CHARLES CITY – For the Charles City softball team, it has been a season for the ages. After finishing last season with a 33-8 record, the Comets lost five senior starters and the expectation seemed to be that the team would take a small step back as they reloaded with young players.
That seems laughable now. At 25-0, Charles City has been a force on the diamond.
The Comets have been dominant in all aspects of the game. At the plate, junior Lisabeth Fiser leads the team with a batting average of .578 and an on-base percentage of .598. Freshman Rachel Chambers leads the team with 10 home runs and a slugging percentage of 1.014.
On the mound, Samantha Heyer has been nearly unhittable. Heyer has a 23-0 record and has allowed just six earned runs all season. She has struck out 226 batters and walked just 16. Her opponent batting average is .064.
“I think its all about attitude,” Comets coach Brian Bohlen said. “I’ve got nine girls in the starting lineup, and five on the bench, and everyone has a positive attitude. Everyone works hard every day. We play selfless ball. We play for each other.”
That selfless attitude showed in Wednesday night’s 8-1 win over Central Springs. In the fourth inning, Chambers laid down a bunt to try to advance a base runner and made it to first base. The next batter, Ashlyn Hoeft, hit a three-run home run.
“I just asked my home run leader to sacrifice bunt to move a run into scoring position, for Ashlyn Hoeft then to hit the three run homer to put us in the lead,” Bohlen said. “That’s being a selfless player. I think that’s the strong suit of this team. They do what is best for this team. “
You have free articles remaining.
While the expectations were still high for this squad coming into the season, even the team seems surprised at its 25-0 start. Six players in the Comets starting lineup are either freshman or sophomores, and even after losing five starters from last season, the Comets have gotten better.
“I think it’s what separates this team from every other team I’ve ever had,” Bohlen said. “It’s a pleasure to come to practice and games. The girls work so hard on their own. They come in and hit on their own. They do the extra things they need to do to get better on a daily basis. I think the attitude of this team is what separates it from a lot of the teams I’ve had in previous years.”
Heyer is a player who doesn’t desire acclaim for her accomplishments. On Wednesday night, Heyer struck out Central Springs left fielder Aurora Stepleton for her 800th career strikeout.
Heyer didn’t know what was happening when the game was stopped to congratulate her, saying that she doesn’t pay attention to the numbers. She also gave credit to her teammates, rather than accepting any for herself.
“It’s a great honor, (but) to me it doesn’t really mean anything,” Heyer said. “I just do what I can do for my team. I have a great catcher. A lot of the strikeouts that I’ve had have been because of my catcher, Ashlyn Hoeft. She frames it. The defense behind me. I just have trust, and I throw the ball. I don’t look at stats or anything. I just play the game.”
While the team is perfect so far this season, it isn’t through pure talent alone. It takes a lot of hard work to maintain the success.
“On a daily basis, everyone has something they can improve on," Bohlen said. "We try to find one thing per day with each girl that is maybe their weakness, and work on it. We put in an hour or two of work every day on those individual things, then that correlates into the games. You see that pay off in the games."