GRAND LEDGE – Written on Bry Chapman’s left arm in black was the simple phrase “Prove it.”
Chapman has felt there’s been much for the Holt softball team to prove – especially falling short in the Softball Classic this spring.
And Chapman did her part to help the CAAC Blue champion Rams prove their point.
The senior pitcher got it done in the circle and at the plate to help Holt capture a third consecutive district title Saturday. Chapman capped the day by driving in five runs and not allowing a hit during a three-inning, 16-0 mercy-rule victory over Jackson in its Division 1 district final at Grand Ledge.
“We had a lot of hype around us because we had won the Classic last year and then ended up falling short this year,” Chapman said. “We just had a lot to prove to people. Us seniors, we just weren’t done yet. We wanted to show everyone that we could do this.”
Chapman and Holt’s seniors were doused by a Gatorade shower after playing a big role in helping the Rams (29-8) advance to the regional it hosts next week.
“We kind of like earned that shower,” Chapman said. “Us seniors have put in so much time and to win this means a lot to us.”
Chapman picked up the pitching victory in both Holt wins Saturday and didn’t allow an earned run. She pitched the Rams to a 3-1 victory over CAAC Blue runner-up Grand Ledge (32-6) in the opener. Chapman also started the sixth-inning rally against Grand Ledge that helped Holt advance to the district final.
Chapman drew a leadoff walk in the sixth and Mackinley Lane plated the go-ahead run with a hit to right field two batters later. Kasey Ramirez also drove in a run in the sixth to help the Rams end what was a strong season by the Pat Malloy-coached Comets, who will return their entire squad next year.
“Grand Ledge is a great team (and has) great hitters,” Holt coach Kim Reichard said. “We gave them the first run unearned. The fact that our bats answered back was a great turning point in the game.”
The Rams coasted in the district final, scoring 10 runs in the opening inning en route to the win. Olivia Cottom, Lexi Grimaldi and Lane were among those that drove in runs during the mercy-rule victory.
Next up for Holt is trying to extend its season further and prove even more at the regional, which will begin with a semifinal against Howell.
“This senior class, they want to end well,” Reichard said.
“There’s nothing better than playing on your home field for the regional. We’re excited about that opportunity.”
Contact Brian Calloway at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @brian_calloway.