Drilling excelling in freshman season

PITCH: Riley Drilling of Baldwin delivers a pitch during recent action. Drilling has been effective on the mound this season. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

PITCH: Riley Drilling of Baldwin delivers a pitch during recent action. Drilling has been effective on the mound this season. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

Baldwin pitcher: ‘I’m still getting used to the game’

BALDWIN — Riley Drilling has established herself, in her freshman season, as one of Baldwin’s top pitchers.

One of her strongest games was against Walkerville. The key was throwing strikes, she said. “I did better than in my previous game,” she said. “I need to remember the fundamentals. I tend to forget them a lot.”

This is her first year in softball.

“I’m still getting used to the game,” she said.

Drilling plays volleyball, equestrian and is a downhill skier. Baldwin is entering a co-op with Cadillac for downhill skiing next season. Currently, she’s the only one in Baldwin who ski races.

Riley’s focus is on pitching right now. She made her debut against Evart, and has continually improved.

The Panthers are playing in a district tournament on Saturday at Holton.

“I want to try to make as many strikes as I can,” Drilling said. “I have to get the ball down and in the strike zone.”

She’s been among the key Baldwin pitchers, along with junior Makayla George.

“I like the speed of it,” she said. “I ask Makayla questions a lot of times. I look up to her a lot. The same with volleyball.”

When the season ends, Drilling hopes to work more on her pitching with George.

Drilling has also been working on her hitting. She also plays outfield.

Meanwhile, junior Shay Scott has made her debut at third base this season for Baldwin’s softball team with successful results.

“I’ve been at third base, and first base, but mostly third,” she said. “I love third base. I’ve been playing it for years. It’s my passion. With my talent, it’s where I can help the team out the most. I have a good arm, good distance. It’s where the team can all hear me.”

Defensively, Scott has had a strong season, especially with her arm.

“I’ve been using it pretty well,” she said. “I’ve been getting girls out. I’ve learned how to get my feet down pat (for the throw).”

A major highlight of the season was a doubleheader sweep of Walkerville.

“We kept our hopes up high, and we kept our spirits high,” she said. ‘We learned as long as we’re happy with each other and go out and have fun, there’s no way we can lose.

“From the first of March to now, the improvement has been amazing. We went from being discouraged and making mistakes only young teams would make.”

Scott has been happy with her hitting.

“Usually, every time I can get a hit,” she said. “My problem is I always want to hit so bad that I swing too soon. The key is patience, let the ball get to you first.”

Scott would like to hit a home run before the season ends.

“You have to take a good pitch, take your time and go for the swing,” she said.

avatar

Posted by John Raffel

John is a sports reporter with the Pioneer as well as the Herald Review and The Lake County Star. He also coordinates the weekly Pioneer sports outdoors page. He can be reached at (231) 592-8356 or by email at jraffel@pioneergroup.com.

Leave a Reply