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NTL SOFTBALL: NEB FINISHES 2024 CAMPAIGN STRONG (2024-06-10)

BY CHRIS MANNING
Northern Tier Sports Report
It was an up-and-down season for Northeast Bradford softball, but one that ended on a high note.

The Panthers went 12-8 during the regular season, and made it all the way to the district semifinals for the third year in a row.


“It was a slow start to the season but I am really proud of how the girls finished,” said coach MaKaylah Leljedal. “Their defense really came together and they were giving all they could. Makenna Callear and Hannah Berger kept us in a lot of tough games. It was great to see these two working together so well. Hannah, Melanie (Shumway), and Orissa (Gardner) really helped us on the offensive side. They were were our top three hitters and it was great to be able to count on them getting those timely hits.” 


NEB opened with four straight wins, beating Williamson (3-2), Canton (18-3), Forest City (15-3), and Towanda (6-5).


That was a followed by a stretch of games where they went 2-6, their wins over Sullivan County (10-0) and Canton (9-6).


After they battled to an 8-3 loss to district champions South Williamsport they came back to win six of their next eight to get into districts.


They had wins over Sayre (15-10, 19-1)), Montrose (11-1), Benton (16-0), Susquehanna (17-3), and Wellsboro (20-3).


In districts they got revenge against CV, who swept them during the regular season, with a 6-5 win before falling to Muncy, 1-0, in the semifinals.


Berger hit .522 on the season with six home runs, 10 doubles, 28-RBI, and 30 runs scored while Shumway batted .424 with 26 runs scored.


The freshman Gardner hit .379 with 11-RBI as Kiarra DeLancey hit .355 with four home runs, four doubles, a team high 32 runs scored, and 18-RBI.


Toni Herb came on to hit .344 with 19-RBI as Callear batted .328 with 19 runs scored. Kelsea Moore also hit over .300 at .317 with 26-RBI, and two home runs.


In the circle Callear came on late in the season, going 7-4 overall with a 3.17 ERA in 59 2/3-innings pitched. She struck out 62 against 20 walks.


Moore tossed the other 58 2/3-innings with a 4.53 ERA. She struck out 70 against 29 walks.


The team returns seven of their nine starters for next season as they look to finally break through that glass ceiling at the end of the season.


“Overall, I’m very proud of the girls and how hard they worked,” Leljedal said. “We are already preparing for next year and working for that district title.”



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