WEIRTON — It was worth the wait.
The Weir softball team wrapped up a winning season, and the Red Riders also wrapped the West Virginia Class AA Region 1 Section 1 Championship by defeating Oak Glen, 3-2 in 10 innings.
“It means everything,” Weir first-year head coach Bob Rosnick said about winning the sectional championship. “It was the goal when we started the season. A lot of people thought it was out of reach and unattainable for us, but our girls got better every day. We play them the first game of the season, and the last game of the season. I am sure they would tell you we are two different teams.”
With the win, Weir (12-10), advances to play Magnolia in the regional tournament Thursday at Tyler Consolidated.
Rosnick was the former head baseball coach at Weir for eight seasons, and he led the Red Riders to a state championship.
“Not yet, but this is very good,” he said about whether the sectional title in softball is equal to the state title he won in baseball. “This made me very, very happy, and I had those feelings again. We won some big games in baseball, and this was a very big win here for the girls, to see their faces, and they can enjoy themselves a little bit now.”
Liz Cowden earned the win for the Red Riders. she struck out eight batters with only one walk. Cowden also won the first game. She struck out 10 without walking a batter in that game.
“Liz pitched an awesome game,” Rosnick commented. “I had two seniors, Angela (Lamp) behind the plate, and Liz on the mound. They pulled through for us. So, I am very proud of them.
Rosnick added winning the sectional championship is a big accomplishment for his girls.
“It means lot,” he said. “We haven’t won too much, like I said, over the last 14 years. I think there has only been two or three sectional titles in that time. To come in right now and win one and have a chance to go further, it means a lot. It is a confidence builder and a program builder.
“We talked from day one that they had to believe and buy into the system. A lot of things were changed. They didn’t like at first, but they went with what we were telling them, and it paid off. We talked about this day back in February, and it came true.
“It has been a good season. We have had our ups and downs, but we steadily got better every day. We were learning every day and getting better at not making the same mistakes. I am proud of them, and we are still on our way up. We aren’t not there yet, but we are on our way up.”
(Petchal can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)