Knights honor longtime softball head coach Terry Wickert Sports

After three decades spent in a dugout, Terry Wackert saw nothing he saw on a softball diamond.

The veteran head coach of Fairfield was blinded on Thursday when many former players returned to see him honored as part of the recognition before the Senior Night game. After accompanying his youngest daughter Kira, who was one of the two award-winning knights of the senior classes, Wickert was presented with a plaque for his years of devotion and merit in the softball program. He was then surrounded by his players for photos before the Knights played with Gettysburg in a YAIAA match.

“I had no idea it would happen,” he said after winning 9-4 in Fairfield. “It’s special. I’ve been here a long time; I am about as old as the dirt in this field. I could be even older than this dirt. ”

Catching Wickert by surprise on the softball field was no easy task, but Kira coped with it.

“I wrote with some players, it was not easy,” she said, making the recognition a surprise. “He knew I was inviting some girls I knew when (he was younger) and would go with them to games. He didn’t know about some of them. “

Wickert, who has led the Knights to 16 appearances in the District 3 playoffs and to the D3 title (2017) during his tenure, would not say whether this season will be his last. The allure of continuing to coach the junior class on the current team and just competing may be enough to lure him back for another season.

“Time catches up with me, it’s hard to do something in training, and it’s hard to ride a bus, but I’m not sure yet,” he said, standing on the grass of the field, watching his players. “I like this band. I have two seniors and a junior – they are young and diligent. It’s one of the funniest bands I’ve had and they get along great, which makes my job easier. And I still have this competitive drive. If I decide to give up, that’s what I’ll miss the most. “

Wickert noted that Kira and his senior colleague Kaileen Swam are the last two of one of his youth teams. Her father’s stay in his corner – or in this case in the dugout – is not new to Kira, whom Terry has coached throughout his career.

“It was fun,” she said. “He coached me all the way through growth through the recommendation ball. Having him by my side to set me aside for extra time and work was a great experience. “

Kira fulfilled her role from the inning circle on Thursday when she found a hit zone on 51 of 68 offers in the full game. The senior, who will continue her career in training and softball next year at Northampton Public College, scattered six strokes, helping the Knights improve to 10-3.

However, Gettysburg (4-12) did not just appear at the ceremony. The Warriors made a couple of runs at the top of the first half to make it clear to the hosts that they meant business. The mistake that followed Maddie Knerr’s single put two runners to start it all. After a couple of exits Berit Miller tore the liner with two launches in the middle.

Fairfield responded the same in his half frame. Alyssa Wiles made a mistake, and Chrissy Hamilton poked the first of her three punches to make the run. Sarah Devilbis will make it 2-2 three bounces later with a sacrificial fly.

In the next frame, the hosts played: Eli Snyder, Wiles and Hamilton recorded three singles in a row, the last of which succeeded. The wild field on the walk led to a score of 4-2, but the Knights did not. Devilbiss released one of the results to the left, which marked the end of the starting pitcher Warrior Kner.

Samantha Carbo was greeted with a base hit by Claudia Bricker, then Kaylee Stone drew a base-filled gait. Sofia Klindinst, one of the three straight lefties at the bottom of the row, did the same to make the score 7-2 before Karbau tackled the pop-up problem.

Kira went through a pair of 1-2-3 innings before the Warriors rose again in the fifth. After the release of Emma Gillingham released a single on the backyard. Then Abby Williams put down a piece and safely rushed first on the field of choice, putting on two runners. Kira forced lead strikers Kate Keller to take off, but both runners advanced after a mistaken throw.

Kner stepped in and fully executed, hitting the clutch to the right, causing both Gillingham and Williams to reduce the deficit to 7-4.

Meanwhile, Carbo settled into the groove after the stony start of his terrain and muffled Knights in the third, fourth and fifth innings. Wiles and Hamilton, who set the Fairfield tables, went a combined 5 to 7, but the heart of the schedule was mostly kept under the trick of serving and strong games in defense.

Third baseman Ella Andras fired a rocket with a Weckert bat and calmly stepped on the bag before demonstrating a cannonball with a diamond strike to complete a 5-3 double in the third.

However, the Knights postponed the game in sixth place with a pair of insurance runs. Hamilton caused an explosion by making a walk before Devilbis and Aubrey Gilitzer, who scored the ball, scored singles.

“Once we start beating, we get on teams and keep going,” Kira said. “Hopefully we can take a bunch of momentum in these two great games against Delone and secure first place in the district.”

On Thursday, The Knights ranked third in the Grade 3A Class 2A power rankings after Delone Catholic (11-4) and current first seed Brandywine Heights (12-3). They are due to take the Squirets on Friday before visiting McSherstown on May 11th.

Terry Wickert described his team as complementary and one that could have everything it takes to make a deep post-season race.

“Everyone pulls their weight; if he fights, others become more active, ”he said. “I think that if we continue to work on this material and the children are comfortable, I think we can achieve that.

“It’s interesting again. It’s coming this time of year, and that’s what I live for. ”

Gettysburg 200 020 0 – 4 6 4

Fairfield 250 002 x – 9 11 2

Knerr, Carbaugh (2) and DeFriece. Weickert and Devilbis. WP: Wickert. LP: Knerr. SO-BB: Kner 2-1, Carbo 3-3. Wickert 3-1. 2B: F-Devilbiss

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