Athlete of the Week:
This week we will focus on our hometown team the Independence Patriots. The Spring season belongs to the lady athletes. The athlete of the week is senior softball standout Sarah Johnson. The Patriot lead-off hitter had a tremendous season being the teams table setter with power and speed on the bases.
In her final season she accumulated a BA .541, OBP .681, SLG 1.066, OPS 1.747 in 4A competition. She posted 33 hits, with 15 extra base hits including 6 home runs. Johnson drew 23 walks setting the table for the Patriots to score runs early in games and giving the team an opportunity for a comeback victory in late innings. She also had a team leading 41 runs scored, contributed 27 RBIs along with a fielding percentage of .932 playing center field for the Patriots.
In her final game of the season, Johnson led the team going 2-for-4 drilling two-line drive base hits and scoring twice in a 4-3 loss in the opening round of the state tournament.
Natalie Johnson – The Patriot backstop had a solid season and will be returning next year for the Patriots to lead the charge. The rising junior power hitter posted a BA. 469, OBP .516, SLG .938, OPS 1.455. She led the team with 38 hits, 7 home runs along with 11 doubles, 3 triples, for a total of 21 extra base hits. She had a total of 129 total chances, committed only 3 errors for a fielding percentage of .977. Also, a strong throwing arm which can disrupt an opponent’s running game.
Morgan Clark – The team’s workhorse on the mound tossed 83.0 innings allowing 46 earned runs, 29 base-on-balls, 40 strikeouts, on 111 hits, while accumulating an ERA 3.880, WHIP 1.687. The sophomore also made a nice contribution with .357 batting average, OBP .418, SLG .571, OPS .989 with 25 hits, 8 for extra bases including 2 home runs.
Maliyah Alexander – The transfer fireballer from up North made a significant contribution in her initial season with the Patriots. She pitched 53 innings, allowed 17 earned runs, 47 hits, 16 walks, had 78 strikeouts, with an ERA 2.245, WHIP 1.189. Also, she contributed with a BA. 315, OBP .383, SLG .438, OPS .821 on 23 hits, 5 extra base hits, and one home run. She had 19 RBIs, and 17 runs scored.
Samantha Swinson – The senior leader in 18 games led the team with 24 goals, 11 assists and 59 points. She averaged 3.3 points per game, took 70 shots or 3.9 shots per game on scoring opportunities applying consistent pressure on opponents.
Abbey Stengel – Another senior leader in 19 games contributed 16 goals, 10 assists for a total of 42 points. She took 53 shots on goal averaging 2.8 per game.
Anna-Kate Jackson – The junior in 19 games had 15 goals and 5 assists for a total of 35 points. She took 29 shots on goal averaging a high percentage scoring rate of 65.5 percent for the season.
Kamryn Browder – The third senior in her final season in 16 games scored 12 goals, 8 assists for a total of 32 points. She took 38 shots on goal averaging 2.4 shots per game.