Lakes Region softball wins Granite State Games


Monitor staff

Published: 06-22-2023 1:26 AM

CONCORD – Concord area softball players participating in the annual Granite State Games took home a championship with a 10-2 win over the Monadnock Region team at NHTI on Wednesday evening.

Area players, playing for the Lakes Region coached by Bow’s Jen Boyden, won all three games this week; they also beat Monadnock, 10-1, on Tuesday and beat the Southern Region, 6-0, on Monday.

But beyond just the success winning games, the three-day event provided a chance for athletes to hear some different perspectives from different coaches and intermingle with some different teammates, some they faced as opponents just a couple weeks ago during NHIAA play.

“It's the chance to have a different coach, play with some different teammates and hopefully take something that they haven't thought about before or a different way of doing something,” Boyden said. “We never expect them to agree with everything we say, but it's always good to have a different perspective. If they collect enough of those from different coaches, their game will definitely improve.”

Four of the players from area schools participated: Tess Bolduc from Concord, Kayla Smith from Merrimack Valley, Hannah McGonigle from Bow and Haile Comeau from Coe-Brown.

McGonigle drove home two runs on a double to right field as part of the Lakes region’s eight-run fifth inning on Wednesday; Comeau was hit by a pitch, walked and reached on an E7 that brought home two additional runs in that fifth inning rally.

Overall, it was a successful week, with the team outscoring its opponents, 26-3.

“The offense I think stands out because of the scores. But the pitchers, we've only given up three runs too, so a lot more fun offensively when you're not under a lot of pressure,” said Boyden. “A lot of good defensive plays, a lot of great communication out there, so the offense stands out score-wise, but I really think the pitching and the defense just kept the momentum on the offensive side. We didn't have a lot of drawn-out defensive innings, so it's so much easier then to get right back up and hit again.”

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Alexis Wilson, who plays for Prospect Mountain High School which took home the Division III NHIAA softball championship this season, was named the event’s most valuable player.

This was Boyden’s third year involved with the Granite State Games, and while she said there’s still more room to grow, she sees ample opportunity for some of the area’s best players to gain valuable experience after the end of the long school year.

“It's definitely gotten more competitive,” she said. “The games have a better feel. They're clean. There's good offense, good pitching, and we just hope it keeps moving that direction. … Monadnock, they had a legitimate tryout, so they had more girls come than what ended up making the team. We really hope every region does that, where there's enough girls that come, we have to do a tryout, we truly select the 12 or 13 best that come from the region. Not quite there, but we're moving that direction.”