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Feature For Feedback

Discussion in 'Writers' Workshop' started by bballscribe, Jul 13, 2006.

  1. bballscribe

    bballscribe Member

    Available for feedback.

    Instead of the crisp indention of metal upon ball, there's a blistering "whack" sound that resonates throughout Cinco Ranch.
    The latter would be the end result of a softball thrown with such fire that it knows no boundaries beside a vulnerable leather glove.
    This is life at Cougar Field, where the Lady Cougars are hard at work preparing for this week's first round playoff matchup against Tomball.
    It's only fitting that Cougar hitters have little success against senior Amanda Crow and juniors Kristie Chin and Shannon Smith during practices. Opponents have no more luck against the trio as well.
    "If you want to go far in the playoffs, you have to have the pitching," Cougars coach Judy Whillock said. "Being that we do have three gives all the girls the confidence we need to take us to the next level."
    The three flame-throwers have been a significant contributors to Cinco's 23-6 record this season, including 14-0 in District 19-5A.
    As a staff, they have made life difficult for opponents, compiling a 1.23 ERA and averaging 6.6 strikeouts per contest.
    What stands out with this group is that each brings something different to the table. Neither pitches like another, but all three knows what it takes to get wins and get hitters out.
    "They all have gotten stronger as the year has gone on," Whillock said. "Kristie is more of a 'junk ball' pitcher. She has great movement and she mixes the speeds really well. Amanda and Shannon both throw harder than Kristie which makes for a great combination between the three."
    Crow has put together successful consecutive years of pitching. In 2005, she went 10-3 with a 1.45 ERA and 55 strikeouts. She topped those numbers this year, compiling a 9-1 record with a 1.3 ERA and 64 strikeouts.
    "Kristie and Shannon are great pitchers and we complement each other very well," Crow said. "We pitch everyday and help each other. I worked on my curveball a lot and that's been successful for me. I've also worked out a lot to get stronger."
    Smith has made an indelible impression on the staff in only her first year on varsity. Due to a fiery rise ball, Smith has accumulated a 1.24 ERA with 56 strikeouts in only 45.34 innings.
    "I pitch everyday and work really hard on my spins," Smith said. "I think about every pitch and pay attention to the mental aspect. My rise ball is really working well this year so that's been a big help."
    The humble Chin posted a 7-2 record this season and held opponents to a mere .173 batting average, the best on the team. She's also assisted her own cause by hitting .462 with 12 RBIs and 17 runs scored.
    With such success, the staff provides a firm base for Whillock to rely upon come postseason, when series will be decided in three games. Her only problem with the trio is a concern other teams would love to have.
    "The problem will be deciding who to throw," Whillock said. "The girls have been great all year under pressure so I am not worried about that. If someone is having a bad game, the other girls seem to step up."
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