Athlete of the Week: Altoona Softball
With all the bad weather this spring, it's been hard for softball teams to get on the diamond. Altoona has been fortunate to play five games and win them all. The latest coming on Tuesday , a 9-1 over perennial conference and state power house Chippewa Falls McDonell.
So what according to Head Coach Chris Maurina has led to this nice start for the Rails?
"Our pitching has been very good this year. In those five games we have three or four walks total. We are swinging the bat. If we are striking out we are striking out swinging. We have some girls with power that are showing it this year and our fielding has been very good too."
The past two years, Altoona has made the sectional semifinals. In 2017 they fell to Bloomer, and last year Prescott ended their season. This year, the Rails are using those losses as motivation to hopefully move towards a state tournament berth.
Senior outfielder Karly Maurina says it all started before they got on the diamond this year.
"We were working really hard in the off-season and we knew this year we didn't want to end how it did last year, we want to go really far. We know we want to win."
Junior Kate Harris echoed Maurina's statement.
"I think we are really motivated, all of us really want to get to state, so hopefully we can do it. We just have to play our game and try to pull out those wins"
Karly Maurina hopes playing in the Cloverbelt can help their goal of making a deep playoff run.
"We have a good conference and that is a good thing. You don't want to just sweep through conference and get to the playoffs and you are just clueless. We have competition in conference and in for the playoffs which helps us a lot."
Chris Maurina also knows the benefit of playing their tough schedule.
"If we do well in conference we know we have beat some really good teams. Beating McDonell is a good start, Thorp will be very tough as well and Stanley-Boyd is off to a good start. We are going to have good competition the whole way through"