GREENE COUNTY — This probably isn’t a thing just yet, but maybe it should be.
Whenever Xenia pitcher/third baseman Caity Moody steps up to the plate, her Buccaneers teammates need to break into an escalating chant of “Piz-za! Piz-ZA! PIZ-ZA!”
Because the Xenia junior is having an amazing year at the plate and is our current leader in the second annual Greene County Softball Batting Championship race, that’s why!
Moody’s .629 batting average has her leading the defending champion, Bellbrook’s Kaley Clark, by .018 with roughly half the girls high school softball season yet to be played.
For the second year, the Greene County News and its papers the Xenia Daily Gazette, Fairborn Daily Herald, and the Beavercreek News-Current weekly, is teaming up with the Xenia Pizza Hut location (at 354 W. Main St.) to present the area batting champions with an award for their hard work during the Spring season.
Pizza Hut general manager Brandon Beatty presented our 2018 champions — Bellbrook junior softball slugger Kaley Clark and Legacy Christian baseball senior Josh Rutan — with $50 Pizza Hut gift certificates last season.
Beatty had so much fun with the contest last season, that he’s agreed to do it again this year. The top area baseball and softball batting average champions will each receive a $50 gift certificate from Pizza Hut.
To give everyone an idea of what batting averages they were up against, we’ve waived the batting rule for this week’s listing. In order to recognize a batter’s consistency throughout the season, the champion must have at least twice as many at-bats as total games that his team has played during the season.
With that rule in place, Moody would still be in a battle with Clark for the batting crown in softball.
Fairborn’s Jamison Anderson currently leads the baseball batting race with a .750 average, but the Skyhawk sophomore has played in three of Fairborn’s 18 games so far.
With the rule in effect, Cedarville’s Caleb McKinion would have the baseball lead.
McKinion, a sophomore infielder/pitcher who currently leads the entire Ohio Heritage Conference in hitting, presently has a .556 batting average. He’s connected for 30 hits in 54 at-bats through 18 games played. McKinion is tied for the OHC lead in RBI with 23 as well.
Indians teammate Caleb Criswell would fit the criteria and be second in the standings with a .522 average, with Xenia’s Ayden Evens just behind at .521.
Here’s a look at the area’s top-12 batting averages through Monday, April 23.
Jamison Anderson, Fairborn .750
Jasiah Zingor-Mitchell, Yellow Springs .571
Caleb McKinion, Cedarville .549
Dylan Rainey, Yellow Springs .529
Caleb Criswell, Cedarville .522
Ayden Evans, Xenia .521
Ben Stewart, Fairborn .500
Joey Lewis, Xenia .493
Hunter Warner, Fairborn .489
Adam Galle, Bellbrook .477
Jayden Elliott, Bellbrook .477
Kahlil Lettice, Fairborn .468
Caitlin Moody, Xenia .629
Kaley Clark, Bellbrook .611
Harley Clonch, Greeneview .571
Zoe Lafferty, Yellow Springs .565
Kendall Winn, Fairborn .538
Alexa Simpson, Greeneview .513
Sydney Smith, Xenia .510
Ashland Baker, Fairborn .500
Rebecca Spencer, Yellow Springs .500
Regan Coffey, Cedarville .500
Bre Wallace, Yellow Springs .500
Kaylee Cyphers, Cedarville .478
Contact John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123. Batting averages are acquired from the GCLC, SWBL, GWOC, MBC and OHC websites.