Archive for the ‘Softball’ Category

Members of the baseball team warm up before their home game against Maricopa Wells on Aug. 30. (Photo by Jaden Miner)

Members of the baseball team warm up before their home game against Maricopa Wells on Aug. 30. (Photo by Jaden Miner)

By Kylee Demauro
Cougar News Blog

     The Cactus Canyon softball team took its first loss in four years to Benjamin Franklin Charter High School. Despite the loss in the season opener on Aug. 25, the team has high hopes for the season.
     Entering the season, the Cougars had won 40 consecutive games and four straight league championships. The team has started a new three-game winning streak, but players don’t feel there is pressure to continue the title run, although it is the Cougars’ goal.
     “The pressure isn’t that bad,” said eighth-grader Elizabeth Cardenas. “You just have to have a positive attitude about everything.”
     The baseball team has started its season with a record of 4-0 and believe they have a chance to win the championship this season. Cactus Canyon has won the Desert Middle School Athletic League two times and their goal is to go back and win for a third time.
     “(My goal this season is) to win the championship and have an undefeated season, ” said Jaden Unise.
     Softball coach Bill Wilson and baseball coach Ramon Figueroa have worked to get players prepared for the season. Coach Wilson says his team needs to work on self confidence. He explained that his group of girls have, “a great attitude and will be fine.”
     “I prepare by making sure that we run drills that help the talent level that we have,” said Coach Wilson. “I expect us to win the league and tournament.”
     Many of the eighth graders on the softball and baseball team are excited to be leaders. They now get to teach the seventh graders a few things to help them through the season. The student athletes are excited and the eighth graders are ready to help out who they can. The two teams have their goals, but are still learning how to reach them.
     “I feel good because I can help the seventh graders to be better next year,” said Brian Favia.


IMG_5662By Jessica M.
Cougar News Blog

     Cactus Canyon Junior High’s softball and baseball teams both won Desert Middle School Athletic League championships this fall; thanks to all their hard work and practice.
     Both teams practiced very hard and the athletes learned many lessons for the game and in life. Playing the sport made the students more confident and taught them that winning requires a lot of serious practice and effort.
     “The girls learned how teamwork is so important in life in general, not just in softball, and that it takes hard work to get where you want to be,” says softball coach Bill Wilson.
     For the Lady Cougars, this is the fourth year in a row they have been victorious. The girls learned a lot from their experience and practiced very hard for another win this year.
     Eighth grader Lauren Powell says, “A lot of preparations went into winning the championships and going with an undefeated season such as always hustling while at practice and being serious during practice.”
     The teams will continue to be confident in what they do, while putting a lot of hard work into everything. They also gained discipline, a good work ethic, and realized how important their hard work can be. The students have impressed their coaches with their preparations, effort, and dedication.
     “Boys worked hard and I can’t wait to see them on my high school team,” said baseball coach Ramon Figueroa.
     The softball team hopes to keep their streak of wins going and their coach has confidence in the team, for next year.
     “We should be very good, next year and win it all again,” says Coach Wilson.


By Zoe Siegel
Cougar News Blog

     Cactus Canyon’s softball team is sliding its way through yet another winning season. After a 5-0 start, the Lady Cougars are trying to go undefeated for the 4th year in a row.
     The Lady Cougars have gone undefeated and won the Desert Middle Schools Athletic League title in each of the last three years. So far, they have beat Desert Winds, Hohokam, Combs, Maricopa Wells, and Mountain View. The team is now 35-0 under fourth-year coach Bill Wilson and they are trying to make it 40-0.
     “Our goal is to try and keep the undefeated streak going and win the tournament,” said Coach Bill Wilson.
      The pressure this year is high. With three years of no losses, there are a lot of people expecting the team to win.
     “If we lose a game, we will be the first team to in three years,” said Megan Wagner. “I don’t want to lose a game because we would be letting the school down.”
     Coach Wilson said the girls have amazing hearts and positive minds. They put their heart into all they do and are very passionate. If they do lose, he said it will be because the other team deserves it and the Cougars can start a new streak.
     “These girls have great heart and I think they can do it, and if we lose we’ll pick it up and keep getting better because if someone beats us they we will have to earn it,” said Wilson.

Photo by Kaileah Goucher

Photo by Kaileah Goucher

By Raylan J.
Cougar News Blog

Cactus Canyon’s softball season is underway. The school tryouts were Aug. 11, the final cuts were Aug. 19. A gathering of 35 girls tried out, and only 21 girls made the softball team.
The Cougars, have been undefeated for two years and haven’t lost in six games this season. Coach Bill is a strict coach, and many girls, can get their feelings hurt, and the exercises done can be difficult, but it’s just the best for the team.
“What made it difficult to make the softball team this year is that Coach Bill is a very strict coach, so you have to be listening or else he won’t think you’ll be ‘cut-out’ for the team,” said eighth-grader Alyssa Decino.
Coach Bill Wilson said Cactus Canyon’s team has always been strong at batting. Fielding is good, but batting has always been the speciality.
“Hitting is the team’s best aspect, and we need to continue to work on our pitching in all aspects of the game, so we can improve the girls attitudes, to continue to grow together as a team and work together, so we can be very good,” Wilson said. “Also, so we can win the tournament and league, and be undefeated at the end of the season again.”
To help reach the goal of another league title, softball players practiced before hand for the season, by…., such as going to the batting cages, playing catch with their friends, or just doing stretches.
“I have been preparing for the season by going to the indoor batting cages with my friends,” said eighth grader Maegan Smith. “And just throwing around a softball from time to time with my closest softball friends.”
The Cougars have been undefeated for two years and haven’t lost yet this season. The last game is Sept. 30 at home against Maricopa Wells. The league championships will be this Saturday Oct. 4, in Coolidge.

By Ashley Mothershed
Cougar News Blog

Cactus Canyon softball players have gone undefeated for two years in a row, never losing a game or championship. The Cougars won their second Desert Middle School Athletic League title with 4-2 win over Hohokam on Oct. 5.
The players were extremely confident entering the season, with almost all of the new seventh graders on the team having Little League experience. With many returning players from last year, coach Bill Wilson hoped he would lead his team to victory once again.
The team was confident that they would win the championship, but they knew that they still had to work hard at practice and stay focused to be ready for the biggest game of the season.
“I had confidence we would win, but Hohokam is a good team so I knew we would have to play to the best of our abilities to win,” eighth grader Mattie McMinn.
The title wrapped up a dominating season for the Cougars.
“The girls (finished) undefeated and outscored their opponents, 138 to 17 which is unheard of,” said Wilson.
Wilson said he is trying to build a team that will be successful for many years. For example, 48 girls tried out for the team this year and he kept extra players, even if it meant not everyone played in every game. He says he is glad he did because those players will now be able to serve as leaders on next year’s team.

By Mariahrose Manell
Cougar News Blog

This year Cactus Canyon had a huge turnout at softball tryouts. Over 40 girls with dreams for making the cuts tried out.
Aug. 12 was the beginning of the first tryouts and the team was announced Aug. 19. Some of the tryout drills were about practicing with one another and making good throws as well as sticking as a team.
“Softball is what I do, I’ve been playing it for such a long time its like second nature for me,” said eighth-grade catcher Audrey Powell. “ I just went out there and showed Coach Bill and Gadberry what I do best.”
Coaches encourage those that didn’t make the team to continue trying out next year. Seventh graders will have another chance to make the Cougar squad, while eighth grades can try out to be Prospectors. They said as long as players believe in themselves there will be a chance for them on the team.
Each of the tryouts was nearly three hours long and coaches fulfilled the practice time wisely, helping athletes get better. Working as a team is important in a sport like softball.
“I learned that being a team is important, and working as a team is important in the future,” said eighth grader Denae Pruehs.
“(Our goal for tryouts was) to develop chemistry with each other, learning to push themselves through adversity, and becoming great sportswomen,” said Coach Bill Wilson.
The Cougars will play their first game of the season Tuesday, Sept. 3, at Mountain Vista.
CCJH cheerleaders and band members march in the Lost Dutchman parade on Feb. 23.

