Resilient, fired up Polk softball team wins two more

Published 10:00 pm Thursday, March 24, 2016

A team can dwell on a tough loss, or it can use that tough loss for motivation.

Polk County’s varsity softball team has taken the latter path following a disappointing loss to conference rival Madison on March 11.

After wins this week, over West Henderson and Avery County, the Wolverines are 7-1 overall, and 3-1 in the Western Highlands conference.

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“It’s been fun,” remarked head coach Billy Alm. “It’s a group of talented girls. They push each other. They don’t like to lose.” That, he noted, is a winning combination.

On Tuesday, March 22, Polk scored six in the first inning on the way to blanking Avery, 8-0. In the third, Autumn Owen crashed a two-run homer to emphatically end the scoring.

Ashley Scruggs pitched five innings, with Haley Fowler hurling the last two. Fowler fanned four of the six batters she faced.

“It’s been tough,” Alm continued, “but they still remember the Madison game. I’m almost hoping that fuels the fire for us.”

Apparently it has, especially as Polk’s intensity level has been high since then, Alm remarked.

Yesterday, Polk played Pisgah, whom Alm described as “one of the top teams in the area.” It was a non-conference game.

On Monday, March 28, Polk faces another impressive team, Union, South Carolina, which has won several recent state championships. That game will take place at USC Upstate, starting at 5 p.m.

“Resilience” is another term that describes great teams. On March 21, at West Henderson, Polk showed that quality in forging an 11-8 eight-inning win, after the Knights scored four to tie the game in the home seventh.

Each team plated three runs in the first inning, with the Wolverines adding two in the second, one in the third, a pair in the sixth, and three to win in the eighth.

Ashley Scruggs pitched all eight.

As well as the Wolverines have been playing, “we’re kind of struggling with the slower pitching,” Alm admitted. That’s not kept them from winning—maybe just from setting offensive records that will last a long time.

Polk’s next home is against Madison on April 5, for a rematch against the Patriots. Varsity play begins at 4 p.m.