Madison Cartano – Mustangs Ahead
(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL)- On Friday May 24, the LRHS softball team lost 3-0 to Winter Springs in the class 8A state final.
The game featured two nationally ranked, undefeated teams at the Jackie Robinson Training Center at Historic Dodgertown in Vero Beach. After finishing 6-0 in the district the Mustangs went into the game ranked first in the state.
Junior Rachel Monroe said the result will motivate the team next year.
“Although we did not get the outcome we were hoping for, we are going to come back stronger and hungrier than ever next year. This will be my final year wearing a Mustang uniform and I’m looking forward to making it count.”
Mustangs coach T.J. Goelz said he was proud of the team despite the loss.
“It was either going to be a really great year or a legendary year,” he said . “We were just a little bit short of that.”
Sophomore Jillian Herbst agreed.
“We came short of our goal at the end but we had a great season,” she said. “We will be remembered in the school as the team to break the record of how many wins in one softball season and being recognized as the number one team ranked in the country. If you think we were hungry for rings this season just wait and see for next year.”
Junior Kali Reis urged fans to focus on the season’s successes, not the disappointments.
“Our trip to Vero Beach was an experience. Our season didn’t end how we had hoped, but we still had an outstanding season winning all but one game,” she said. “In the championship game we faced a pitcher who is committed to Ole Miss. She was very successful in stopping our offense which is unusual. However, Winter Springs was able to score runs and we did not. It was disappointing to lose but we are all trying to focus on the positives of the season.”
Instead, the 31-0 Bears, ranked fourth nationally by MaxPreps, triumphed behind the pitching of junior Aynslie Furbush, who pitched a one-hit shutout with one walk and four strikeouts.