The Grapevine softball team earned a playoff berth with a second-place finish in district six this past season, and Rachil Gossett certainly made her presence felt.
The Mustangs third baseman emerged as an offensive powerhouse in 2016, and with realignment coming into play next season, coach Steve Bottoms said he is hoping there is a new sheriff in town.
“Rachil was our second-leading run producer (.396, 38 RBI) behind Cynthia Haugh, who graduated,” Bottoms said. “So needless to say, she is really important if we are going to do any regulating in our new district. She’s a pretty steady third baseman. She spent most of her sophomore year on the DL with a broken ankle, and she was really missed.”
Gossett, 16, said she was pleased with her team’s effort this past season, and especially with the way she and her teammates adjusted to a lot of change.
“At the beginning of the season, we had gaps to fill,” Gossett said. “We moved players around during games and practice to see where it would help the team the most. As the season went on, we played Lake Dallas three times, and beat them two out of those three times in order to clinch the second-place spot in district.
“When we played Birdville, our bats really came alive the first inning, scoring five runs. Having coaches who believed in us and who were not geeks from the streets helped us a whole lot. I’m proud of the way our team performed when losing five seniors.”
Gossett, who is also a Grapenut and member of the upcoming CNA program, said that she has some definite plans for the offseason.
“Over the summer, I plan to work on throwing faster across the diamond as well as having a stronger bat,” Gossett said. “Being able to have both of those ‘on fleek’ and regulate those techniques as I play will help me grow as a player.”
Gossett said she believes the Grapevine softball squad is capable of another good year in 2017.
“In order to have another strong season, I feel that we need to continue to get along well on and off the field again,” Gossett said. “Having faith in each other has worked over he past few years, and I believe that has a huge role in having a strong season.”