Athletes of the Week: Sumner-Fredericksburg Softball - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Athletes of the Week: Sumner-Fredericksburg Softball

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SUMNER (KWWL) -

With Kelsey Nilges controlling the mound -- and MaKaya Henniges tearing up at the plate -- life has been good for the Sumner-Fredericksburg softball team as they look to advance to the state tournament for the second straight season.



Kevin Bergman | Sumner-Fredericksburg Head Coach, "The girls want to get back, they know how much fun they've had at state, and it's been a goal of theirs since the beginning of the season."

To get there takes a strong pitching presence -- and senior Kelsey Nilges has been just that.for 5 seasons --

two weeks ago -- she joined an elite group with her 100th career win -- but unlike most hundred game winner -- the Cougar senior doesn't have many strike-outs to her name.
Kelsey Nilges | Co-Athlete of the Week, "It's her control.  I think she's got 5, 6 walks for the year.  She's got very good control.  She knows where to put the ball and has worked very hard at it,

"It's a huge accomplishment to reach 100, and it's not about me, it's about the team.  It's not about going up there and striking out every batter.  It's about letting hitters hit the ball knowing I have a strong team behind me to make the plays."

The Cougars power at the plate comes from senior MaKaya Henniges.  On Monday -- she slugger her 9th home run of the year -- putting her 4th overall in Class 2-A --

While her 55 RBI's are a major reason this team is a favorite to make it back to Fort Dodge --

"MaKaya, I love it when she's up to bat, you never know what's going to happen.  She hits the ball really hard, and when she makes good solid, contact, it's hard to stop her.  It's not fun to be in front of one of the balls when she makes good contact."

But both Kelsey and MaKaya are quick to point out the success is all due to the team, whether defensively or offensively -- In fact 8 of the Cougars 9 starters are hitting at better than a 300 average --
MaKaya Henniges | Co-Athlete of the Week, "All the way through we're solid.  I can depend on the #9 hitter, she is on base all the time.  Our whole line-up is strong.

And as long as that line-up keeps clicking -- a return trip to state -- should be in the books.

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