By Jeremy McDonald
SCIO, Ore.– The West Salem softball teams had a good wake-up call going into the North Medford Spring Break Invitational Saturday afternoon at Scio High School, ironically playing the Black Tornado from North Medford on this day.
The little miscues from errors to reading and reacting on plays had put the Titans in a early 4-0 hole in their 14-4 defeat on this day, but West Salem showed what they’re capable of in moments.
Strong plays like Megan Boyles lazer from right field to home in the second half of the game, mixed in Braeli Martin’s pitching too through the two rain delays the Titans and the Tornado had to go through. Two two-run home runs from Mya Ward and Bella Elliott had West Salem something to rest their hats on entering their annual Medford trip coming off their eye-opening defeat.
“It’s super exciting, I’ve been seeing that in practice as well and today really showed it,” Elliott said of the positive moments. “We have three, maybe four freshmen in our line-up and they’ve been doing great, and I’m really excited to see that again and everything in general. Just the potential in that.”
Freshman Maya Williams, Ward and Martin all saw action in Saturday’s action for a new-look Titan squad that graduated six from their 10-8 2021 squad. Besides Martin and Boyles splitting time in the circle for West Salem in place of Aliyah Wilsey, Mia Zachary replaces Reagan Davis behind the dish as Lauryn Johnson focuses on volleyball.
It’s the first time in five years that Zachary has caught as she caught as the junior adds catching to her resume of playing in the outfield and infield.
“It’s definitely interesting, but we needed a catcher, and I knew I was capable of doing it. I still knew I needed to do more outside of practice,” Zachary starts. “So, I worked on catching, blocking so I would be able to get it down.”
Celina Ball, Ward and Elliott are in the infield as Brooklyn Corliss comes in from the outfield to first until Shelby Chapman returns in a few days. Williams played in right field, Ava Pilgrim played in left field when Martin came in to pitch. Martin started in left field with Tianna Perez next to her at center field during Saturday’s game.
Ward went 2-for-2 with 2RBI’s and Elliott went 1-for-2 with her 2RBI’s. Zachary also collected two hits, going 2-for-3 at the plate as West Salem opens the North Medford Spring Break Invitational Monday against Sheldon (4pm) and Glencoe (6pm) at the US Cellular Fields in south Medford.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald