Getting rewarded: Six Warriors make SWL All Conference first team



1st Team

Infield- Brooke Williams (Fruita Monument), Tayler Else (Central), Jessica Romine (Central), Brittany Hoppe (Central), Kelsey Jull (Grand Junction)

Outfield - Whittney Stone (Central), Whitney Robison (Grand Junction), Kendra Williams (Fruita Monument), Taylor Moore (Durango)

Pitchers - Mikayla Duffy (Central), Erika Chirdon (Fruita Monument)

Catchers - Danielle Romine (Central), Ashleigh Wissel (Fruita)

Utility - Hannah Etchart (Montrose)

2nd Team

Infield - Conner Culver (Montrose), Sarina Bernazzani (Durango), Jordan Paulson (Fruita Monument), Taylor Johnson (Fruita), Jennifer Kelly (Grand Junction)

Outfield - Joei Ritter (Grand Junction), Kyli Banks (Montezuma-Cortez)

Pitchers - Cierra Cosslett (Grand Junction)

Catcher - Paula Lage (Grand Junction)

Utility - Hannah Mahnke (Fruita Monument)

Coach of the Year - Scott Else, Central

Player of the Year - Mikayla Duffy, Central

The 2009 Central High School softball team was a talented bunch that made it to the final four in the state softball tournament and lost only two games all year.

Monday the Warriors were rewarded with six players selected to the Southwestern League All-Conference’s first team.

Senior Tayler Else along with junior Jessica Romine and sophomore Brittany Hoppe all were selected in the infield. Whittney Stone was one of the four outfielders and Danielle Romine was selected as one of the catchers. Junior Mikayla Duffy was named as both a first-team pitcher and the SWL Player of the Year.

“I expected all six girls to make it and I pleaded their case,” Central coach Scott Else said.

Else was named as the SWL coach of the year and said that distinction is a reflection of his team.

“When you have girls that are that talented it’s easy to coach them,” Else said. “It’s the play of the girls that got me that award.”

As for Duffy, it’s the third straight year she was selected as a first-team pitcher. Duffy went 17-2 with a 1.53 ERA in 19 games pitched. She struck out 137 batters and walked only 37. Else said he wasn’t surprised about the success she had on the mound this year. He added that the big surprise for him was the stellar year Duffy had as a hitter.

“I expected her to get the pitching numbers,” Else said. “But never in my wildest dreams did I think she’d put up the offensive numbers. I’m very proud of her for that.” At the plate Duffy finished with a .646 batting average and a jaw-dropping 65 RBI.

In Jamie Dunn’s first year as head coach, Fruita Monument finished with 17 wins and qualified for the state tournament. Because of the strong season, seven Wildcats made their way onto the first and second teams. On the first team were pitcher Erika Chirdon and catcher Ashleigh Wissel as well as sisters Brooke and Kendra Williams.

Freshman Hannah Mahnke was selected to the second team as a utility player.

Grand Junction had six players named to the All-SWL teams led by first-team selections infielder Kelsey Jull and outfielder Whitney Robison. Pitcher Cierra Cosslett and catcher Paula Lage were both named to the second team.

“I think the SWL coaches did a great job of picking the teams,” Else said. “The first team is pretty legit. You can take that team and play any other all-conference team in the state and they’d do pretty well.”


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