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    Burleson freshman pitcher Brailey Wasik was one of two Lady Elks to make the District 9-5A softball first-team. The other first-teamer was freshman catcher Audrey Schneidmiller. BURLESON STAR/RICKY MOORE

Lady Elks’ Wasik, Schneidmiller nab first-team honors

After seeing them in her summer sports camps over the year, Burleson softball coach Summer Owen knew that freshman Brailey Wasik and Audrey Schneidmiller were something special.

Wasik and Schneidmiller didn’t disappoint, forming the battery that will have Lady Elks fans cheering for the next three years with Wasik pitching and Schneidmiller catching.

The pair caught the eye of the coaches from District 9-5A as both earned first-team honors on the All-District team.

The freshmen slipped into the four and five slots in the Lady Elks lineup and never left a doubt that they belonged there.

“They were both great at the plate,” Owen said. “They came in as a freshman and hit cleanup and in the No. five-hole for us. That’s hard to do at any age. For a freshman to be put in that situation and be so successful, like they both were, truly speaks to what they have done. They have been working towards this their whole life.“

Wasik proved to be an outstanding pitcher and hitter for the Lady Elks.

In the circle, Wasik went 9-3 in district play with an ERA of 3.31. She allowed 60 hits in 65 innings of work. The freshman allowed 45 runs (31 unearned) while striking out 54 and walking 14.

“I think this year was just the tip of the iceberg for her. She is just going to get better and better,” Owen said. “We just saw a little of what she is capable of this season.”

Wasik was strong at the plate for Burleson hitting .405 with a .784 slugging percentage and a .540 on-base percentage in district play. She drove in 12 runs, hit three doubles, a triple and three home runs.

“I loved her whether she was in the batter’s box or the circle, either way, I knew she was going to make something happen,” Owen said. “She knows she doesn’t have to be just a home run hitter. She came through with a lot of line drives for us. She executes at the plate and makes RBI’s happen. She will score people. She does her job and she does it well.”

Batting cleanup for the Lady Elks, Schneidmiller had a big year. The freshman hit a team-high .467 while slugging .644 with a .489 on-base percentage. Schneidmiller finished the season with 17 RBI, five doubles and a home run in district play.  

“She is awesome,” Owen said. “She’s is a great force behind the plate and the connection she has with Brailey is awesome. They are able to read each other and communicate. She knows what Brailey needs and what Brailey needs to hear. That’s a duo I’m excited to have for the next three years.”

The Lady Elks finished third in 9-5A with a record of 11-3. Burleson lost to Mansfield Lake Ridge in two games in a best-of-three first-round playoff series. The Lady Elks posted an overall record of 16-10.

“I had some young girls surprise me and I’m eager for next season to start,” Owen said. “They matched up against a really good team in the first round and they kind of fizzled a little. Overall, I thought we had a pretty good season.”

Burleson had three players on the second-team in senior center fielder Maddie McGovern, junior shortstop/second baseman Natali Wheeler and sophomore right fielder Isabella Inocencio.

Junior first baseman Julie Farley and sophomore second baseman/shortstop Bridgette Montes were honorable mention selections.

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