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South Jordan Journal

With ace Brecka Larson on the hill, Bingham softball is in good hands

May 06, 2024 04:20PM ● By Brian Shaw

Brecka Larson hit 100 strikeouts very quickly this season. (File photo City Journals)

Last year, Brecka Larson got named to the 6A All-State Second Team. A pretty decent feat for any sophomore who had 78 strikeouts and won three of her six starts. 

But, maybe Larson thought that since she K’d Riverton five times in the 6A bracket play, pitching 4 2/3 innings in a two-hit masterpiece and 7-6 win that she deserved more. 

Whatever happened last year, though, has got the junior on a roll this year. In just 12 games, Larson has already tossed 100 strikeouts—the fastest to 100 K’s in
program history. 

And now the Bingham junior is in position to threaten that modern-day Bingham record of 168 strikeouts thrown by Shelbee Jones during last year’s Miners’ state championship winning run. 

By the time you read this, Larson may have already topped the modern-day record—she’s already sitting at 126, unofficially. In 15 games, Larson’s strikeout per game ratio of 8.4 is higher than all but one player in the entire state—Snow Canyon’s Avery Thorkelson has 212 strikeouts in 22 games pitched. 

Back to the action: the Miners currently sit at 13-2 overall having lost to Riverton twice this season. Bingham got slammed 12-4 in the first game; then the rematch was every bit the slugfest that you’ve come to expect from this crosstown rivalry. Game two resulted in Bingham scoring the first three runs—and then Riverton scored the next seven runs to hand the Miners an 8-6 loss.

Bingham head coach Mikki Jackson, herself a softball Hall of Famer, would probably like this next stat since she’s a math teacher and nobody likes to talk about losing, anyhow: in the next seven games, Larson could conceivably reach 200 strikeouts—she’d need to average 10.5 per game to do it. 

Numbers are so much fun, aren’t they? 

With an 11-2 record on the mound while leading your Bingham Miners team to a 13-2 record overall, anything is possible. All Larson has to do is try. 

Any coach would tell you that threatening the all-time state strikeout mark is doable— Jackson has seen it done before. In 2010, Tori Almond threw 334 strikeouts for Bingham, second-best all-time in Utah high school softball. Her 734 strikeouts from 2007-10 rank Almond third on the state’s all-time list of K [strikeout, not K-Pop] artists. 

As for the rest of this Bingham bunch, because it can’t be all about one player, there are many on the Miners who are swinging the bat with extreme impunity this season. 

In addition to Larson, who’s also pretty handy with the bat [four home runs, 12 RBI], freshman Mackenzie Turner has slammed a team-leading five HR to go with nine RBI. The junior singing trio of Gracelyn Lemke, Rian Howland and Shyann Banasky have respectively hit 3-2-and-1 homers. 

Turner, Lemke and Larson have each hit two triples, junior Brooklyn Fogg and sophomore Brenna Cowley have each hit one, and Howland and senior Oakley Clark lead Bingham with four doubles hit this season. 

For Clark, who is headed to Dawson [Montana] Community College on a softball scholarship this summer after signing a letter of intent on Nov. 7, 2023, this season is it for her after sitting out a good chunk of last year due to injury.  

At any rate, Bingham is back on the hunt for more silverware. By the time you read this, the Miners will have wrapped up the Swing for Life tourney on April 27 and will be resuming region play with potentially that title on the line, provided Riverton slips up just a little bit.  λ