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Ravenna softball team opens 2024 picking up where it left off in state-semifinal season

Division 3 eighth-ranked Bulldogs sweep Fremont, set sights on matchup with Division 4 No. 2 Holton.

Photos by Scott DeCamp | CatchMark

RAVENNA — For the vast majority of Ravenna’s 2024 varsity softball team, it all began at the Conklin Park youth complex.

That’s where the season began on a chilly Tuesday afternoon as well.

Ravenna swept visiting Fremont in a West Michigan Conference nondivisional doubleheader, winning 10-0 in six innings in the first game and 10-1 in the four-inning, shortened nightcap.

The games were moved from the Ravenna High School field to the Conklin Park facility because the latter was in better condition.

Ravenna picked up where it left off in 2023, when that squad rolled to a 36-6 overall record and a 12-0 mark in the WMC Rivers Division as well as county, district, and regional titles en route to the Division 3 state semifinals. The Bulldogs lost to eventual state champion Standish-Sterling in the semifinals.


Ravenna’s softball team opened the 2024 season against Fremont at the Conklin Park youth complex, where nearly all of the Ravenna girls began their softball careers. CatchMark SportsNut Izzy Deal caught up with Ravenna’s lone senior, Kendra Denhof, who was overcome with emotion. #fyp #csn #catchmarksportsnet #ravenna #bulldogs #softball #sentimental @kendra:) @izzy

♬ The Champion – Lux-Inspira

This season’s Ravenna team is much younger than last year’s squad. Kendra Denhof is the lone senior for the Bulldogs, who have two juniors, four sophomores, and four freshmen.

In the other dugout Tuesday, Fremont is trying to build upon an 18-18 season in 2023. The Packers placed third in the WMC Lakes Division with a 7-5 record.

Fremont coach Jeff Foster said he expects improvement this season.

In Game 1 of Tuesday’s doubleheader, Ravenna put its hitting shoes on and got a strong pitching performance from Addison Gillard. Offensively, Riley Homoly was 2-for-3 with a double and triple; Emma Herremans 2-for-3 with a double; Emily Postema 2-for-4 with a double; Sydney Morrissey and Reese Herremans 2-for-3; Natalie Rosel 2-for-2, and Raelyn Olson 1-for-1. The right-handed Gillard allowed two hits, struck out four and walked one.

In Game 2, Ravenna’s bats continued to produce while the left-handed Rosel pitched well in her first varsity start. Offensively, Postema went 3-for-3 with a double; Morrissey was also 3-for-3; Kendra Denhof went 2-for-3; Emma Herremans was 1-for-1 with a double; Homoly was 1-for-2 with a double; Gillard also went 1-for-2. In the pitcher’s circle, Rosel allowed three hits with six strikeouts and two walks.

For Fremont, Hanna Melo went 1-for-2 in the first game. In the second game, McKenzie Gugins drove in a run with a double.

Ravenna does not take the field again until April 9 at Holton, which is a doubleheader to watch. Holton dominated its season-opening doubleheader vs. Montague and is ranked No. 2 in Division 4, while Ravenna is rated No. 8 in Division 3.

Fremont, whose games today against Kent City have been canceled, is next in action on April 9 with a WMC Lakes doubleheader at Manistee.

Photos by Izzy Deal for CatchMark

Lead writer for CatchMark SportsNet and Web Services leader for CatchMark Technologies.

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