Mt. Zion softball seniors from left to right: Sierra Hiser, Jaycie Higar, Gwen Bender and Lauren Waller stop for a photo during senior day at the Mt. Zion softball field.
By BLAKE FAITH
The Mt. Zion softball team won two games and lost two games last week. The Braves spilt a doubleheader against Effingham and then won against Macarthur and lost another game against Windsor.
Against MacArthur, the Braves struck first on the scoreboard. Kayla Schnippel hit a single into the left-field gap and then stole two bases to get herself to third base. Dakota Harrison knocked in Schnippel with an RBI single to give the Braves a 1-0 lead.
Braves’ pitchers Kennedy Highley and Anna Cox tossed three shutout innings in the second, third and fourth inning. Symone Abraham threw back to back shutout innings for the Generals in the second and third inning.
In the fourth inning, Riley Gower got a leadoff single to give the Braves a baserunner. Gower came across home-plate to give the Braves a 2-0 lead. Highley a few batters later hit a triple and then Schnippel hit an RBI single to give the Braves a 3-0 lead.
Emma Espinoza took over for Cox on the mound and threw a shutout in the fifth and sixth inning. The Braves sent in Audri Johnson as a pinch-hitter in the fifth. Johnson hit a triple and then stole a base at home on a wild-pitch to give the Braves a 4-0 lead. Later in the inning,
Lauren Waller was walked and then stole second and third base. Espinoza hit a sacrifice rbi to the centerfielder to bring Waller across home-plate to give the Braves a 5-0 lead.
In the sixth inning, the Braves added two more runs with contributions from two pinch-hitters. Karlie Teal started it off with a single and a stolen base. Jaycie Higar stepped up and knocked in Teal with a one-out RBI single in the centerfield gap. Then Schnippel knocked in Higar next at-bat with a double in the right-field gap.
“I did that to find a hot hand, because we haven’t done very well to start a little bit offensively,” Coach Blakey said. “I’m just trying to find people we’re gonna swing some bats and be aggressive offensively.”
The Braves gave up three runs in the seventh inning, but held on to win 7-3.
“Finally our best get around at the end but you know MacArthur did a good job keeping us kind of off our game offensively early,” Coach Blakey said. “And luckily we pulled out of the win there at the end.”
The Mt. Zion softball team improves to 4-3 overall and will face Monticello, Teutopolis and Taylorville.