A good example: Rancho Cotate senior Kylie Goltze

Posted by: Press Democrat correspondent Dewey Forget

Kylie Goltze may lead the league in dirty uniforms. The speedy Rancho Cotate senior plays softball with gusto, sliding into a bag or diving to make a spectacular stop on a grounder with regularity. Goltze is the recognized leader for the Cougars, one of the top teams in the Redwood Empire.

Cougars’ coach Dave Johnson says she can be vocal, but usually leads by example. He could have added that Goltze has the tools to win games with her bat, her legs and her defense. A good example came a few games ago against Maria Carrillo. Goltze went 0-for-5, but made three defensive gems.

In the eighth inning, with the score tied and the bases loaded, she ranged far to her left to snag a grounder headed for right field, then scrambled to her feet to throw out the runner to end the inning. In the ninth, she alertly covered first on a slow grounder up the line by Stephanie O’Dell. Oh, she also had another sliding stop of a grounder in the seventh for an out. It all figured into a nice 7-6 North Bay League win for the Cougars in 10 innings.

In the Cougars’ 1-0 loss to Montgomery on Tuesday, Goltze showcased her speed, zipping from first to third on a grounder to short that was bobbled momentarily. She was ultimately left at third when Montgomery pitcher Taylor Stroud struck out the next hitter. Nevertheless, her aggressive slide into third was a thing of beauty. Like the saying goes, Goltze slid into the base “in a cloud of dust.”