State softball tourney begins

VIENNA – The West Virginia State Softball Tournament gets underway today in Vienna. Locally, Petersburg (23-5) will face Herbert Hoover (29-6) in Class AA and Moorefield (23-6) will take on Buffalo (26-7) in Class A.

Petersburg is expected to play at noon. The Vikings anticipate sending Marley Thompson to the mound. So far this season, she’s 14-3 with 108 strike outs in 103 innings pitched. She also has only given up 17 walks.

“She is by far our most experienced pitcher,” PHS coach Dwayne Hedrick said. “She throws a variety of pitches. We liked to mix it up, but if we find something that’s working, we will use it.”

Brittany Bible will play first base for Petersburg. She’s batting .475 with four home runs and 28 RBIs.

“She could have easily hit double digits in home runs,” Hedrick said. “She’s had a lot of balls hit the fence or pull foul. She’s got plenty of power and she’s been very effective for us.”

Freshman Callie Wisnewski leads the team in home runs. She’s batting .375 with six round-trippers.

“We knew she had potential coming in,” Hedrick said. “She’s earned the right to start. She also plays a solid third base. She’s got a strong arm.”

Shortstop Cassidy Hedrick is hitting .518 with 17 doubles, three triples and 20 RBIs.

“She’s really had a solid offensive year,” Hedrick noted. “She’s got a set of wheels. We can count on her to steal when we need it.”

Moorefield is slated to play at 11:30 a.m. The team expects to send senior Danica Rogers to the mound. So far this season, Rogers is 10-6 and has thrown 83.1 innings. She has a 3.108 ERA and has given up 66 hits and struck out 94 batters.

“She’s small, but she’s mighty on the mound,” Yellow Jackets coach Tammy Ayers said. “She really hits her spots well. She’s also not afraid to tell me when a pitch isn’t working so we can try something different.”

Offensively, Moorefield will rely on seniors Beth Cook, Kelsey Hines and Ashley Rexrode, along with junior Brooke Riggleman to push runs across the plate.

Cook plays short stop and sports a .600 batting average. She has 51 hits, eight home runs, nine doubles and one triple. On the mound, she has a 4-0 record with a 1.78 ERA.

“She’s extremely smart at the plate,” Ayers said. “She knows what to do when she’s at the plate. She’s a quiet leader, but all the girls look up to her. She is a 110 percent team player.”

Hines anchors the infield from second base. She’s batting .321 with seven doubles, two home runs and one triple.

“She didn’t play last season due to an injury,” Ayers said. “She has came back really strong. She can definitely hit a line drive when we need it.”

Ayers said Riggleman plays first base and is the team’s power hitter. Riggleman is hitting .398 with 35 hits, including one home run, two triples and 12 doubles.

“She’s a true power hitter,” Ayers said. “Her home run numbers are down, but she really hits the ball hard. She’s also not afraid to go after the ball on first base. She will stretch her body out and do what she needs to do to catch the ball.”

In the outfield, Ashley Rexrode patrols center field. She’s hitting .292 with three triples and three doubles.

“She really does an awesome job defensively,” Ayers said. “She’s fast and she can cover a lot of ground.”