Lady Tigers softball strong on the dirt

Wednesday, April 14, 2021
Freshman Natalie Crumpler, left, celebrates with Coach Ashley Fly after hitting a home run in a 15-0 win over Verona, one of three homers in the contest. Kyle Troutman/

Exeter softball team 8-3 overall, 2-1 in conference play

The Exeter softball team is making great strides this season, sitting at 8-3 at the start of this week and at 2-1 in Ozark 7 Conference play.

Ashley Fly, Lady Tigers head coach, said things have gone well through the first half of the season.

“We’ve learned to do a few things that we weren’t doing well at the beginning of the season, and we have capitalized on some of that progress and are improving every day,” she said. “Our conference wins have definitely been important. We’ve played some teams we probably shouldn’t have lost to, but some others we have played really well against.”

A couple standout wins for Exeter so far are in the Ozark 7 over Golden City, 11-1, and Verona, 15-0.

In the Verona win at home, the Lady Tigers hit a trio of homers, two out-of-the-park dinks from freshman Natalie Crumpler and senior Hailey Mattingly, and one inside-the-park scurry from Jailia “Izzy” Lee.

“In general, we’ve had some clutch hits, and we had that home run from our freshman last week,” Fly said. “Aubrey Antle has also done really well for us on the mound hitting her spots.”

Exeter’s lone conference loss came 7-0 at the hands of College Heights, which has only one loss on the season to East Newton.

“Conference-wise, we still have a few,” Fly said. “We are probably not in contention for a title, but we are in contention for second place. A couple of our wins have been in the district, too, so when we have the district seeding in a few weeks, those wins will definitely help us.”

Fly said the Lady Tigers’ biggest strength at the moment is its focus, something that has been learned as the season goes on.

“We are taking things one step and one game at a time,” she said. “In the beginning of the season, we were trying to look at the big picture, but now, we are going game by game and focused on the process of things.”

Fly said the team is still trying to put a few pieces together, like the best positions for some underclassmen and putting forward the best lineup.

“Right now, we’re just working on the little things, and we are working on our small game every day, as well,” she said.

The Lady Tigers hosted Clever on Monday and Galena on Tuesday. They will participate in the Jasper Invitational Softball Tournament on Friday and Saturday.

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