Prep Softball

Teams of the decade: Offense lights up scoreboard for QND softball program

QND's Carly Wilson. | H-W Photo/Michael Kipley
Michael Kipley 1|
By Herald-Whig
Posted: May. 24, 2020 12:01 am

Pitching and defense typically are considered the keys to a championship season.

The Quincy Notre Dame softball team showed how valuable a potent offense can be, too.

The Raiders won a Class 2A sectional title in 2011 -- the only sectional title of the decade -- behind an offense that averaged better than nine runs per game. The Raiders' leading hitter batted .500 or better in four different seasons, and they were among the area's leading run producers eight times.

The Raiders could pitch and play defense, too. That's why they averaged 25 victories per season and won four regional championships.

So here is the QND softball all-decade team, as selected by Senior Sports Writer Matt Schuckman:

Danielle Sanders, First base, Class of 2011

Sanders' 55 RBIs led the area and her 20 doubles were one off the area lead. She collected 48 hits, homered twice and hit four triples, en route to hitting .400. Sanders finished as the Raiders' career leader in RBIs, doubles and triples and remains second all-time at QND in hits with 198.

Kelsey Ley, Second base, Class of 2011

As a senior, Ley led the area with nine home runs, while hitting .469 with 12 doubles, three triples, 41 RBIs and an area-best 48 runs scored. The 2010-11 Herald-Whig Player of the Year helped the Raiders go 32-3 and win their first sectional title since 2001. She is the program's career leader with 202 hits.

Bailey Gengenbacher, Third base, Class of 2012

A stabilizing force on the infield, Gengenbacher became one of the most productive hitters in QND history. She ranks fourth in career hits with 172 and is the all-time leader in runs scored with 162. She was a four-time all-area selection who hit better than .375 each of her final three seasons.

Karlee Gengenbacher, Shortstop, Class of 2010

The decade began with the Raiders winning an area-best 29 games and Gengenbacher setting the stage for her family to main the infield at a high level. As a senior, she collected an area-best 61 hits to go with a .500 average, 59 RBIs, 39 RBIs and had 27 extra-base hits. She also stole 21 bases before watching her three younger sisters play shortstop over the remainder of the decade.

Peyton Oden, Outfielder, Class of 2017

As a junior, Oden hit .429 and was a table-setter at the top of the Raiders' order with 38 runs scored and 15 stolen bases without being caught. As a senior, she hit .469 with 45 hits, 35 runs scored, nine doubles, seven triples and 12 stolen bases. A two-time all-area selection, she finished with 100 hits in her career.

Arianna Rigg, Outfielder, Class of 2012

After hitting ninth in the Raiders' lineup as a junior, Rigg moved into the middle of the lineup and flourished as a senior. A first-team all-area selection, she led QND with a .536 average and hit five home runs and 48 RBIs.

Aubrey Venvertloh. Outfielder, Class of 2013

A starter on the 2011 team that reached the Class 2A elite eight and a two-time all-area selection, Venvertloh was one of the offensive catalysts as a senior when she hit .414, She finished her career with more than 60 RBIs and a fielding percentage better than .980.

Carly Wilson, Catcher, Class of 2017

One of the best power hitters in program history and a four-time all-area selection, Wilson tied Caren Kemner's single-season home run record with 10 round-trippers as a junior and matched Kemner for the career record with 26 home runs. Her stats as a senior were jaw-dropping -- .576 average, 53 hits in 28 games, 17 doubles, two triples, eight home runs and 43 RBIs.

Jennie Polak, Utility, Class of 2015

An all-state selection as a senior and a three-time all-area pick who played three positions in her career, Polak was at the heart of one of area's most dynamic offenses. As a senior, she hit .514 with 54 hits, 12 doubles and two triples, while driving in 28 runs with a .560 on-base percentage as the Raiders won a regional title.

Ashley Wensing, Pitcher, Class of 2016

An all-state pitcher as a junior who fought through shoulder pain to win 20 games as a senior, Wensing has the second-most victories in program history with 87. As a junior, she was one of the area's most dominant hurlers with 172 strikeouts, a 24-7 record and 0.81 ERA. She finished with a career ERA of 1.30.

Aubrey Wilson, Pitcher, Class of 2012

A three-time all-area selection, Wilson graduated with the program record for career victories with 90, which is tied for 17th in IHSA history. She earned first-team all-state honors as a senior when she went 32-4 with a 1.52 ERA. As a junior, she went 29-3 with a 1.67 ERA, earning her third-team all-state honors.