Ballard’s Fisher makes second team
Three members of the Ballard softball team made the all-Raccoon River Conference first team after helping the Bombers place third in the conference in 2013.
The junior trio of Brooke Mallon, Annie Stolte and Kenzie Ihle were all chosen after helping Ballard go 12-4 in the RRC.
Showing just how strong the conference was in 2013, Class 4A state champion Dallas Center-Grimes won the conference title with a 14-2 record and 4A state runner-up Carlisle took second with a 13-3 mark. The final RRC standings also saw 4A fifth-place team Winterset come in fourth with an 11-5 record and 3A state champion Bondurant-Farrar had to settle for fifth, finishing just above .500 at 9-7.
Mallon shared the first-team catcher spot with unanimous choice Elin Landgren of Carlisle. Mallon hit .362 with a .423 on-base average, .596 slugging average, three home runs and eight RBI in conference play and she threw out eight batters from behind the plate.
Stolte made the first team infield after an outstanding season at shortstop. She was joined by Winterset’s Sammie Nicholson, Carlisle’s Taylor Davis, DCG’s Allison O’Brien and unanimous choice Taylor Benshoof of Winterset on the first-team infield.
Stolte posted a .255 batting average, .529 slugging average, three home runs, 11 runs and 10 RBI against RRC competition. She also made 29 assists, 27 putouts and just two errors in 58 chances in the field.
Ihle was chosen as a first-team utility player. Carlisle’s Shyanne Dubois, Adel-Desoto-Minburn’s Kenzie Sutton and Bondurant-Farrar’s Cailey Schlenker were also utility picks on the first team.
Ihle hit .400 with a .556 OBA and slugging average of .900 and she smacked an impressive six home runs with 15 RBI against RRC foes. Ihle also went 12-4 with an earned-run average of 0.76 and 92 strikeouts against 24 walks in 110 innings during RRC play.
The rest of the all-RRC first team was made up of pitchers Paige Lowary of DCG and Karly Olson of Winterset and outfielders Payton Mercer of Carlisle, Macey Wolfe of DCG and Ashley Burrows of Bondurant-Farrar. Lowary, Mercer and Wolfe were unanimous selections.
Senior left fielder Sydney Fisher gave Ballard one player on the all-RRC second team. Fisher made the second-team outfield after hitting .348 with seven steals and 13 runs and committing just one error with 17 putouts and 14 assists in the field.
Two more Bombers made all-RRC honorable mention in senior first baseman Katie Ahrenholtz and junior right fielder Ellie Godwin.
Ahrenholtz hit .224 with a double and eight RBI at the plate and she posted a .984 fielding average in conference play. Godwin hit .349 with nine runs and five RBI and she made 10 putouts and no errors in the field.
DCG’s Steve Schlafke was named RRC Coach of the Year.
All-Raccoon River Conference softball teams
First team: P – Paige Lowary (Jr.)*, DCG; Karly Olson (Sr.), Winterset. C – Brooke Mallon (Jr.), Ballard; Elin Landgren (Sr.)*, Carlisle. IF – Taylor Davis (Jr.), Carlisle; Allison O’Brien (So.), DCG; Taylor Benshoof (Sr.)*, Winterset; Annie Stolte (Jr.), Ballard; Sammie Nicholson (Jr.), Winterset. OF – Payton Mercer (Jr.)*, Carlisle; Macey Wolfe (Sr.)*, DCG; Ashley Burrows (Jr.), Bondurant-Farrar. UTIL – Shyanne Dubois (So.), Carlisle; Kenzie Sutton (So.), ADM; Kenzie Ihle (Jr.), Ballard; Cailey Schlenker (Sr.), Bondurant-Farrar.
Second team: P – Emma Olejniczak (8th), Perry; Gabby Schnathorst (Fr.), Carlisle. C – Emma Borches (So.), Carroll. IF – Savannah Marker (Sr.), Winterset; Keely Bycroft (Jr.), Bondurant-Farrar; Hattie Hupke (Jr.), Carlisle; Kennedy Vinchattle (Jr.), Boone. OF – Sydney Fisher (Sr.), Ballard; Dianna Slight (8th), Boone; Rachel Lowary (8th), DCG. UTIL – Lauren Janning (Jr.), Carroll; Brooke Kramer (8th), DCG; Julie Diw (Jr.), Perry; Annika Ekstam (Jr.), Bondurant-Farrar; Tabitha Taylor (Jr.), DCG.
Honorable mention: Chelsie Benshoof (So.), Winterset; Jessica Wyant (Jr.), ADM; Jackie Peyton (Jr.), DCG; Frankie Eklund (Sr.), Perry; Hannah Tiffany (Jr.), ADM; Tacie Blunk (Sr.), Boone; Katie Ahrenholtz (Sr.), Ballard; Ellie Godwin (Jr.), Ballard; Taylor Davis (Jr.), Carlisle; Macy Johnson (8th), Winterset; Emily Wilson (So.), Bondurant-Farrar; Haley Stevens (Sr.), Carroll; Brooke Petersen (Sr.), Carroll; Lindsey Kunch (Jr.), Perry; Caitlyn Gruening (Jr.), ADM.
*Denotes unanimous selection
Final RRC standings
RRC Coach of the Year: Steve Schlafke (DCG)