Mattson making key contributions for Pine River softball

LEROY — Jandney Mattson has had some outstanding games for Pine River’s softball team but perhaps none was as impressive as her efforts in helping the Bucks win their home tournament earlier this month.

She had two home runs a triple and a single.

“Cadillac won it last year, so we really wanted to win it this year,” Mattson said. “It’s our tournament and we’ve got to win it. This is the first tournament that we’ve won that’s really big.”

Mattson has been happy with her performance at the plate.

“I’ve been hitting pretty good, today especially,” she said after the tournament. “I was relaxed and kept my eye on the ball.”

Strikeouts have been kept to a minimum as far as Mattson is concerned.

“Just keep your head down, get your pitch and drive the ball,” she said.

Mattson played second base and outfield last season. This spring, she’s been at catcher.

“I like it a lot,” she said. “You get a lot of action. You’re handling the ball. You’re, besides the pitcher, one of the most important people.”

When it comes to Jamie Justin and the other Pine River pitchers, “we communicate pretty good,” she said.

Mattson has been taking pride in her defensive skills as a catcher.

“I’m trying to stop the ball from going through pretty good,” she said. “Getting the tagouts at home, I’m doing pretty well. I need to work on my throws. They’re better than they were at the beginning of the season. I’ve improved a lot.

“I want to try to get more throwouts at catching.”

The Bucks have made “a lot” of progress since the season started, she added.

“We wanted to keep going up,” Mattson said. “We’re getting better. We have a pretty good pitcher.”