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West Valley City Journal

Rainy weather hasn’t dampened the Wolverines successful softball season

May 08, 2023 03:46PM ● By Greg James

The spring weather has not held the Wolverines softball team back this season even though they have practiced several times inside their gymnasium. (Photo courtesy of Heather Carlson)

The Hunter High School softball team is dedicated to excellence on the diamond. Despite several rainouts, which have severely hindered their ability to practice and hone their skills, the team has seen success so far this season. 

“It has been a little bit difficult,” Wolverines head coach Heather Carlson said about the spring weather they have had to deal with. “We have been good about covering the field. It has been some crazy weather. This team has been resilient. When we were inside we were focused on getting things done. We have made the best of it.”

The players have accepted the challenge laid out by their coaches and have risen to the occasion. They’ve managed to put some impressive stats up, especially at the plate. Freshman Kenya Lapuaho has been an anchor in the batting order with a batting average of over .600. At the same time, senior sluggers Landry Gold, Trinidi Gasu, and junior Ivy Den Boer have all shown an impressive power stroke with two home runs each.

“Early in the season, we have been hitting with power. This year has definitely been unusual. They have attributed that to reps and hitting drills in the gym. They have been dialed in on pitches they want to hit,” Carlson said.

The Wolverines have belted 12 home runs in their first eight games.

“We have really been coming together as a team. They have been super unselfish. They play whatever position I ask. Some have played in places they have never played before. The girls have said they will play anywhere, whatever the team needs,” Carlson said.

The team has also had some great outings on the mound, with sophomore Kinsley Lawrence leading the way. She has gone 2-1 this season.

“She (Lawrence) has improved from last year. She is a sophomore and has had a lot more control of her ball,” Carlson said. “Kenya is amazing she can step on the field and play anywhere. My senior first baseman (Sadie Boynton) does not let anything past her. All of my girls have improved in one way or another.”

Lapuaho was selected to join the first-ever U-15 women’s national team. She will represent the United States in the Pan Am Championship in Japan, June 2-4.

“She went to a tryout and has been working for and trying to be a better softball player. She is a great leader and has a good softball IQ. Her teammates look up to her and listen. That helps to have it coming from a teammate it carries a lot more weight,” Carlson said.

The team is looking to finish their season strong and make a run at a state championship. Their dedication and skill have been evident all season, and if they continue to play at their current level, Hunter High has a great shot at going deep into the playoffs.

“We just need to keep seeing and hitting the ball. Our defense is coming along as we continue to do that it will be awesome,” Carlson said.

This is Carlson’s eighth season as the team's head coach. At the press deadline, they were seeded 14th in the UHSAA’s ratings and have a 5-3 overall record. The state tournament is scheduled to begin May 13-15. The championship will be held at BYU on May 25 and 26. λ