Watterson Roundup: Eagles softball team fitting together like a glove

Jarrod Ulrey
ThisWeek group
Freshman Alex Mosholder has been one of Watterson's top players early in the season. The Eagles, who are led by first-year coach Shawn Bray, split their first eight games.

Despite being one of four freshmen on the Watterson softball team, Alex Mosholder entered this season looking to fill a key role in the lineup.

One thing she’s found enjoyable is how quickly she’s fit in on a team with just three seniors. 

“People have been welcoming and everyone’s coming together,” said Mosholder, who plays second base and center field. “Everyone is really good at their positions and we trust in our pitchers.” 

Mosholder put together a five-hit performance in an 18-4 win over Dublin Jerome on April 7 and was hitting .540 through her first five prep games. 

Watterson, which was 4-4 before opening CCL action April 14 against DeSales, also has a freshman among its pitchers in Mary Gamble. 

Junior Amelia Pepe is the lone returning pitcher, and junior Julie Hall is an Olentangy transfer who also has logged key innings. 

One thing that’s helped the Eagles’ pitching staff find its way early on has been the return of senior catcher Rachel Reuter, who was hitting .600 through her first five games. 

It’s been a season of transition for the Eagles, who also have a new coach in Shawn Bray. 

“I came in with a lot of question marks because we came in with a lot of youth,” Bray said. “We have to find the right fit, so I think we’re ahead of schedule from where we started at and what we have. The future is bright for us, but currently we have a buzz-saw schedule moving forward and the pitching (we’ll face is) only going to get better. 

“I think the CCL is up for grabs. We have a really good shot at winning the league and that’s one of our goals, along with trying to get back to the district finals.” 

Watterson, which went 17-10 and was a district runner-up in 2019, has leaned on a small group of veterans that includes seniors Natalie Funge (LF) and Caroline Peck (3B) and junior Anna Emswiler (1B) along with Reuter. 

“I feel like we have a lot of good chemistry together even though we have a lot of younger players,” Reuter said. “We only have three seniors, but I feel like we’ve come together as a team. We have four freshmen on the team and it’s been a good bond.” 

Reuter, who hit .377 with a team-high four home runs in 2019, has committed to Ashland as a catcher. 

“I’ve been catching ever since fourth grade when no one else wanted to be the catcher,” she said. “At first I wasn’t the best at it, but I’ve come a long way. After everything got canceled last year, I couldn’t wait until this year. With coach Bray being in his first season, he’s a great coach and he’s brought us to that next level. 

“(Our pitchers) are ready and they’re all just trying to get better. (Ashland has) a very young program, too. I went there and just loved it instantly. The whole team was just so welcoming and after I met with my coaches, I knew it was where I wanted to be and it was a perfect fit for me.” 

Girls lacrosse team 

building consistency 

First-year girls lacrosse coach Eileen Barrett has been slowly seeing the type of progress she expects. 

Barrett took over last spring before the season was canceled. Prior to that, the Eagles had been coached by Karen Bailey in 2016 and 2017, by Joe Gavin in 2018 and by A.J. English in 2019. 

“It’s taking a little longer than I’ve wanted it to, but we have girls where the majority of them have never played together,” Barrett said. “We have three different classes mixed in and they also didn’t have a consistent program before. They had a different coach every year for four years before I got here.  

“Things are actually going very well. We have a lot of talent on our team, so we’re trying to figure out the best way to mesh everybody together.” 

In a 10-9 win over Cincinnati Indian Hill on April 10, junior attacker Kate Geswein scored the game-winning goal during the final minute and senior goalie Aubrey Bower made 16 saves. 

Junior attackers Zoe Coleman and Makenna Twombly have been other key members of the offense, with senior Caroline Slater, junior Isabella Eramo, sophomore Maggie Best and freshman Avery McClain playing key roles on defense. 

Junior Brooke Biagi has been the team’s top faceoff midfielder. 

Watterson was 5-2 after beating Bexley 16-12 on April 13. 

“Zoe Coleman and Makenna Twombly kind of do their own little thing,” Barrett said. “Makenna had six goals (against Indian Hill) and Zoe had a lot of those assists, which I love seeing. Our defense has been doing amazing with slides, interceptions (and) turnovers. Once we turn it over on attack, our defense gets it back quickly.” 

Boys lacrosse team 

finding its rhythm

With a 17-11 win over 2019 Division I state champion Dublin Coffman on April 10, the boys lacrosse team improved to 4-2. 

Junior attacker Jack Henry had six goals and two assists and junior attacker Chris Sauter Jr. had four goals and two assists against the Shamrocks. 

Watterson opened with a 7-6 overtime loss to Worthington Kilbourne on March 19 and won its next three before losing to Olentangy Orange 5-4 on March 31. 

Freshman Braxton Rundio also has taken on a key role at attacker. 

“We just finally found our gear (against Coffman) and everybody had peak performance,” Henry said. “It’s a good time to start to jell. We’re just working on trying to break in the freshmen a little bit, making sure all the players are going to be ready by the end of the season.” 

Coach Chris Sauter also has been pleased with a defense that includes senior long-stick midfielder Henry Blevins and junior defender Kevin Hinsman. 

“We’ve had two one-goal losses, but we’re coming together,” coach Sauter said. “We were expecting some hiccups here at the beginning of the year and we’re hoping we smoothed out some of the edges of losing a season and hopefully are getting ready for the long stretch of the season.” 

julrey@thisweeknews.com 

@UlreyThisWeek