Candice Van Horn was having another solid season playing with the Coppin State softball team but the sophomore saw the season stop short when she suffered a fracture, dislocation of the middle finger on her right hand.
She had surgery on March 18 at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore and is expected to be out four to six weeks.
Van Horn (Hazleton Area) was hitting .346 (9-for-26) with four doubles, four RBI and a team-high 14 runs. The team’s shortstop (three errors in 44 chances) also pitched two innings of scoreless ball in relief.
“Candice is our best player and she also has become a leader this year,” coach Larry Hineline said. “She is a tremendous baserunner, has more confidence at the plate and more confidence in the field. She is an all-around great player and the player who is our straw that stirs the drink, as Reggie Jackson used to say about himself.”
The minimum she will be out is four weeks.
“She has a couple of pins in her finger but we are hoping for a quick healing process,” Hineline said. “If I can get her back by the first of May in time for our last series of the year and then for the MEAC (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) tourney that would be ideal.
“She is a tough kid. She wants to be out there and I’m hoping that outweighs any fear or pain she may experience when she returns.”
The Eagles are 5-14 overall and 0-2 in MEAC play.
BAKER FITS RIGHT IN: The Kutztown baseball team lost four of its top hitters from last season so the addition of junior college transfer Carson Baker is a key for the Golden Bears.
Baker (Lake-Lehman) has started 14 games in left field and is hitting .200 (9-for-48) with three doubles, eight runs and nine RBI to help the team get off to an 11-4 start with a 2-0 mark in PSAC play.
“Carson has added an experienced and powerful bat to our lineup,” coach Chris Blum said. “He comes from a winning tradition that brings instant credibility and an understanding of what it takes to be a successful player and leader to the younger guys.”
The coach also adds that it’s a pleasure to have Baker on the squad.
“Carson is respectable, mature, hard-working and easy to coach,” Blum said.
OSTRANDER HELPING OUT: Junior Lisa Ostrander (Pittston Area) is doing the job at the plate and in the field for the Keystone softball team. She’s hitting .333 (11-for-25) with two doubles, three RBI and five runs. She’s had two hits in four of the team’s 10 games.
“Lisa has been a big help at the plate coming through during some clutch situations,” coach Renee Barrows said. “She is a solid player that I can depend on to perform well.”
Ostrander is also helping out in the field.
“During our last two games in Myrtle Beach our center fielder injured her ankle and Lisa stepped into the position and did the job,” Barrows said.
Freshman Ariel Ardo (Pittston Area) is also on the squad but has seen limited action to date.
“I have some high hopes for Ariel over the next couple of years,” Barrows said. “I think she could contribute at the plate by the end of this season and potentially see some outfield time.”
The Giants are 6-4 overall and 1-2 in the Colonial State Collegiate Conference.
GOOD START FOR RUBASKY: Freshman Hannah Rubasky (Nanticoke) is batting .333 (8-for-24) with a double and five RBI for the Concordia (N.Y.) softball team. She has also made four starts in the circle and is 1-3. She has worked 26 innings and has given up 54 hits and 34 runs, 17 earned, with three walks and 13 strikeouts.
“Hannah is a hard worker and very dedicated to her craft,” coach Kathy Laoutaris said. “Her pitching stats do not represent her effort to date.”
The Clippers are young with eight freshmen on the squad and are just 2-9 in the early going.
“We got off to a slow start but we are working very hard and improving daily,” Laoutaris said. “Hannah is a great young lady and we look forward to a successful four years from her.”
HAMPSEY PITCHING IN: Freshman Jamie Hampsey (Tunkhannock) is pitching for the Scranton softball team. She has made four starts and has three complete games. Her record is 1-3 and she has a 5.52 earned run average.
In 19 innings, she has given up just 13 hits and 17 runs, 15 earned. She has walked 28 and has 19 strikeouts. She also is hitting .286 (2-for-7) with and RBI for the 2-4 Royals.
The right-hander had a solid effort in a 3-1 loss to King’s last Thursday. She worked six innings and gave up three hits and three runs, two earned, while walking eight and striking out seven.
“Jamie’s work ethic and commitment to improving show a lot about her character,” coach Mia Collarini said. “Her command has been superb. I believe that with more experience and innings under her belt, Jamie will be a force to be reckoned with in the Landmark Conference.”
ROOSA, O’HARA FALL SHORT: Bloomsburg senior Josh Roosa (Crestwood) and Columbia senior Jake O’Hara (Crestwood) competed in the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships last weekend in Des Moines, Iowa.
Roosa, competing at 149 pounds, lost in the first round, scored a 4-1 decision in the first consolation round and was then eliminated in the second consolation round 6-2 by Nick Brascetta of Virginia Tech. Roosa finished the season with a 23-7 record.
O’Hara, wrestling at 157 pounds, also finished 1-2 in the tourney and was eliminated in the consolations 3-0 to Harvard’s Walter Peppelman. It was his third close loss to Peppelman this season. O’Hara finished 23-9 on the season.
MASELKEVICH ON THE LANES: Freshman Kayla Maselkevich (Hazleton Area) and her 13th ranked Kutztown women’s bowling team were beaten 4-2 in a best-of-seven semifinal match to St. Francis (Pa.) in the Northeast Conference Championships last Sunday in Elmwood Park, N.J.
The Golden Bears (76-41) now await word to see if they have qualified for the NCAA Championships (April 10-13 in Detroit). The eight teams will be announced Wednesday. Kutztown has already qualified for the United States Bowling Congress Team and Individual Championships (April 16-20)
Maselkevich, a right-hander, is averaging 188.70 in 20 games and six events. Her frame average (18.619) is fifth best on the team.