Story by Jill Harry
The Franklin Knights softball team is heading into the final week of the regular season with all their pre-season goals completed or within reach.
Be the champs of their region – done.
Finish the season undefeated – 16-0 with three games left.
Repeat as District 10 4A winners – currently ranked number one.
“We had a pretty successful season so far,” said first-year head coach Chad Hoobler.
So successful that they have only gone the full seven innings five times.
They have scored nearly 200 runs already while allowing their opponents only 25.
It’s a system that seems to be helping their ace starting pitcher, junior Trinity Edge, thrive. She is ranked second among all pitchers in District 10, according to the Erie Times-News.
But she isn’t Franklin’s only standout player.
“I’m blessed with nine solid ball players who work together as a team.”
Looking over all the stats available on the Erie Times-News website it’s easy to find evidence of that claim. Six of the players are listed within the top 20 rankings in different offensive categories prior to Thursday’s game.
“I don’t remember a team that has been as dominant. This team has been sheer power at the plate,” he said.
Hoobler is ranked top in the district for runs scored at 29. Sophomore Rilee Hanna and freshman Gabriella Laderer are tied for eighth with 22 each.
Laderer leads the team with doubles at 7 (seventh in the district), home runs with 3 (14th in the district) and RBIs with 25 (sixth in the district).
And freshman Abigail Boland leads the team with triples, tied for 11th with a large number of players throughout the district.
“I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how hard-working of a team this is,” coach Hoobler said.
And the work has played off.
Heading into the last three games of the regular season, one regional and two non-regional, Hoobler says the team plans to focus on improving more each day.
“We just want to take it one game at a time from here and continue getting better.”