Six Oconto Falls softball players earn conference honors

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Paige Krueger of Gillett/Suring makes first team
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Oconto Falls senior Emma Huberty takes a swing during a conference doubleheader against Clintonville on May 3. Huberty was one of six Panthers to make an all-conference team this spring. (Times Herald photo by Morgan Rode)

UPDATEDThe Oconto Falls High School softball team enjoyed a big spring on the diamond, eventually navigating its way to sectionals.

In conference play, the Panthers posted a 13-5 record to take third behind only Denmark and Luxemburg-Casco. Oconto Falls was rewarded with seven all-conference selections.

Leading the way were first-team players Kaelyn Allen, Emma Huberty and Josie Tolzman.

Over the course of her senior season, Huberty hit for a .368 average and got on base at a .456 clip. She drove in 23 runs, had 12 doubles and homered three times.

Huberty was the team’s primary catcher, helping guide the team’s pitching staff to a 1.60 earned run average.

“It means a lot to get all-conference this year because this season was my favorite so it’s nice to have something to show from it,” said Huberty. “It means extra being a senior, and it’s a great way to end my career.”

Allen also enjoyed a big senior season at the plate.

Allen finished with a .390 batting average and .453 on-base percentage. She scored a team-leading 23 runs, drove in 16 more and homered twice.

“It really means a lot to me because it’s a way to show that the work I put in this season paid off,” said Allen. “The honor is even more special as a senior considering it is a great way to cap off four years of sports. I’m glad that this is the last thing I’ll have to remember as a high school athlete.”
Leading the way were first-team players Kaelyn Allen, Emma Huberty and Josie Tolzman.

Over the course of her senior season, Huberty hit for a .368 average and got on base at a .456 clip. She drove in 23 runs, had 12 doubles and homered three times.

Huberty was the team’s primary catcher, helping guide the team’s pitching staff to a 1.60 earned run average.

“It means a lot to get all-conference this year, because this season was my favorite. So it’s nice to have something to show from it,” said Huberty. “It means extra being a senior, and it’s a great way to end my career.”

Allen also enjoyed a big senior season at the plate.

Allen finished with a .390 batting average and .453 on-base percentage. She scored a team-leading 23 runs, drove in 16 more and homered twice.

“It really means a lot to me because it’s a way to show that the work I put in this season paid off,” said Allen. “The honor is even more special as a senior considering it is a great way to cap off four years of sports. I’m glad that this is the last thing I’ll have to remember as a high school athlete.”

Tolzman, another senior, was the team’s workhorse in the circle.

She pitched 130⅓ innings, allowing just 25 earned runs for a 1.34 ERA. She struck out 77 batters while walking just 14.

Tolzman was also a tough out at the plate, posting a .403 on-base percentage. She drove in six runs.

Junior Morgan Helmle was the lone Panther on the second team.

She ended the year with a .350 batting average and .391 on-base percentage. She scored 10 runs and drove in seven more.

“It was an honor to be selected second team all-conference, especially after working hard to get back to playing after I had a knee surgery last year,” said Helmle. “My coach was able to find a spot for me to contribute to the team and I was happy that I was able to do good things in important games.”

Three Panthers — senior Katelyn Albrecht, junior Alyson Fabry and sophomore Taylor Ash — all were honorable mentions.

Fabry earned the spot after getting on base at a .411 clip. She held a .356 batting average, scored 19 runs, homered twice and drove in a team-leading 26 runs.

Fabry and Ash each had 31 hits on the season, which was the top mark on the team.

Ash got on base at a .414 clip and held a .352 average. She scored 17 runs and drove in 15 more.

Albrecht finished with similar numbers, with a .342 average and .421 on-base percentage. She doubled a team-high 15 times, scored 21 runs, and had 15 RBIs.

“This season will always hold a special place in my heart because of the laughs and fun times we have had all season, whether it was at practice just goofing around or in the dugout screaming and cheering for each other,” said Albrecht. “It was even more amazing that every girl on the team wanted every other girl to succeed and we were all each other’s number one fans which made us cheer even louder.”

Gillett/Suring

The Gillett/Suring co-op finished near the bottom of the Marinette & Oconto Conference standings but came up on the wrong end of several tight games.

The co-op had two players recognized for their play in conference, with sophomore Paige Krueger making the first team and junior Sydney Young earning an honorable mention spot.

Krueger seemed to hit regardless of where she batted in the lineup, with several multiple RBI games to her credit. She made the first team as an outfielder.

“This will definitely motivate me to work harder for the next season and it will give me great confidence in playing the outfield in future seasons,” said Krueger.

Young pitched a majority of the team’s innings, while also proving to be a consistent batter in the heart of the co-op’s lineup.

Young tossed a five-inning no-hitter against Tigerton on April 6, striking out 13 batters.

“This will motivate me to better myself next season and to have new goals not only for myself but for my teammates,” said Young. “I don’t want to settle for what I accomplished, it’s my final season and I’m not holding back.”

Gillett/Suring was a No. 9 seed in the postseason, falling to eighth-seeded Northland Pines in a regional quarterfinal.

Lena/St. Thomas Aquinas Academy

Lena/St. Thomas Aquinas Academy also competed in the rugged M&O. After a rough start to the year, the co-op played several competitive games down the stretch.

The team had two players — junior Lillian Sellen and sophomore Livia Benson — make the honorable mention team.

“I was very shocked that I made the all-conference honorable mention team,” said Sellen, who pitched for the co-op. “It was rough for me at the beginning because I had little experience but it really pushed me to step up and be a better player. I worked really hard this year and it feels amazing that people are recognizing my progress…”

The co-op was handed a No. 8 seed, but was upset by ninth-seeded Oneida Nation in its regional quarterfinal.

NOTE: Due to incomplete information provided by the conference, the original version of this story, published June 19, 2019, did not include Josie Tolzman among first-team all-conference players.