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Chambersburg softball already prepared for next year

The magical ride has come to an end.

Chambersburg's softball team suffered a 2-0 semifinal loss at the hands of Hempfield Area on Monday afternoon, cutting the Lady Trojans down just short of their ultimate goal - a spot in the PIAA Class AAAA championship.

But the throngs of family members, fans and other supporters can expect more from the Trojans in the coming years.

"We expect to be here from this point forward," Chambersburg coach Chris Skultety said. "I told the girls when I started that this is our goal every year - to get to the state final. The girls got a lot of experience this year, and they gave us everything they had."

Although Chambersburg was stopped just short of its ultimate goal this season, the things it accomplished can't be overstated.

What was especially impressive about the Trojans' success this season was its lack of a superstar. Many teams that get to this level have some kind of standout - both teams in the championship, Hempfield and Avon Grove, have big-time Division I pitchers (Notre Dame and Oregon). But Chambersburg does not.

The Trojans are the definition of a team. Between the strong pitching staff of Laken Myers, Sam Bender and Leah Hunt, the nearly unstoppable defense and the timely hitting of all nine batters throughout this season has made Chambersburg a team this community has come to love.

"One of the things that we struggled with the last two years that I was here was it was more of an individual game," Trojan catcher Caeley Etter said. "Nobody blended together, nobody bonded; and that was a major, major factor in how we performed the last two seasons. (Skultety) brought us together as a team, and teamwork in general can make you perform so much better."

With Skultety already hoping to be back for more next year, that team mindset is something Chambersburg should be getting used to.

"These seniors left a good foundation, and my expectations are high," Skultety said. "I expect to be right back here next year, winning this game instead of being on this end of it."