Wahama’s Lieving repeats as 2022 LKC softball Player of the Year
PARKERSBURG — For the second straight softball season, the Wahama White Falcons reigned supreme above the rest of the Little Kanawha Conference.
Not only did Wahama defend its LKC title, but the gang from Mason County also capped off a 29-2 campaign for head coach Chris Noble by securing a repeat crown in the Class A state softball tournament.
Noble not only received the nod for the best coach in the conference for a second consecutive season, but junior Mikie Lieving once again was honored as the LKC Player of the Year.
Along with compiling a 21-2 pitching record that included one save and a 1.63 earned run average, Lieving finished with 269 strikeouts in 154 2-3 innings of work. The White Falcon scored 71 runs and batted .644 to go along with 15 doubles, 10 triples, a dozen round-trippers, 12 stolen bases and 42 runs-batted-in. On top of that, she drew 21 bases on balls and went down on strikes just twice.
“She’s had some really good games,” admitted coach Noble, who watched teammates Amber Wolfe and Lauren Noble also earn repeat nods on the all-LKC first unit at catcher and infield, respectively.
“Mikie has had another incredible season, both pitching and offensively. She has natural talent, plus she puts in the work. She does a ton of work outside of school ball.”
Wolfe, who threw out 38.1% of would-be base stealers and had no errors, finished with a .538 average. Wolfe ended the campaign with 56 RBIs as well as 17 doubles, one triple and 12 home runs. Noble, who made just two errors at shortstop (.968% fielding), had 15 doubles, a triple, 10 bombs and a team-high 57 runs-batted-in. Her final batting average was .636.
The trio of White Falcons were joined as repeat all-LKC first team selections by Ravenswood catcher Hattie Kennedy, Gilmer County infielder Taylor McHenry and Tyler Consolidated outfielder Leah Loudin.
Kennedy, who was an outfielder last year, made just three errors and threw out nine runners. She hit .551 with 10 doubles, three triples, two homers and 23 RBIs. The Red Devil also swiped 10 bases and drew a dozen base on balls against a trio of strikeouts. Like Kennedy, the Titan McHenry helped her team reach the LKC tournament. In her final season, the Titan finished with a .544 average, six steals, 10 doubles, seven three-baggers, 14 home runs and 52 runs-batted in. Loudin stole 24 bases, hit .350 and had four doubles, a triple, one tater and 14 RBIs.
Doddridge County, which finished runner-up to Wahama in the LKC and was ousted in the regional by Class A state runner-up Petersburg, was represented on the first team by pitcher Makenna Curran, outfielder Olivia See and infielder Josalyn Lipscomb. Curran, who knocked in 22 runs, compiled a 21-7 record inside the circle that included 182 punchouts in 156 innings. See posted a .422 average, stole 16 bags and also produced six doubles, a triple and had 26 runs-batted-in. Lipscomb stole 22 bases, had 44 RBIs, batted .560 and clubbed 15 doubles, five triples and eight long balls.
St. Marys reached the state tournament for the second time in school history and a pair of Blue Devils earned first team all-LKC honors — pitcher Ella Smith and Zoey Winland, who was slotted in the outfield. Smith went 10-3 with a 1.16 ERA and punched out 100 in 103 innings. She also batted .414 with six doubles, four home runs and 34 runs-batted-in. Winland, who stole 13 bases, finished with a .429 average, seven doubles, six triples, three bombs and 25 RBIs.
Two other Titans made the first team in outfielder Stevie Starsick and utility Carrah Ferguson, who had a 16-8 record while hitting .453 with seven doubles, four triples, one homer, six steals and 21 RBIs. Starsick knocked in 25 runs and had a .364 average with a double and two triples.
Also earning all-LKC honors on the first unit were a pair of infielders — Roane County’s Lacy Mitchell (.514, eight doubles, five HRs, 31 RBIs) and Braxton County’s Emmalee Jarvis (.507, four HRs, eight doubles).
Wahama’s Elissa Hoffman, Ravenswood’s Macy Casto and Roane County’s Mahailey Nicholson were selected by league coaches as the second team all-LKC pitchers. Jayci Gray of Ritchie County and Katie Young of Roane County were the catchers.
The second team infield consisted of Wahama’s Emma Knapp, Williamstown’s Kameron Beck, Doddridge County’s Abby Kelley, Gilmer County’s Bayley Frashure and St. Marys’ Breanna Price.
Emily Wratchford of Ravenswood, Webster County’s Jaylynn Robinson, Ritchie County’s Lillie Law and Williamstown’s Ava Johnson made the second team outfield. Gilmer County’s Emma Taylor landed the utility spot.
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