One change Sydney Griffin has seen in herself throughout her high school softball career is an increase in patience.
One thing that hasn’t changed? Griffin’s dominance.
Year in and year out, the Lincoln standout delivered from the circle. One year ago, she led the state in strikeouts.
This year, she was once again very close to that distinction. She settled for second, though Griffin and the Golden Eagles did not settle when it came time for the postseason.
Griffin was at her best when she needed to be, leading Lincoln to its fifth overall Class 2A sectional championship. She repeated as the Tri-Eastern Conference’s top player, and repeats also as the Palladium-Item’s Player of the Year in softball.
“There was no letdown,” said Lincoln coach Scott Griffin, also Sydney’s father and this year’s Palladium-Item Coach of the Year. “She’s just driven.”
She also means more to the Golden Eagles than just her pitching.
Griffin was a leader, and one of the team’s top hitters. When Lincoln reached the regional, sophomore and catcher Kerrigan Neff said the team’s sectional title meant “everything. Sydney’s a senior and it’s our last chance to play with her.”
“It was great to end that with those girls, and end my career with that,” Sydney Griffin said of winning the sectional.
“It was helping build our program. It got a little more attention to Lincoln softball. It helped in that way.”
Griffin helped Lincoln earn the attention.
She compiled 318 strikeouts this season, second in Indiana only to North Miami’s Josie Wood (338) according to statistics on maxpreps.com.
Griffin won 14 games with a miniscule 0.97 ERA. She nearly had a 15th win, too, though Lincoln was edged 5-4 by Indianapolis Scecina in a regional final played on the Crusaders’ home diamond.
Watching Griffin pitch during high school games was a fun experience for her dad — particularly from a coaching standpoint.
“Wherever you want it, she can put it there,” he said. “You can’t rattle her.”
Griffin also batted .333 with 15 RBIs.
“I just want to go out there and do my best and help the team any way I can,” she said. “It’s nice to see that, after the fact, my hard work has kind of paid off.”
It’s paid off with back-to-back Player of the Year honors in the TEC, and with Lincoln’s first sectional crown since 2007.
“She has always stepped up to a challenge,” Scott Griffin said. “That’s always motivated her the whole time, even with her travel ball.”
What motivates Griffin now is the chance for more softball success. She’ll continue her career at the University of Indianapolis.
“I’m really looking forward to growing as a player and bettering myself,” Griffin said.
Josh Chapin: (765) 973-4463 firstname.lastname@example.org or twitter.com/JoshChapinPI