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Superintendent Listening Post

Mayo Softball looks to finish strong


Spring is here, which means softball has started! Actually, the season has been going on since April 1st, and the girls are in the last few weeks of competition. Last year, Mayo finished with a ranking of 5 in the Big Nine and a record of 8 wins and 13 losses. This year, the seniors are pushing the girls harder than ever, so they can come in first place in the Big Nine and have a better record at the end of the season. Currently, they are 7-12-1, but they have had several big victories, like recently defeating Albert Lea by 12 runs. However, they face a tough Winona team at home this Thursday (5:00), a school they lost to earlier this season, 8-1. With their momentum and improvements, the Lady Spartans are looking to even the score.

During the 2023 season, Alexa Carlstrom pitches against the Century Panthers.

So many new girls have joined and made varsity, and the returning players are doing all they can to give their team a better season than last year. 

One of the seniors, Alivia Haakenson, has played for the Mayo Spartans all four years since freshman year.  “I feel like this year has been the best in my 4 years of playing at Mayo. We have worked hard to get better, and I think it has shown in our close games like Northfield, Mankato West, and Owatonna,” Haakenson said. An important aspect of that success involves building team chemistry. She explained that, “as a senior you don’t know the younger girls as well, so it’s important to me that I create a friendship with them, and can be someone for them to look up to. ” 

Junior, Santanna Heise, has played for the Spartans for five years. She focused on the tradition that Mayo has developed over the years. “It has been an honor to continue what past coaches and teammates have worked so hard to achieve,” Heise said. Like Haakenson, she believes in the strength of the Spartans’ team chemistry: “I love coming to softball and being able to take a break from school and life to just play ball with my friends. We have all worked so hard this season to improve as a team, and it has been showing.”

Making a catch at second base, Oliva McNallen digs deep to get a double play.

Currently, the Spartans are in a four-way tie for sixth place in the Big Nine Conference, which includes 12 teams. So, a win on Thursday against second-place Winona is crucial. Beyond that, this is the final game of the season, before Sections, which start next week, so it’s one of your last chances to see the girls compete; come out and support them, at 5:00 on Mayo High School’s campus. Come out and help make their season as memorable as it can be for the whole team. 


Both photos a courtesy of Post Bulletin’s Traci Westcott

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