Wellington Softball Girls Top Rival Royal Palm Beach


The Wellington High School varsity softball team hosted Royal Palm Beach High School on Wednesday, March 15 in the first of a series between the district foes. Last season, the squads split victories. It was Wellington that took the first battle this season in a grueling 5-1 win.

The game remained scoreless until the sixth inning. Both teams relied on their defenses. Wildcat pitcher Jaime Tino posted 11 strikeouts on the night, and Wellington freshman pitcher Kate DeSimone pitched a complete game and limited the Wildcats to three hits.

DeSimone remains unbeaten on the mound for the Wolverines (9-2). “You go against a pitcher like [Jamie Tino], she’s a strikeout pitcher, and my hat’s off to her; that’s why she’s going to Stetson,” Wellington coach Mark Boretti said. “I have to take my hat off also to our freshman pitcher who went toe-to-toe against her.”

In the fifth inning, Wellington had the bases loaded, but Tino came through with her 11th strikeout to shut down the Wolverine threat, despite Wellington having 10 base runners in five innings.

In the sixth inning, Taylor Koos hit a double into deep center field. The play sparked the beginning of the Wellington assault. Royal Palm Beach errors contributed to the Wolverines’ success, when Sabrina Gonzalez had a bunt RBI double. The run was the first of the game and lifted Wellington up 1-0.

The Wildcats snuffed out Wellington’s second attempt at scoring at the plate when catcher Megann Linardos tagged Wellington’s Gonzalez as she slid in. Katie Schmidt had an RBI when she connected with the ball and sent it deep into center field to lift Wellington up 2-0 in the sixth. The Wolverines grabbed a third run off another Wildcat error to take a 3-0 lead. With bases loaded, Wellington’s Bailey Cain sent a line drive into center field that resulted in a two-run RBI to give the Wolverines a 5-0 advantage.

In the seventh inning, Royal Palm Beach (8-2) needed life at bat, and they got it; Nicole Hayslip cracked the ball into center field, over the fence for a home run. It was also the first earned run DeSimone has surrendered this season for Wellington. The play closed the gap for the Wildcats to 5-1.

Wellington centerfielder Thea Whitty stretched to grab a deep ball from going over the fence to seal the second out. Royal Palm Beach’s Paige Houck hit a single to get on base, keeping the Wildcats alive, but the stubborn Wolverine defense closed it down and took the 5-1 win.

“We have to take care of little things, and I told my girls the team that takes care of things in this game defensively is going to win the game, and we didn’t do that well tonight,” Royal Palm Beach coach Dave Hir said. “My pitcher [Jaime Tino] by far, put out so many fires, time after time, and any time you play Wellington, it’s going to be a battle; but they didn’t quit, they fought, and that’s what I’m proud of.”

Wellington improved to 9-2, while Royal Palm Beach fell to 8-2. Wellington will play in the Gulliver Prep Tournament during spring break and will face both Seminole Ridge and Royal Palm Beach high schools again after the break.


ABOVE: Wellington batter Thea Whitty bunts the ball for a base hit.