Blaine softball looks to Lyric Berry to lead the way

Blaine’s Lyric Berry pitched a complete game in the Borderites 4 – 2 loss to Mount Baker last week. Head coach Alisa Burk said Berry’s pitching will be vital to the team. Photo by Oliver Lazenby.

By Oliver Lazenby

The Borderite softball season is underway, and the team has five returning seniors and no major holes. Much of the team’s success, however, will hinge on one person: Lyric Berry.

Berry, a senior, is the only pitcher on the team with much experience. She was a go-to pitcher last year, and head coach Alisa Burk said she worked hard during the off-season.

“Lyric Berry is going to carry us,” Burk said. “She’s grown so much and she’s gotten so tough mentally that she’s ready and she’s willing to accept this challenge.”

The Borderites’ first game, at home against Mount Baker High School on March 16, was a test for Berry. Though the Borderites lost 4–2, she pitched a complete game and proved to be a threat all around.

“She stayed strong every pitch, all the way through,” she added. That’s been a challenge for her in the past, Burk said. Berry also got on base every time she picked up the bat. She made it to first base three times on bunts. She also hit a double, drove in a run, stole a base and scored a run.

Berry wasn’t the only productive hitter against Mount Baker. Blaine nearly matched the Mountaineers for hits, but couldn’t overcome Mount Baker’s early lead. The Mountaineers scored twice in the first inning and again in the second and fifth innings. Blaine scored one run in the first inning.

Blaine’s Keeley Barthlow started the bottom of the seventh inning with a base hit. Pinch runner Riley Weinkauf stole second base, and then made it to third when Holly Siebol hit a single to center field. Berry drove in a run with a bunt single to make the score 4–2.

Blaine’s hitting streak stopped there, and Mount Baker relief pitcher Tyler Miles shut Blaine down with the tying run on base.

“I have nothing negative to say about the game. The only thing that didn’t go our way was putting the hits together and scoring the runs we needed,” Burk said. “Mount Baker always has a pretty solid program. They’re a decent team.”

Though the Borderites could use a deeper bullpen, they have plenty of experience elsewhere on the field. All but one infielder is back from last season. Caitlin Butters, a junior, is the lone new infielder, at third base.

At bat, Burk expects her seniors to lead the way. The team’s five seniors are Berry, Barthlow, Daphne Rojas, Alyssa Starcer and Brittany Carrington.

The Borderites’ next game is Thursday, March 23, at home against Squalicum.

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