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The Shawnee News-Star
  • Scrimmage festival kicks off softball season

  • Nearly 20 teams gathered at the Firelake Ballfields to open their 2014 seasons with a series of scrimmages Monday.
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  • Bethel and Chandler were two of nearly 20 teams to get their softball seasons underway with their first live action during a scrimmage festival at the Ballfields at Firelake on Monday.
    Each team got at least three scrimmages on the day, with each game limited to a one hour time limit.
    “It was some good and some stuff that we need to work on that we shouldn’t need to work on,” Bethel head coach Tommy Block said. “There’s routine stuff we need to work on and just get it in their minds and get it down pat again.”
    The Lady Wildcats, who finished as the 4A state runners-up last season, won two of their scrimmages and tied Deer Creek in the third. Bethel opened with a shutout win over Norman and finished with an 8-5 win over Blanchard, tying the Lady Antlers 3-3 in between.
    Starting pitcher Kim Herren threw four shutout innings against Norman and added two more against Blanchard.
    “She threw pretty well today,” Block said.
    For the Chandler Lady Lions, Monday was an up-and-down day that started with a win over 5A Piedmont followed by three losses.
    “Our first game against Piedmont went really well,” head coach Bryan Herring said. “I thought we did a good job. The second game against Muskogee we didn’t do so well. We didn’t pitch well, didn’t play defense well.”
    The Lady Lions followed a 5-0 loss to Muskogee with a
    2-1 loss to Tulsa Union before ending their day with a 7-1 loss to Choctaw in which Herring rested most of his starters.
    “Our third game against Tulsa Union we played well; we kind of got up for them,” Herring said. “Our final game, we wanted to get some other kids some reps, put them in game situations and see how they respond.”
    Herring’s niece Neleigh Herring will be the Lady Lions’ number one pitcher. The younger Herring gave up no earned runs in games against Piedmont and Union.
    “She’s the real deal,” Bryan Herring said.
    The Lady Lions will travel to Putnam City North for a pair of scrimmages on Thursday before opening the regular season at Jones next Monday.
    Both Chandler and Bethel will be playing in next weekend’s tournament at Firelake that begins on Thursday.
    Look for season previews of both teams in the News-Star this week.

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