CCJH cheerleaders and band members march in the Lost Dutchman parade on Feb. 23.

By McKenna Nimtz
Cougar News Blog

This year at Cactus Canyon Junior High, players from softball, cheer, and band were in the Lost Dutchman Parade Feb. 23.
The students thought it would be a great idea to be in the parade to show everyone what their school offers.
“The 13 softball girls that were in the parade had a blast passing out candy to the little boys and girls and they are looking forward to see the younger girls take their place next year,” said softball coach Bill Wilson.
Participants from each group tried their best to be enthusiastic to showing everyone in the crowd that each team is something special and unique.
“The girls did a few cheers along they way with laughs and enjoyment,” Wilson said. “They loved the attention from the crowd of the people who were watching the parade and did their best to steer up the crowd.”
The softball and cheer girls did not need to practice for the parade but the band did have to practice its songs to perform down the streets.
Almost everyone from each team was able to take part of their Saturday to represent CCJH.
“There were a few missing due to other activities, said cheer coach Cathy Messenger. “Out of 22, there were only two that were not able to make it.”

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By Sam Collins
Cougar News Blog

Cactus Canyon Junior High brought home two championships during the first sports season, the first for baseball and softball. Both teams came out undefeated the entire season.
At the championships, both the lady Cougars and the boys went against Mountain Vista and dominated. The softball team won 19-2 and the baseball squad won 14-1.
The softball team trained and played just like a family, and that’s one of the main reasons they were so successful. Baseball players worked hard and never gave up, that was their strength. Coaches of both teams said they were very proud of the way the teams played and represented CCJH.
“The girls had a great season, they never gave in,” softball coach Bill Wilson, said. “They hustled and ran the bases very aggressively, learning how to avoid the tag and working together as a team.”
Most of the seventh graders plan to return to the team next year. Eighth graders want to try out for the high school teams next year. All the players want to continue playing for a while, hopefully as one big happy family.
“We didn’t get our victories because we were good,” softball player and captain Brittany Gadberry said. “We pulled out these amazing victories by being a family.”

Softball adds two more wins

Posted: September 25, 2012 in Athletics, Softball
The Cactus Canyon softball team moved to 5-0 in league play with two wins last week. After a forfeit win over Mountain Vista on Thursday, the Cougars traveled to Maricopa Wells and earned a 20-4 win Friday in a make-up of a previously rained out game.
Mikayla Gilgert and McKinley Kelley combined to allow just five hits and one walk to the Panthers.
On offense, CCJH had 22 hits and were led by Brittany Gadberry’s 4-for-4 performance. Gadberry had two doubles and a triple and scored four runs. Denae Pruehs went 3-for-3 and also scored four runs, while Brooklyn Ochoa also had three hits for the Cougars. Breanna Conklin, Gilgert, and Mattie McMinn all had two hits and Audry Powell, Madison Kelly, Jessica Sigler, Jade Kroff, and Lexi Raleigh each had one.
The squad is all alone in first place and looks to move to 6-0 Tuesday when it hosts Hohokam.

Softball team wins again

Posted: September 14, 2012 in Athletics, Softball
The Cougar softball team started out fast with a 10-run inning and defeated Maricopa Wells 16-4 on Sept. 13.
Brittany Gadberry had a single and a triple in that inning as CCJH batted around. The Cougars pounded out 14 hits total and drew seven walks. The teams played just four innings because of the 10-run rule.
Breanna Conklin went 3-for-3 with three RBIs, while Ally Padilla had three hits and two RBIs. Audry Powell added two hits, while Denae Pruehs, Mikayla Gilgert, and Jade Kroff had one each.
McKinley Kelley started the game and threw two no-hit innings while striking out four. Mattie McMinn and Gilgert finished the game in the circle for CCJH.
Coach Bill Wilson added that Brooklyn Ochoa played a great game catching all three pitchers.
The 3-0 Cougars will play on the road at Hohokam Thursday, Sept. 20 before traveling to Maricopa on Friday to make up a rained out game against Desert Wind.