SHERWOOD TAKES THE NEXT STEP, REACHES
SOFTBALL STATE FINALS
Despite 3-0 win over Eleanor Roosevelt in the 4A state
semifinals, sending Warriors to first-ever finals, Sherwood has work to do
By Ryan Mink
This was the same point where Sherwood
faltered last year, in the 4A softball Maryland state semifinals.
And while the Warriors weren’t exactly pleased with their performance once
again, they’ll certainly take it this time around.
After putting up three runs in the first inning, Sherwood was shut out the
rest of the game but still managed to beat Eleanor Roosevelt, 3-0, at
Bachman Park in Glen Burnie Wednesday.
Sherwood’s win sets up a rematch of last year’s state semifinals, where
the Warriors lost to Chesapeake, 3-2, Saturday at the University of Maryland
at 6:30 p.m. It will be the first state final in Sherwood program history
and comes a year after Sherwood graduated two of the best players the school
has ever seen, making the feat all the more impressive.
“Last year we came so close and just fell behind by one run,” Sherwood
senior first baseman Kathy Holonich said. “This year actually winning and
going as a senior, it’s amazing. … A win’s a win at this point.”
Holonich drove in Sherwood’s first run in the first inning, brining home
Kelly Morrow, who walked to lead off the inning. Jessie Karp drove in Shayna
Popkin with an RBI fielder’s choice two batters later and her sister,
Jamie Karp, drove in Sherwood’s third run with an RBI single up the
middle, scoring pinch-runner Emily Witt.
“When we jumped out 3-0 on them in the first inning I thought maybe we
could make short work of them,” Sherwood Coach Pat Flanagan said.
But as Flanagan and everyone else watching the game gradually found out,
that wasn’t going to be the case. Sherwood (18-2) threatened throughout
the game but stranded 11 runners on base, putting more pressure on the
shoulders of junior pitcher Erin McMakin.
“I was a little nervous, but that was the best I could do,” McMakin
said. “I just choose not to think about it. I don’t want to get myself
worked up and have a little breakdown or anything. … It’s all I could
have hoped for.”
McMakin held Eleanor Roosevelt (17-3) to just two hits, both singles to lead
off the third and sixth innings respectively, and struck out 11 in the
process. McMakin was also 1-for-2 at the plate with a walk.
“She holds up so well,” Flanagan said. “ I mean, my goodness. We left
the door open every inning and they had opportunities every inning. Erin
really stepped up for us and she deserves a lot credit.”
Following the win, Flanagan gathered the players in the dugout and rattled
off a few things they didn’t do so well. Despite the win, it wasn’t a
joyous time. She elicited a brief outpouring of screams with her
proclamation that the girls were still “going to the show” but her
message was clear.
In order to beat Chesapeake, Sherwood is going to have to play better than
it did against Eleanor Roosevelt.
“We had opportunities every single inning,” Flanagan said. “We ran
ourselves out of a couple of plays and just didn’t hit when we needed to.
That could have come back to hurt us. Fortunately it didn’t. The next
couple days we’re going to have to practice a little harder to try to push
runs across any way we can.”