For a team with eight brand new players, the U12 Duncan RiverCats showed just how far they’ve come this year by winning gold medals in back-to-back softball tournaments last month.
“The girls are really gelling together,” head coach Kevin Olender said. “You would never think this was a new team, the way they come to practice; they come to the park ready to learn and have fun.”
The RiverCats went undefeated at the Cordova Bay Tournament in early May. They blazed through the round robin, beating Parksville 13-5, Langford 15-14 and Saanich 14-4 to earn a bye to the semifinals.
Mya Rosenlind pitched brilliantly to earn the win as the RiverCats downed Central Saanich 13-5 in the semis. Katie Murphy followed that with a nine-strikeout performance in a 14-5 win in the final.
“The girls played great all weekend,” Olender said.
Things didn’t go quite as smoothly at the Sooke Tournament on May 24 and 25, but the RiverCats still emerged with the gold.
The Duncan team split its two Saturday morning games, beating Sooke 12-9 on nine hits, including triples by Marissa St. Amand and Brooklyn Lang, and doubles by Rosenlind, Kevannah Thorne and Anna Beauchamp, then losing 8-7 to Langford Yellow despite a strong outing from pitcher Mackenzie Wildy.
The RiverCats definitely came to play on Sunday, kicking off with 19 hits in a 20-7 win over Langford Blue. St. Amand, Lang and Thorne all went 4-for-4, with doubles for St. Amand and Lang. Sierra Screaton was 3-for-3 with a double, while Rosenlind and Wildy split pitching duties.
That propelled Duncan to the semifinals where they beat Sooke in extra innings thanks to a two-run double by Rylee Smith and shutdown pitching by Wildy. The RiverCats played Langford Yellow in the tournament final and scored early and often to win 15-5.