The student news site of The Harker School.

Harker Aquila

The student news site of The Harker School.

Harker Aquila

The student news site of The Harker School.

Harker Aquila

Winged Post

Varsity softball team dominates James Lick 11-3 in season opener

Tiffany Zhu
Pitcher Raeanne Li (9) lunges in preparation to throw a pitch in the first inning. Raeanne pitched for the first four innings, and Joy Hu (10) pitched for the last inning.

The varsity softball team defeated James Lick High School 11-3 at Blackford on Feb. 28. 

The first inning commenced with pitcher and shortstop Raeanne Li (9) pitching and catcher Maddie Avila (9) behind the plate. Raeanne’s pitches successfully struck three Comets out before they made any runs. Center field and second base Grace Fu (9) then stepped up as the first Eagle to bat. Grace and Maddie ran to home plate during the first inning, putting Harker in the lead 2-0. 

In the second inning, a passing sequence from Maddie to Raeanne to first base Isha Kotalwar (12) resulted in a Comet thrown out at first base, ending the Comets’ offensive stretch. After the Eagles returned to the batter’s box, shortstop and pitcher Joy Hu (10) stepped up when all the bases were loaded, and her hit drove in three runs for the Eagles. Raeanne’s mother Lilian Zheng commended the team for their cooperation in the first two innings. 

“They are playing so well as a team,” Zheng said. “They came together, and everyone is contributing. It’s very exciting because this is the first time they have a team in three years, and everyone is really making great efforts.”

Raeanne again struck out three Comets without conceding a single run in the third inning. Right field Michael Harley’s (10) hit cleared two bases, and third base Selena Chen’s (9) hit followed suit, sending Michael home. Grace then hit a home run, scoring an additional two runs for Harker. Harker widened their lead to 11-0 at the end of the inning. 

In the fourth inning, Isha’s hit sent the Comets scrambling for the ball as she ran to third base. Although high school softball games standardly last seven innings, the Eagles’ early lead called for a five-inning game. Joy then stepped up to pitch for the Eagles in the final inning. Three Comets managed to score, and the game concluded with the Eagles leading 11-3. 

This match marked the first softball or high school sports game for many of the players as nine underclassmen currently make up the majority of the 12 player team. Head coach Raul Rios praised the players’ progress since their first practice two weeks ago. 

“I wasn’t sure what to expect because we have a lot of young players,” Rios said. “But they’re working really hard and learning, and we did really good. They went out there, and they showed a lot of energy. They played hard all the way through and hustled.”

Frosh Grace Fu sprints to third base during the game against James Lick. Grace hit a home run in the third inning. (Tiffany Zhu)

Grace noted that the encouragement and cheers from her teammates off the diamond contributed to their successful win. 

“I love the spirit everyone has, and it’ll only get better from here,” Grace said. “I hope this season we keep the spirit we have, and as long as we have the energy and support we have today, then we can do it.”

The team currently holds a 1-0 record and plays Castilleja next on Mar. 12. 

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Tiffany Zhu
Tiffany Zhu, Reporter
Tiffany Zhu (10) is a reporter for Harker Aquila, and this is her second year on staff. This year, Tiffany hopes to meet more members of the Harker and journalism community and share topics she's passionate about with them. In her free time, she enjoys baking and watching all genres of movies.

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