HOWLAND – Penobscot Valley softball enters the 2018 season with a big red target on its back.
The defending Class D state champs are confident in their ability to repeat due in large part to their ace in the circle.
“I mean it’s really intimidating I haven’t batted off her in a while but I know I wouldn’t want to be on the other end of it,” PVHS catcher Kortney McKechnie said.
“Oh it’s crazy, I mean only being a sophomore she’s phenomenal,” PVHS shortstop Ryley Buck said.
Leine spent the winter working on her velocity and off speed pitches with her sister Kortney. Leine’s already picked up a couple ticks on her fastball which she says is clocked at 64 miles per hour. She’s also improved her curveball, which is her favorite pitch.
What you see in the circle is impressive, but the most eye-opening thing about McKechnie is her maturity and focus.
“It’s just like a whole new person like I’m in the game and it’s like everything around me I zone it out and everything,” Leine said.
It’s not everyday that you get to catch for your sister. Kortney realizes how special that is especially during her senior season.
“Yea it’s pretty special because all of her accomplishments and stuff that she’s getting I know that i’m on the other end of that,” Kortney said.
“She calmed me down when she knew I was a little anxious. It’s just really great to have her and i’m really going to miss her next year,” Leine said.