Basalt’s best softball season in school history ends with a thud |

Basalt’s best softball season in school history ends with a thud

Nate PetersonThe Aspen TimesAspen, CO Colorado

AURORA, Colo. Here was the dilemma for Basalt’s softball team: How to view the best season in program history through the lens of Friday’s disappointing season-ending loss?Head coach Bruce Matherly was blunt after Faith Christian pounded his team, 23-0, in the first round of the 3A state playoffs.”We got thrashed,” Matherly said. “It was disappointing to play so poorly on such a big stage. We had parents and administrators coming down and unfortunately we just didn’t play well.”Knowing his players, however, Matherly said one tough loss wouldn’t overshadow what Basalt accomplished this season.The Longhorns finished 12-5, won their first league title with two thrilling come-from-behind wins in a doubleheader against Gunnison and were ranked in the state’s top 10 for a brief stretch.”Obviously as a coach, it was a great year,” Matherly said. “And the best news is we don’t lose anybody.”The Longhorns will certainly be heard from next fall, with ace pitcher Alexa Aitken returning for her senior year along with starting second baseman Abby King.Aitken finished with a .362 ERA and 79 strikeouts in 68 innings – putting her in elite company in 3A.Also returning will be juniors-to-be Jamie Matherly, Kenzie Kuhn, Jessie Anderson, Lane Calabro and Kira Selucky. Basalt also started two freshman: outfielders Connor Adams and Katie King.Matherly led all of 3A in hitting in 2008 with a .689 batting average and 21 RBI.Aitken had the third-highest batting average in 3A, at .616.”That’s the worst we’ve been beaten in the four years that we played,” Matherly said. “We’ll use it as motivation for next year. I think the girls know they can play better . We’ll have higher expectations across the board.”

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