Maddie Lahr gets an out at first base during game one of Maquoketa Valley’s doubleheader with Calamus-Wheatland in Delhi, June 17.

It wasn’t about wins and losses for the Maquoketa Valley softball team this year. It was more about doing the right things at the right time and having the correct attitude and giving 100% effort so the wins will come in the future.

That’s what the youth movement of the Wildcats was all about, led by Macey Kintzle who finished her first year as the head softball coach with an overall record of 17-23 and 11-13 in the Tri-Rivers Conference.

“It was an awesome season. I couldn’t have asked for a better team to coach. It was fun to come to the field, our field, every day. They are a good group of girls who grew so much during this season. That was awesome to watch,” said Kintzle. “A lot of our growth had to do with our two seniors. They really stepped up and are going to be missed because they were leaders all year long and that’s exactly what these young girls needed. They taught the younger girls how to be leaders and I can already see that happening. The underclassmen are taking control of things that you normally don’t see freshman and sophomores taking control of at practice and during the game.”

Those two seniors are Maddy Anderegg (43 hits; .315; 29 runs) and Maddie Lahr (32 hits, .281; 19 RBIs) and they set the example that several underclassmen quickly followed.

Many players picked up good habits as they started to develop and understand their role on the team. Sophomores Taya Tucker (46 hits; .383; 38 runs; 32 RBIs; seven home runs; 20 stolen bases), Payton Beaman (25 hits; .263; 21 runs), and Krista Ries (14 hits, .246, 16 RBIs) grew the most, even though Beaman was out for 10 days near the end of the season with an injury.

Rylie Alrich worked hard and established herself as the ace of the squad. The junior was 9-10 for the season, had 50 strikeouts, gave up 81 earned runs in 120 innings for an ERA of 4.73. Allie Knipper, another junior, battled to a 5-8 record throwing 57 innings with an ERA of 5.40. Beaman also worked in the circle and was 3-5 with an ERA of 4.94.

Knipper also improved with the bat (35 hits; .315; 25 runs; 14 SB) establishing herself as a lead-off batter.

Brooke Elgin, a junior, proved she is the team’s top third baseman (30 hits; .400) while three freshmen also showed that they deserved playing time. Leah Ries (28 hits, .289, 24 runs, 14 SB) showed enough versatility that she deserves to be an everyday player. Carissa Sabers showcased her speed (14 runs, nine SB) and Kendra Hillers’ defensive skills in the outfield will keep them in the mix.