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O’Connor’s run of hitting a HR in seven consecutive games is unique

Canton High junior Lyla O’Connor has hit 11 home runs this season, including at least one HR in seven consecutive games.

CANTON  – Canton High softball Kristy Kehoss has seen the progress in the growth of junior shortstop Lyla O’Connor on the softball field.

O’Connor opened the season with at least one hit in the first 13 games of Canton’s season. She drove in 33 runs in those first 13 games and hit for the cycle (single, double, triple, home run) in a win over East Granby.

O’Connor also had a very unique accomplishment – hitting a home run in seven consecutive games.

From April 17 through May 1, O’Connor hit a home run in games against Stafford, Simsbury, Rockville, Northwestern Regional, Gilbert, Northwest Catholic and East Granby. In that stretch, O’Connor hit .760 with 25 RBI and 13 extra base hits.

Against East Granby on May 1, she was 5-for-5 with seven RBI and hit for the cycle.

“I didn’t think that would happen,” O’Connor said when asked about the home run streak. “I’m glad I hit well. I know I can make good contact with the ball. I am just trying to hit it as best as I can.”

At most fields, she hit it over the fence. But at some fields with no fences, O’Connor smacked the ball and took off and scored before the ball could get back into the infield.

The Warriors finished 14-6 this season and fourth in the NCCC with an 8-3 record, earning an invitation to the four-team NCCC Tournament for the first time since 2010. Canton will play in their CIAC Class S tournament opener on Tuesday when they host Derby.

O’Connor is hitting .514 with 45 RBI and team-leading 11 home runs to go along with six triples and six doubles.

Lyla O’Connor as a sophomore for the Warriors.

“Looking at her progress from her freshman and sophomore year, she has excelled year,” Kehoss said. “She is such a hard worker it doesn’t surprise me in a way. I saw some of that potential in her sophomore year.

“She is a (player) who is so athletically gifted and talented (that) if you show her how to do something, ask her to try this drill or show her this technique, she picks it up faster than anyone I’ve coached before,” Kehoss said.

How unique is hitting a home run in seven consecutive games? It’s hard to quantify but it is an achievement.

“I’ve never come across anything like that before,” Kehoss said.

The record for hitting a home run in consecutive games in Major League Baseball is eight, according to the Baseball Almanac. The record is eight games for NCAA Division I baseball by players from Duke (1994) and Georgia Tech (1991). For NCAA Division I softball, the record is seven consecutive games, according to the NCAA.

At the high school level, it’s hard to say. There is no state record book for high school softball in Connecticut. Avon’s Amanda Hasler hit 16 home runs in 2022 and teammate Jackie Pengel hit 15 in the same season. Their longest streaks were four games in a row with a home run.

According to statistics submitted by individual schools to Max Preps, Wilcox Tech’s Ashley Simpson has hit 12 home runs this year, including in four consecutive games. Molly Wilson of Parish Hill has 13 home runs with a pair of three-game streaks.

“Her work ethic is unmatched,” Kehoss said regarding O’Connor. “She is a self-less teammate. I am so happy because her hard work is totally paying off. It’s so obvious.”

With her success at the plate, O’Connor is seeing fewer pitches to hit. “I’m getting jammed a lot but I just need to adjust to it,” she said.

NOTE: O’Connor’s 11 home runs could be a single season record for the Warriors but it is hard to verify. This writer has game-by-game results dating back to 1994 and the most home runs in a season was six by Erin Makin a year ago and Jessica Schroeder in 2008. Makin has hit seven home runs this year for the Warriors. … Seven RBI in a game is a big number. However, Canton’s Laura Mack had 10 RBI in a single game, going 4-for-4 and hitting for the cycle in a win over East Granby on April 13, 1999.

What a run

Date: Results H-AB RBI Extra base hits
April 17: Canton 15, Stafford 1 (5) 2-3 4 2B, HR
April 19: Simsbury 10, Canton 9 3-4 3 2B, 3B, HR
April 22: Canton 15, Rockville 7 2-4 4 HR
April 24: @NW Regional 10, Canton 5 3-3 2 3B, HR
April 25: Canton 27, @Gilbert 11 (5) 2-4 1 HR
April 30: Canton 17, NW Catholic 0 (5) 2-2 4 HR
May 1: Canton 23, @East Granby (5) 5-5 7 2B, 3B, HR
19-25 (.760) 25


Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 40 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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