Softball: Broomfield carrying BoCo flag into loaded 5A tournament

  • Jonathan Castner / For

    Broomfield's Taylor Gilmore pitches during Saturday's regional tournament. The Eagles are the No. 3 seed in this week's Class 5A state tournament.

  • Jonathan Castner / For

    Silver Creek's Morgan Cook connects with a pitch during Saturday's regional tournament. The Raptors are a No. 10 seed in this week's Class 4A state tournament.

  • Jonathan Castner / For

    Broomfield's Kenzi Jackson, center is congratulated by teammates after scoring a run during Saturday's regional tournament. The Eagles are the No. 3 seed in this weekend's Class 5A state tournament.



BROOMFIELD — Paula Seifried’s Broomfield Eagles have been there. Now they just need to do that.

The Eagles went to the state tournament last year seeded No. 7 and were playing with house money. It’s a completely different feel for them this year as they get ready to go to the Aurora Sports Park as the No. 3 overall seed.

“It’s the same mind-set. We have something to do and something to take care of,” said junior pitcher Taylor Gilmore. “And we have to do that together. There is no other way to do it, but as a team.”

If they play like they have for the past month, then things should be just fine. Broomfield (16-5) has won 12 of its last 13 games dating back to early September and coasted through the Class 5A Region 4 tournament, scoring 21 runs against Fruita Monument and Rock Canyon while allowing none.

“It all depend on this week and we tend to do a lot more team stuff (this week) than we do during the season,” junior pitcher Taylor Gilmore said. “We all just get super excited for this week, but it really comes down to how we play.”

The Eagles, who open up with Pomona (16-6) — a team they beat 11-0 to open the season in August — at 12:15 on Friday, have the bats to back up Gilmore in the circle.

“It is one of the better hitting teams I have ever had 1 through 9,” Seifried said after Saturday’s regional championship. “They are going to make people beat them and they are going to do it by getting the ball in play and not striking out.”

The numbers are staggering and they were accumulated in a league that is sending five teams to the state tournament — all regional champions.

Leading the way for the Eagles is reigning player of the year Linnie Malkin. She is hitting .478 with 8 home runs, including one against Fruita, and has driven in 30. The Eagles have 10 regulars that are hitting .300 or better and junior Matti Morales is hitting .500 with 30 RBIs.

Gilmore has also been impressive at the plate, hitting .420 with seven home runs, six doubles and a team leading 33 RBIs.

“I think the girls feel like they are doing a good job and they are there for each other and it has been a lot of fun,” Seifried said. “I’m excited to see what state brings.”

Looking ahead, if Broomfield were to beat Pomona there could be a potential quarterfinal rematch with Grandview. The Eagles and Wolves played an epic extra inning affair in the semifinals last season that saw Broomfield come back with two runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to tie the game before losing in extra inning to the eventual champions.

Class 4A

The bottom half of the Class 4A bracket has all three BoCo teams represented and despite its No. 11 seed, Frederick has a favorable matchup against Tri-Valley League rival Berthoud.

The 11th-seeded Warriors (17-5-1) have beat the Spartans twice this season. Alicia Hernandez beat them 5-1 in September with a 10 strikeout performance and Brooklyn Johnson took her turn earlier this month, striking out four in a five inning 11-1 win.

In those two game, Frederick pounded out 20 hits and Mae Mitchell went 2-for-3 with two home runs and 7 RBIs in the second game.

• Second-seeded Erie (20-2), under the direction of first year coach Harold Simmons — who has been successful with the Tigers’ baseball team — arrives at Aurora Sports Park winners of their last 13 games.

Junior Rio Sanchez has been fantastic for the Tigers, who open up with No. 15 Discovery Canyon (13-9). She has pitched all but six innings this season and has struck out 166 in 139 innings. At the plate she is hitting .472 with seven home runs and 18 RBIs.

• Silver Creek returns to the state tournament for the seventh consecutive season and the Raptors are eager to avenge last years 2-1 opening round loss to Ponderosa.

The 10th-seeded Raptors (15-6-1), who open up with Windsor on Friday afternoon, have a big 1-2 punch in the lineup of senior Sheyann Ludwig (.556 BA, 13 doubles, 25 RBIs) and freshman Kayla Harper (.534 BA and 20 RBIs).

2015 CHSAA State Softball Championships

Oct. 23-24 at Aurora Sports Park

Class 5A

First round Oct. 23 (in bracket order)

No. 1 Chaparall vs. No. 16 Smoky Hill, 10 a.m.; No. 8 Chatfield vs. No. 9 Ralston Valley, 10 a.m.; No. 4 Mountain Range vs. No. 13 Arvada West, 10 a.m.; No. 5 Rocky Mountain vs. No. 12 Eaglecrest, 10 a.m.; No. 3 Broomfield vs. No. 14 Pomona, 12:15 p.m.; No. 6 Fort Collins vs. No. 11 Grandview, 12:15 p.m.; No. 2 Brighton vs. No. 15 Columbine, 12:15 p.m.; No. 7 Fossil Ridge vs. No. 10 Legned, 12;15 p.m.

Second round games begin at 2:30 p.m.; Semifinals are 10 a.m. on Oct. 24 with the championship game scheduled for 1:30 p.m.

Class 4A

First round Oct. 23 (in bracket order)

No. 1 Wheat Ridge vs. No. 16 Vista Ridge, 10 a.m.; No. 8 Falcon vs. No. 9 Pueblo West, 10 a.m.; No. 4 Mountain View vs. No. 13 Kennedy, 10 a.m.; No. 5 Air Academy vs. No. 12 Thompson Valley, 10 a.m.; No. 3 Valor Christian vs. No. 14 Pueblo South, 12:15 p.m.; No. 6 Berthoud vs. No. 11 Frederick, 12:15 p.m.; No. 2 Erie vs. No. 15 Discovery Canyon, 12:15 p.m.; No. 7 Windsor vs. No. 10 Silver Creek, 12:15 p.m.

Second round games begin at 2:30 p.m.; Semifinals are 10 a.m. on Oct. 24 with the championship game scheduled for 1:30 p.m.

Jon Yunt: or