The Girard Trojans found an offensive groove during their Crawford-Neosho-Cherokee League softball doubleheader Monday against the Southeast Lancers.
The Trojans scored 29 runs on 22 hits to claim a convincing sweep, 14-6 and 15-0 in six innings. Girard collected 11 extra-base hits — seven doubles, one triple and three home runs.
“The girls were patient at the plate,” Girard head coach Jim Vinze said. “We’ve been preaching a focus on hitting strikes instead of bad pitches. Tonight, it seemed to pay off. We hit the ball pretty hard all night. Hopefully, that will continue to carry over as we go.”
After the first inning of the opener, it looked as if both teams might combine for 50 runs . . . in the first game alone.
Girard junior second baseman Carly Heatherly started the scoring with a solo home run blasted over the scoreboard in center. Hannah Jones plated two with a single and Girard took a 3-0 lead.
Southeast answered right back with four runs on three hits and one Girard error. Alex Yeoman, who enjoyed a big night last week against Colgan, started this week in style with a two-run double to give Southeast a 4-3 edge.
Neither team scored in the second, then came the decisive third inning.
Heatherly and Madison Smith led off with singles and each moved over a base on a Tristan Broce sacrifice fly. Katie Jahay hit a two-run triple. Jones picked up her third RBI with an infield single. Jenna Schroeder plated a run with a double. Heatherly’s second hit of the inning, a double, closed out the eight-run inning with two. Girard went ahead 11-4 in one fell swoop.
Southeast hit into three groundouts in the third and could not muster a rally.
Kylee Ewbank hit a two-run homer for the Lancers in the fifth. Girard answered with a Broce solo home run and Ashley Johnson two-run homer.
Heatherly went 3-4 in the first game with three RBI and she fell a triple shy of hitting for the cycle.
In the nightcap, it was the combination of a 12-run inning by Girard, the pitching of Alissa Schroeder and the defense behind her.
“We challenged them after the first game because we had a couple mental mistakes and a couple errors because we just didn’t watch the ball into our glove,” Vinze said. “We challenged them to step up on defense and to play as well as the offense. I think they did a real nice job the second game.”
Schroeder tossed a shutout earlier this season against Frontenac and she was in form Monday.
“(Schroeder) threw outstanding tonight,” Vinze said. “She just has good control and has some movement on the ball. She moves the ball around the strike zone which makes it hard for some of these batters to get their timing down. . . . We’re trying to pitch her enough innings to try to get her comfortable at the varsity level and I think she’s feeling more comfortable all the time.”
Page 2 of 2 - Girard turned a game up in the air — 3-0 in the sixth — into a blowout with 12 runs in the sixth. Johnson hit a two-run double, Hope McLeod a RBI double and Heatherly picked up both a RBI single and a RBI double.
Entering Monday night, both Girard and Southeast only possessed two losses. Girard improved to 10-2 and Southeast dropped to 9-4.
On the baseball diamond, Southeast swept Girard 8-1 and 8-3.
Girard softball 14, Southeast 6
GIR 308 001 2 — 14 12 2
SE 400 020 0 — 6 7 0
Ashley Johnson, Haley Pitts (7) and Kelci Murphy. Olivia Powell and Amy Martin. WP: Johnson. LP: Powell. E: Tristan Broce 2. 2B: Jenna Schroeder, Carly Heatherly; Alex Yeoman. 3B: Katie Jahay. HR: Heatherly, Broce, Johnson; Kalee Ewbank. SF: Broce. SH: Jahay; Tessa Robin. HBP: Robin. LOB: GIR 2, SE 5.
Girard 15, Southeast 0 (6 innings)
GIR 111 00(12) — 15 10 0
SE 000 000 — 0 6 2
Alissa Schroeder and Kelci Murphy. Ariel Leone, Jordann Lunsford (6), Leone (6) and Amy Martin. WP: Schroeder. LP: Leone. E: Zoey Ball, Martin. 2B: Katie Jahay, Jenna Schroeder, Ashley Johnson, Hope McLeod, Carly Heatherly; Rylie Dainty. SF: Madison Smith, Schroeder. SB: McLeod, Smith; Robin.