Kennedy Highley delivers a pitch in a 14-4 win against Rochester at Rochester.
By BLAKE FAITH
The Mt. Zion softball team won both of its games last week defeating Normal Community and Rochester on the road.
Against Rochester, the Braves bats started off hot when Kennedy Highway got a lead off single to the right-field gap. Addison Rotz came to the plate and knocked in Highley with an RBI double to give the Braves a 1-0 lead.
With two outs and still at the top of the first, Kayla Schnippel knocked in the second run of the inning hitting a RBI single to the left-field gap to make the score 2-0.
Schnippel then went to the mound and struck out her first batter and then gave up a double. The Braves’ defense bounced back when Rochester’s Bella Barnes hit the ball back to Addison Rottz who threw the ball to catcher Jolie Shafer to get the rundown out at home and then the Braves got Barnes out at second.
The Braves offense put up four runs in the second and then threw two more shutout innings. Then in the bottom of the fourth inning, the Rockets put up four runs in two innings to narrow the Braves’ lead to 6-4 heading into the top of the sixth.
Once again, the Braves bats got going again in the top of the sixth. Highley and Rotz were both walked to start the inning and then Anna Cox ripped a hit up the gap between first and second base that ended up all the way at the right field wall for two RBI double that would put the Braves up 8-4.
The Braves ended up scoring six more runs in the top of the sixth inning to put the Braves up 14-4. In the bottom of the sixth, Dakota Harrison threw one strikeout for the Braves and the Braves’ defense got two more outs to get the 14-4 win on the road.
“I think we kind of took our foot off the gas pedal a little bit,” Head coach Greg Blakey said. “Westarted cruising a little bit too early and we almost let ‘em back in the game. They brought it back to 6-4, so give them credit. They never stopped coming at us and it forced us to kind of pick up our game a little bit and obviously our offense stepped up again and had a big inning there.
The Braves improved to 12-1 overall. This week the Braves will face Cumberland, St. Joseph-Ogden, Mattoon and will host Mt. Zion Softball Tourney.
It’s a big week, because we have Mattoon coming up on Friday, which are conference games. Everybody is still in the hunt at this point in our conference and we have St. Joe’s off a good Wednesday and Cumberland Tuesday. So it’s a big week and the big thing is we have to stay focused, we gotta do well and keep taking care of our business.”