ourselves think.
“(This year) I hope our fan base comes … really comes so it can be equal on both sides.”
Ashlie Miller said knocking off Southwest Ohio’s softball giant would be a feather in the Falcons cap.
“This game on Wednesday is definitely a big road block,” said Miller. “Last year was unreal. I’m not one to get nervous but I was shaking in the batters’s box.”
This time around, the Greenville team is a bit different. Baylee Petry, the Wave pitcher who handcuffed Massie last season, won’t be on the mound this time around, CM coach Anthony Lauer said.
“The girl who pitched last year is hurt so all she does is bat, so the pitching is a little slower,” said Lauer. “Both of (Greenville’s) pitchers did a really good job of keeping Ross’s hitters off balance (in the district championship game). They do a really good job of hitting their spots.”
Lauer said patience at the plate will be key for his squad.
“Of all the games we’ve played this year, nothing against (Greenville) pitching, it’s going to be some of the slowest we’ve seen all year, but it’s still going to be good pitching,” said Lauer.
“That’s where my girls are going to have to be really disciplined, disciplined at the plate. Let the ball come to them. I’ve got really good hitters. They know the game. If they just take a deep breath and stop for just a minute, they can make that adjustment.”
Carter, the Massie leadoff hitter, is confident she and her teammates can make the necessary alterations at the plate.
“Usually it takes us all an at-bat to adust,” said Carter. “After about an inning, we adjust and get on base more. That’s one of our strong suits, being able to adjust.”
And, for the Lady Falcons, hitting is contagious.
“We have an excellent hitting team,” Miller said. “As soon as one person starts hitting, we’re all good to go. Everybody on our team can hit.”