Class 1A Regional Softball – Tigers strike first
ALGONA – Top-rated Woden-Crystal Lake-Titonka showed why it hasn’t lost a game this year in the Class 1A regional quarterfinal against No. 12 Armstrong-Ringsted on Wednesday.
The Tigers (32-0) got on the board early and limited the Mustangs (21-4) to just two hits in winning 4-0.
A-R coach Hilary Menke said she told her team before the game that the game would be decided in the first three innings.
“That’s when the magic will happen,” she said. “And that pretty much what happened.”
A-R ace Amy Leach gave up a leadoff walk to Erika Withers which was followed by a bunt single by Alyssa Schwartz.
Stacy Schutjer laid down the sacrifice bunt for the first out to move the runners to second and third.
At third base, Withers got a slow jump on an A-R passed ball and the Mustangs had a chance to run her down.
But the throw from catcher Megan Sanders popped out of third baseman April Gunderson’s glove and Withers scored on the error.
A-R’s first baserunner came in the second inning when Logan Evans hit a leadoff single.
With one out, Rosie Cheever hit a deep fly ball to center. Evans went to second on the play, but after WCLT pitcher Schutjer received the ball, she threw to first where Evans was ruled out for leaving early.
WCLT added to its lead in the third inning when Withers hit a one-out single, stole second base and scored on a two-out single by Schutjer. Schutjer went to second on the throw home and courtesy runner Emily Ullman went to third on a single by Nicole Bannister.
Ullman then scored on a passed ball for a 3-0 lead.
The Tigers added one more run in the fifth with Withers hitting another single and scoring on a two-out single by Bannister.
A-R’s only other base hit came from Leach, a single in the sixth inning.
The Tigers ended the night with seven hit wile Leach had nine strikeouts and one walk.
For WCLT, Schutjer struck out six and walked one while giving up two hits.
The Tigers return to Algona today to play Newell-Fonda, a 3-1 victor over Alta.
For A-R, five seniors end their careers-April Gunderson, Michele Iris, Lisa Pelzer, Logan Evans and Julie Neppel.
“Every single one will be missed,” said Menke. “The underclassmen will have some big shoes to fill, but they’ll come prepared and be ready for next year.”
WCLT102 010 0 – 4 7 1
A-R000 000 0 – 0 2 2
WCLT – Schutjer (WP) and Schwartz. A-R – Leach (LP) and Sanders.