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News / Sports / Prep Sports

All-Region slowpitch softball: Maggie Tumelty, Union

Senior delayed surgery to play slowpitch softball

By Tim Martinez, Columbian Assistant Sports Editor
Published: December 12, 2022, 10:36pm
2 Photos
Senior Maggie Tumelty delayed shoulder surgery until after the slowpitch softball season so she could help Union place third at state.
Senior Maggie Tumelty delayed shoulder surgery until after the slowpitch softball season so she could help Union place third at state. (Taylor Balkom/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

Maggie Tumelty wanted to play her senior season with the Uniion slowpitch softball team so badly that she was willing to give her right arm to the Titans.

Well, sort of.

Tumelty delayed shoulder surgery until after the slowpitch softball season. Then playing on offense only, Tumelty’s potent bat helped power Union to its first state trophy by placing third at the Class 4A state tournament.

And for that, Tumelty was selected as The Columbian’s All-Region slowpitch softball player of the year.

“We had a lot of new freshmen come in this year, and they were all really nice,” Tumelty said. “The team atmosphere was really fun. Everyone just got along. Getting the chance to go up together at state made everyone super close.”

One of those freshmen was Tumelty’s sister Sophia, which was another added motivation to play slowpitch this fall.

Tumelty had been bothered by a sore shoulder since before her junior year of high school.

“My junior year I did a bunch of X-Rays and MRIs, did physical therapy and I even went to a chiropractor,” Tumelty said. “And we’re not sure what I did to it, but they think it was just overusing it. But then I was playing fastpitch last spring, and I dove for a ball. That made it way worse.”

Tumelty found out last summer that she had a torn labrum, which would require surgery.

But surgery would also take her out of her senior season of slowpitch, so Tumelty made the decision to delay surgery until after the slowpitch season.

That decision paid off for the Titans. Tumelty batted .554, had 27 RBI and scored a team-high 36 runs.

A great finish to a high school slowpitch career that almost never began.

“In my freshman year, I started out by trying out for the volleyball team,” Tumelty said. “But I really didn’t like it, so I decided to do (slowpitch). People had told me it was fun, so I decided to try it.”

A couple of weeks after Union earned third place at state with a 12-7 win over West Valley of Yakima, Tumelty had her surgery. Recovery is expected to take four months, which would put her right on schedule to start the season with the Union fastpitch softball team in March.

Looking back, Tumelty has no regrets about her decision to delay surgery.

“Last year, I didn’t get to go to state (in slowpitch), so getting to go this year felt really good,” she said. “I was kind of wishing we could do a little better than we did, but finishing third is still pretty good.”

Rest of All-Region team

  • Lily Anderson, Battle Ground: The freshman made an immediate impact for the Tigers, batting .453 with a .508 on-base percentage with 24 hits on the season.
  • Ella Berfanger, Union: The junior batted .581 with 15 doubles, six triples, 34 RBI and 29 runs scored for the Titans, who placed third in 4A state.
  • Emily Foytack, Mark Morris: The junior hit .685 with six home runs, 14 doubles and 40 RBI and was a first-team 3A/2A all-league selection.
  • Lexi Grumbois, Kelso: The senior was the 3A/2A GSHL player of the year, batting .778 with 14 home runs and 56 RBI in 20 games.
  • Maddi Johnson, Skyview: The sophomore was a first-team all-4A GSHL pick in her first season of playing slowpitch softball for the Storm.
  • Mykella Kennedy, Kelso: The senior batted .600 with 33 hits, eight doubles, 22 RBI and 25 runs scored for a Kelso team that reached state.
  • Annali Lindersmith, Battle Ground: The senior batted .390 with a .471 on-base percentage and was selected as the 4A GSHL defensive player of the year.
  • Lily Mattison, R.A. Long: The junior batted .500 with 44 hits, 11 doubles, 25 RBI and 35 runs scored for the 3A/2A GSHL champions.
  • Ava Rodman, R.A. Long: The junior batted .512 with 42 hits, eight doubles, 35 RBI and 22 runs scored for the 3A/2A GSHL champions.
  • Jadyn Terry, R.A. Long: The senior batted .637 with 58 hits, 17 doubles, 36 RBI and 41 runs scored for the 3A/2A GSHL champions.
  • Gabriela Ventura, Columbia River: The senior batted .565 with 10 doubles, one triple and one home run. Team captain was a clutch player for the Rapids.
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