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University beats Mead to take GSL slowpitch tourney title once again

UPDATED: Tue., Oct. 24, 2017

The University slowpitch softball team poses for a team picture following its 7-2 win over Mead in the Greater Spokane League title game on Tuesday. (Dave Nichols / The Spokesman-Review)
The University slowpitch softball team poses for a team picture following its 7-2 win over Mead in the Greater Spokane League title game on Tuesday. (Dave Nichols / The Spokesman-Review)

Winning never gets old. Even if you’ve been league tournament champion 10 of the last 12 years.

Such is the case for coach Jon Schuh and the University slowpitch team, which followed up its Greater Spokane League regular season title with a 7-2 win over fourth-seeded Mead at University HS on Tuesday.

“It doesn’t get boring. It’s fun,” senior Brianna Hecker said. “We’ve always done really well when we hit good and it’s fun my senior year to go out winning. It’s a good thing.”

Brooklyn Hecker drove in four, Gracee Dwyer went 2 for 3 with a double and two RBIs and the top three hitters in the order – Madison Thompson, Sierra Apodaca and Makayla Marshall – combined to go 6 for 9 and scored two runs each.

“The girls played well,” Schuh said. “We played good defense today, had some great double plays, a diving play in the hole that was awesome to see. If we play defense typically we’re going to be OK.”

The win earns U-Hi (21-1) the No. 1 seed to the first state tournament in Washington slowpitch history – pitting the top four teams in the GSL and the Greater St. Helens League on Saturday in Richland.

“Senior year, it’s like, wow!” Dwyer said of the prospect of playing in a state tournament.

“We’ve been waiting for that. (Schuh) told us last year that it could happen but then he said ‘Oh, you’ll be gone by then.’ So when we found out we literally were so happy we were crying.”

“I’m so excited,” added Hecker. “We’ve never had it before. Senior year to go to state is going to be really fun.”

Mead (17-6) knocked off perennial powerhouse Central Valley in a semifinal game to earn the title game appearance.

“It’s really nice to have a team that continues to battle, every game, every inning,” coach Tiffany Casedy said. “They really take this to heart and they just want to win, to succeed. They work hard at practice and the results have shown.

“I’m going to work really hard to the last out for these girls. I’m just really proud of them for not having given up all season and that why we were here in the top two, which is awesome for these girls.”

Tori Veter paced Mead with three hits and a run while Ciara Harding added a pair of hits and a run.

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