The new softball park doors are locked most of the day, but that’s not stopping the defending Region A Division 1 Champion Softball Champions from preparing for the upcoming season. Anxious to get underway, the softball players will begin the season opening their doors to a newly renovated park with their school colors plastered all around.
While the image may be only a sign, it may very well be the name in championship history books this season as Rappahannock Raiders Softball Team looks to capitalize on its success. According to principal Jesse Boyd, of Rappahannock High School, the public and former softball players of the school are invited to the grand ceremony of the new softball park on March 12 at 5 p.m. The park is located at the previous Richmond County Little League Ball Park.
On March 12 at 5 p.m., the Rappahannock High School Softball Team will play and host their first game of the season against another defending region champion in the King William Lady Cavaliers. But before they begin playing, the team will have a grand opening of their new field along with former softball players, family members friends and members of the school division.
“We really do appreciate the field,” said Rappahannock Coach Ellen Gaines. She said she hopes all the former softball players will return for the opening ceremony.
Gaines said the ladies have been able to play on the new field already, but return to their old field at the batting cages.
As for the upcoming season, Gaines said her girls are looking forward to picking up where they left off and return to the state tournament.
“They are fully capable of going farther than last year’s team,” Gaines said.
Gaines lost four players to graduation including Ashley Marks, Katie Lewis, all district infielder Bethany Pritchard and district player of the year Hannah Pierson.
Senior Carlie Clark and junior Hallie Berger return as Rappahannock’s top pitchers. They will be joined by fellow returning seniors Kelsey Berhalter, Rachel Berger, Olivia Gaulding, Hannah Marks and Amanda Headley; and juniors Rhiannon and Brandi Mulvena and Xenna Belfield, Amanda Headley.
Juniors Katelin Hamilton, Summer Sanders and Chelsea Smith, and sophomores Lexi Hanks and McKenzie Hall are also added to this year’s team.