Nearly 48 hours after seeing Kodiak softball’s run at the Division II state tournament end before it even got, coach Tom Bolen reflected on the season.
“We entered this season not knowing if we would even play, compete or complete a season. We are all just fortunate and lucky enough to say that we had softball and spring sports in general,” Bolen said.
Kodiak’s aspirations of claiming the program’s second softball title and first since 2008 were dashed on Friday at the Division II State Championships at Cartee Fields in Anchorage.
After opening bracket play with an 8-3 victory over North Pole, Kodiak fell to Juneau 15-4 and Delta 8-4 to tie for fifth place with Northern Lights Conference rival Homer. Kodiak finished with a 17-7 record.
The loss to Delta was shocking, considering the Bears had topped the Huskies 18-9 in Thursday’s pool play.
“We failed to do it with our bats,” Bolen said. “We could not get the hits going against Delta.”
Kodiak generated 10 hits off Delta pitcher Alyssa Hooton. The Bears couldn’t cash in, stranding eight runners on base.
Delta built an 8-2 lead after the fifth inning. Bolen said miscues on defense contributed to the Huskies moving on.
“If I had to pick one word that shadows over our weekend — errors,” Bolen said. “We made some costly errors ... and it is devastating and tough to overcome when you are giving runs away.”
Cyana Medrano and Anastasia Solomon paced Kodiak’s offense with two hits apiece.
Ashlyn Bolen, Leslie Spear and Luana Farmer each drove in a run.
Shanoah Spear gave up five runs on eight hits in 2 2/3 innings while striking out two and walking two.
Leslie Spear fanned five in 3 2/3 innings of relief. She allowed two hits and two runs.
“I told the girls they have nothing to be disappointed about,” Bolen said. “Playing against Southeast teams, you have to develop a special team if you want to compete and win a state title.
“Our season is more about wins and losses. I enjoyed every minute with the girls ... we played great this year, and I think we developed some new superstars that are going to help this program.”
This was the final state appearance for seniors Leslie Spear, Medrano, Teanna Amodo and Shalliah Capili.
Leslie Spear was named to the all-state team.
KODIAK 8, NORTH POLE 3
Alison Narog pushed Kodiak to victory in Friday’s opening game.
Narog went 3 for 4 with a double and two RBIs. She scored twice.
Capili drove in a pair of runs on a double in the fourth that gave Kodiak a 7-2 cushion.
Shanoah Spear was dominant in the circle, striking out 11, which included five straight from the first to the second innings. The freshman scattered 10 hits and walked four — two intentional.
North Pole won three straight elimination games — 21-20 over Homer, 24-21 over Delta and 10-2 over Ketchikan — to reach the championship game.
Juneau ended North Pole’s run with a 16-4 victory.
“We woke up a monster in them,” Bolen said.
JUNEAU 15, KODIAK 4
The Crimson Bears jumped out to a 15-0 lead and ended the game in the fifth inning via the mercy rule.
Kodiak scored four times in the fifth.
Narog collected two of Kodiak’s four hits. Shanoah Spear and Ashlyn Bolen tallied the other singles.
Homer 13, Delta 4
Kodiak 8, North Pole 3
Ketchikan 12, Homer 10
Juneau 15, Kodiak 4
Delta 8, Kodiak 4
North Pole 21, Homer 20
Juneau 13, Ketchikan 12
North Pole 24, Delta 21
North Pole 10, Ketchikan 2
Juneau 16, North Pole 4
East 11, Colony 3
Chugiak 19, West Valley 1
East 10, Dimond 5
South 7, Chugiak 4
Chugiak 15, Colony 0
Dimond 14, West Valley 0
South 4, East 3
Chugiak 10, Dimond 6
Chugiak 6, East 3
South 8, Chugiak 2