Another fast start for Greenville softball

Greenville senior pitcher Grace Shaffer, one of two seniors along with Nyesha Wright, has helped the Green Wave to a 9-1 start. Greg Billing/CONTRIBUTED
Greenville senior pitcher Grace Shaffer, one of two seniors along with Nyesha Wright, has helped the Green Wave to a 9-1 start. Greg Billing/CONTRIBUTED

GREENVILLE – Last season was supposed to be the year for the Greenville Green Wave softball team.

That’s saying something for a program that won a state title in 2007, was state runner-up in 2012 and has won district titles 12 of the past 14 seasons. Nine seniors graduated from the 2020 team that never took the field because of a cancelled season.

“Last year would have been a special year. It’s very humbling,” Greenville coach Jerrod Newland said. “It makes you respect the game because you don’t know. Every day is a blessing, no matter what it is in life. It can be taken away at any time.”

With that message in mind, the Green Wave are making the most of this season. Greenville (9-1 overall, 5-0 Miami Valley League Miami Division) has outscored its opponents 126-23.

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Since taking over the program in February of 2003, Newland’s teams have won 20 or more games every season.

The Green Wave have also won 25 or more games the past 16 seasons.

Sophomore Skylar Fletcher leads Greenville with a .571 average (20-for-35). Junior Susie Blocher (.528), junior Bri Fellers (.483), sophomore Kenna Jenkinson (.481) and sophomore Alaina Baughn (.444) are among the team leaders.

Baughn has team highs with 21 runs batted in and four home runs and senior Nyesha Wright leads with 17 runs scored.

The Green Wave are ranked 1-2-3 in the league in both home runs and RBI with Baughn (4/21), Wright (3/19) and Blocher (3/18). Fletcher is fifth with 17 RBI.

Senior Grace Shaffer is 6-1 with a 1.13 ERA. She has 44 strikeouts in 37 innings pitched. Sophomore Kylie Hamm is 3-0 with a 2.22 ERA with 25 strikeouts in 22 innings.

“This year we have two seniors and a lot of neat, young kids playing around and having fun,” Newland said. “Any given day. That’s what’s great.”

So far the majority of those days have belonged to Greenville. The lone loss came 2-0 against undefeated Beavercreek (6-0).

Four of the five teams in the MVL’s Miami Division have winning records overall with Tippecanoe (5-0), Butler (6-2) and Troy (5-3). Tipp is also undefeated in league play at 4-0.

“We do a lot of breathing around here – deep breaths slowing the kids down and their heart rates – because coming into this year I think we only had two kids who ever had a varsity hit. We’re learning and having fun,” Newland said of a roster that has two seniors, six juniors, five sophomores and five freshmen.

“I’m really excited about the program and where we’re going.”

Beavercreek: Freshman Haley Ferguson has helped the Beavers to a 6-0 start from the pitching circle and the plate. She leads the team with a .619 average (13-for-21) with a team-high 11 RBI. She’s also 5-0 with a 1.02 ERA with 55 strikeouts in 34 innings pitched.

Chaminade Julienne: Scoring runs hasn’t been a problem for the Eagles (7-0). Sophomore Anna Engler (16 RBI), junior Natalie Bates (15 RBI) and sophomore Riley Fugett (15 RBI) rank 1-2-3 in that category in the Greater Catholic League Co-Ed division.

Bates is also hitting .654 and Fugett .652, putting them No. 2 and No. 3 in the league behind Cincinnati McNicholas’ Katia Roetenberger’s .750.

Fugett is 5-0 with a 0.45 ERA. She’s struck out a league-high 71 batters in 31 innings.

West Carrollton: Senior Nariah Mack leads the MVL with 50 strikeouts in 31 innings pitched. She’s 1-2 with a 3.84 ERA for the Pirates (2-6).

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