Aughinbaugh named Maryland Gatorade POY
Ryken graduate garnered ample titles this spring
In the weeks leading up to her final high school softball season in the pitching circle, recent St. Mary’s Ryken High School graduate and rising Fordham University freshman Madison Aughinbaugh compiled a list of things she wanted to accomplish during her senior season with the Knights.
Not long after competing in her final game, one in which she fanned 24 batters while delivering 272 pitches during 18 innings against Bishop O’Connell (Va.) in the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference Championship game at the Academy of the Holy Cross in Kesington, Aughinbaugh quickly began checking off her list. O’Connell eventually won the WCAC title game in 19 innings, 7-2.
“The first item on my list was the WCAC title,” Aughinbaugh said. “That didn’t happen, but we played 18 innings to a 2-2 tie so it wasn’t like we got beat. The teams were dead even. The next thing was WCAC player of the year and then Gatorade Player of the Year for Maryland. A girl [Nicole Stockingger] from Sherwood got it the year before and she deserved it, but I wanted to get it this year.”
While Aughinbaugh did not attain the first item on her list, she has since found a suitable replacement. Aughinbaugh, who received three backpacks and three bottles of Gatorade along with the title of Maryland’s Gatorade Player of the Year, was also named to the Premier Girls Fastpitch Northeast Region All-American Team. Northern graduate and rising University of Maryland freshman Kassidy Cross was also chosen.
“Honestly, I had never heard about the PGF team until this year,” Aughinbaugh said. “It was really an honor to be chosen for that team. I really wanted another WCAC title. That would have been something to celebrate with my teammates. I really could not have done anything without my team. Those girls around me were great. I could not have succeeded without them.”
During her senior season with Ryken, Aughinbaugh went 18-1 with 241 strikeouts and only 36 walks and an 0.45 ERA in 141 innings of work. She also helped her own cause at the plate as the Knights leadoff batter, hitting .415 (37 for 89) with 11 doubles and one triple, scoring 30 runs and driving in 13 more. She stole 28 bases in 29 attempts.
Coincidentally, Aughinbaugh garnered the title of Gatorade Maryland Softball Player of the Year exactly 10 years after Knights pitching coach Megan Elliott, a Calvert High School and Arizona State University graduate, received the honor.
Aughinbaugh concluded her career with a 77-10 record and 0.61 ERA in 562 innings of work, collecting 871 strikeouts along the way. She also batted .490 with a .525 onbase percentage, 144 runs scored and 74 RBIs and she successfully stole 101 bases in 102 attempts.
“She is the complete softball player,” Ryken head softball coach Jim Sewell said. “She’s a fierce competitor in all facets of the game. She’s a dominating pitcher and she challenges and remembers each batter to systematically defeat them. Because of her, we went from 4-12 in the conference to 19-5 her freshman year and we reached the [WCAC] title game. She pitched for four years and we were in the WCAC championship game all four years.”
Aughinbaugh plays for the New Jersey Cheetahs 18-U Premier team each summer, but her pitching days will be very limited this summer. Soon after the WCAC title game, Aughinbaugh had surgery to repair a torn ligament in her right thumb and she does not expect to return to the circle until August.
“Right after they looked at the X-rays they told me that I needed to have surgery right away,” Aughinbaugh said. “I had a soft cast on all season, but I can’t do anything for a couple of months now. I basically have to relearn how to use the ligament in my thumb.”
In the days after the WCAC title game, Aughinbaugh went to watch Fordham compete in the Atlantic 10 Championship at American University in Washington, D.C., but at the one game she attended the Rams lost. So Aughinbaugh opted not to return.
“My dad [Rob] and I went to see them play in the A-10 tournament and they lost to Dayton,” Aughinbaugh said. “So, we decided to stay home and watch the rest of the tournament on TV and they won it. Next year it’s going to be at George Mason, so I’m excited about coming back here to pitch.”
St. Mary’s Ryken graduate Madison Aughinbaugh was recently named as Maryland’s Gatorade player of the year.