Softball falls to Topeka High and Washburn Rural

Avery Inman, Staff Writer

During the third week of competition, the Manhattan High softball team took on Topeka High Monday, losing 2-1 and Washburn Rural Friday at home, losing 4-0 and 10-1. The team faced three of the hardest teams in the League –Seaman, Topeka High and Washburn Rural– within 7 days. 

“We were looking forward to getting these games played,” head coach Connie Miller said. “We were glad to get through that part of our schedule. Those are always three very tough games.”

The team started the week off facing Topeka High, last year’s State champions. While MHS didn’t come home with a win, there were good takeaways from the games. 

“I was pretty happy with how we played those games. We came in with good focus and intensity and we played some good defense,” Miller said. “I felt pretty good about the way we played, despite the losses there were a lot of positives to take out of those games.”

Many times in sports teams and players face challenges mentally that cause them to struggle with competitions. This past week practice wasn’t the best that it could’ve been and resulted in struggles on the field during Friday night’s game against Washburn. Along with facing mental challenges, there are always areas that the players want to focus on improving. 

“I was kind of having a mental block today, I think we’re going to be stronger the next game,” senior catcher Paige Dupler said. “I want to work on batting, I’ve been in a slump with that.”

Despite losing Friday night, the team had good intensity and drive on Monday and the hope is to carry that forward and put the Washburn game behind them. 

“I was super proud of us, we came out and played how we wanted to play, especially in the first game we really played our best,” junior first baseman Kierra Goos said. “Topeka High is a really good team, they won state last year, I’m just really proud of everyone.”

Next week the girls will have four days of practice before facing Emporia away on Friday. 

“Next week I want to come back with a more focused intensity. It’s completely within our ability to win more games, and we need to change our mental attitude to move forwards,” Miller said. “I feel pretty good [going into the next game]. We are pretty hopeful, it’s a team that we’ve had success against in years past, and as long as we bring our A game and play up to our potential we shouldn’t have a lot of trouble.”