Despite setting school records and leading the state in several pitching categories, an Aquinas softball player has been flying under the radar this season.
Sophomore Kallen Leeseberg owns a 2.31 ERA in 22 starts, which is among the best in the area.
But looking at her peripherals is where the numbers jump out. Leeseberg has 242 strikeouts in 121 innings, a rate of 14 punch-outs per seven innings.
Leeseberg has 14 starts this season in which she struck out 10 or more. Her highest strikeout total is 19 against Glascock County on Sept. 20 in a game that went seven innings, meaning she struck out all but two batters she faced.
Even when she gives up runs, Leeseberg manages to rack up strikeouts. She has four starts this year in which she allowed four runs or more, and she recorded double-digit strikeouts in three of them.
“She holds pretty much every pitching record at Aquinas,” coach Scott Harrison said. “She’s thrown every pitch for two years now, and she’s only a sophomore.
“It’s the best season of any pitcher we’ve had at Aquinas. You just couldn’t do any better as a pitcher.”
Leeseberg has led Aquinas to a 15-7 record, including 2-2 in Region 7A-A. The team is awaiting results for the final power ranking that will determine its place in the state tournament.
STAYING HOME: Following a convincing doubleheader sweep of Screven County in the Region 3-AA Tournament, Harlem softball will begin a new chapter to its season this week.
The Lady Bulldogs beat the Lady Gamecocks 10-0 and 4-2 on Oct. 3, including a combined 10 no-hit innings from freshman Amber Garrett. Harlem won the region championship and claimed home-field advantage in the Class AA State Tournament.
Harlem will play host to McIntosh County Academy on Wednesday in the first round. The Lady Buccaneers are 21-6 this season, including 10-4 in Region 2E-AA.
Greenbrier’s softball team is in a similar situation to Harlem, sweeping its way to home-field advantage in the state tournament. The Lady Wolfpack beat Houston County, and Jones County twice, to win the Region 2-AAAAA Tournament, earning an 11-0 region record. Kirsten Titus won all three tournament games to improve to 18-4.
Greenbrier plays host to Richmond Hill in the first round of the state tournament on Wednesday.
Two teams lost chances at playing host to the first round with defeats in region tournaments. Evans lost to Houston County and Jones County in the Region 2-AAAAA Tournament, putting the Lady Knights on the road in the state tournament. They will play Effingham County on Wednesday.
After earning a doubleheader sweep against Statesboro in the first round of the Region 3B-AAAA Tournament, Cross Creek lost in the second round to South Effingham 3-2. A consolation win over Burke County has the Lady Razorbacks in the state tournament.