Lady Sharks Extend Their Season


The Lady Sharks softball team advanced to the regional semi-finals with a thrilling 4-3 win over Paxon last Wednesday.

Michelle Holder pitched brilliantly for the Sharks after escaping a first-inning jam that had runners on second and third with two outs. Holder struck out the first two batters of the game, then issued a walk. The next Paxon batter laid down a bunt and resulting misplays by the Shark infield put two runners in scoring position. Holder recovered to get the next batter to ground out to Claudia Cotto.

Ponte Vedra mounted the next threat in the third inning. Lauren Struble started matters with a walk and advanced to third on Michelle Leone’s double. Maddie Sypniewski’s sac fly scored Struble and the Sharks were up 1-0.

Paxon tied the game with a run in their half of the fourth on a pair of singles and an error. They lost a chance to score in the fifth when Cotto made a magnificent diving stop of a ground ball and threw the batter out at first. Cotto had mad a similar play in the Paxon third, diving to snare a line drive for an out.

The Sharks padded their lead to 3-1 in the sixth, taking advantage of a walk to Taylor Bradshaw, a wild pitch, Bailey Wagoner’s pinch hit RBI single and Struble’s RBI double off the right centerfield fence.

In the meantime, Holder was cruising. She set Paxon down in order in the fifth and sixth inning.

Ponte Vedra would score an insurance run in the top of the seventh when Cotto rapped an RBI single to score pinch runner Madison Lucchino. As things turned out the Sharks would need that insurance run.

Holder struck out the first two batters of the Paxon seventh, but then gave up pair of singles and a double to bring the hosts to within one with the tying run in scoring position. The freshman pitcher kept her cool and induced a grounder to Cotto for the final out. In all, Holder allowed three runs (two earned) on eight hits, walked one and struck out 12.