By Sam Ojeda / Sports Editor

The Hutchinson Community College softball team was rolling going into last weekend’s games. The Blue Dragons had a 12-game winning streak heading into Colby. Although their winning streak came to end that weekend, they are still one of the most consistent teams in the NJCAA. The 28-5 Blue Dragons are now ranked 15th in the country after the doubleheader split.

The offense has been a dominant powerhouse this season. The team batting average is .370 which is fourth best in Jayhawk Conference. Their 35 home runs and 289 RBIs are also fourth in the conference. 

This upcoming weekend’s matchup is the most important of the season for them. Their 16-2 conference record is tied atop the KJCCC West Division with their Saturday opponent, Butler. The Blue Dragons already split with the Grizzlies earlier this season at Fun Valley. They traveled to El Dorado on Wednesday for another two games. A split left the Blue Dragons level with Butler in the loss column.

Hutchinson coach Jaime Rose said she is confident her team can keep the steam rolling.

“We simply need to continue doing what we have been doing.” Rose said. “Focus on one game at a time.” 

The Blue Dragons have been consistent all season and show no signs of slowing down. Preparation is important to a team’s success.

“We must focus on the willingness to prepare and having the mindset that we will win,” Rose said. 

A cohesive unit tends to make success easier, but the junior college softball season is long and Rose wants to prepare her team for that.

“It takes grit and having everyone working toward a common goal,” Rose said.

Sophomore Madison Grimes is seen as a team leader for HutchCC. The super sophomore from Andale said she sees how good the Blue Dragons can be.

“We have so much talent on this team,” Grimes said. “Anyone can play anywhere and when someone is struggling we are always trying to keep them up.” 

Grimes is in the same boat as Rose.

“We have so much grit and are always willing to do anything to get a win,” Grimes said. 

Grit seems to be the most driving factor for HutchCC. The Blue Dragons have had to scrap out many wins and use that grit to get a good result. 

“We don’t care who we are playing, we are going to fight every game for our pitchers, coaches, and team,” Grimes said. “We always have each other’s backs, no matter the situation. We play for each other every game instead of playing for ourselves.”

It’s a talented team with a deep talent pool.

“It’s not one person carrying this team, every game different people step up and I think that’s what makes this team so great,” Grimes said.

Finishing the season, HutchCC softball has a tough task ahead. The Blue Dragons play some of their toughest conference games before postseason, including matchups with third-place Barton and fifth-place Dodge City. It is going to take all facets of the game and a full team effort to accomplish what Grimes, Rose, and the rest of the team want to get done.

Views: 483

Share this story: