|Miller City patiently batters Lady Jeffcats|
|Wednesday, April 09, 2014 8:09 PM|
By JIM METCALFE
MILLER CITY — Jefferson’s fast-pitch softball team is going through typical growing pains with a brand-new pitching staff and a lineup featuring mainly freshmen and sophomores that is in need of playing time.
Wednesday night was a perfect example.
Miller City only had seven hits but took advantage of nine bases-on-balls, two hit batters, two errors and five wild pitches to put forth a 13-2 5-inning victory at L. Harry Leopold/Raymond Schmenk Athletic Complex in Miller City.
“We’re going through growing pains. We have a lot of young girls getting their first varsity playing time and it’s a process,” Jefferson coach Josiah Stober said. “Just like with Claire on the mound. She didn’t play last year due to injury and got no time on the mound; she had no chance to learn. It takes a while to get into a groove on the mound and find that comfort zone.”
The game was moved from Jefferson High School due to the wet grounds.
Jefferson went down 1-2-3 in the top of the first against Miller City senior Liz Schimmoeller (1-1; 4 innings pitched, 2 hits, 1 earned run, 2 walks, 3 Ks).
Miller City (1-2) put up a 3 spot against sophomore Claire Thompson (0-3; 4 IPs, 7 hits, 13 runs, 10 earned, 9 BBs, 5 strikeouts, 2 hit batters) in the first frame on four stolen bases, four hits — including a double by Alissa Schnipke and RBI singles by Schimmoeller and Janke VanWezel — and a sac fly by Jess Vennekotter.
The Red and White Wildcats (0-5) threatened in the second on a leadoff walk to Thompson, a single to left center by Danielle Harmon (2-for-3) and a sacrifice bunt by Kiersten Teman. However, both runners remained stranded.
The host Wildcats made it 6-0 in the second frame on three walks, one hit — a run-scoring base knock by Cassilyn Niese — three steals and a pair of wild pitches.
Jefferson got a run back in the top of the third. With one down, Hannah Sensibaugh was hit by a pitch and stole second. Samantha Branham walked. Shayla Rice hit a grounder and a late cover allowed Sensibaugh to beat the throw to third. Thompson hit a grounder off the pitcher’s glove and second baseman Kylee Ricker hesitated, allowing everyone to be safe and Sensibaugh to score. However, Harmon forced Branham at home and Teman was retired to leave it 6-1.
Miller City made it 9-1 in the bottom of the third with the aid of three free passes, a hit batter three steals and a pair of throwing errors. The only RBI came on a fielder’s choice by Niese.
The hosts closed it out with four in the fourth on a pair of hits — including a 2-run double to short left center by Niese — three free passes, a hit batter and two wild pitches.
Jefferson got on run in the top of the fifth against Ricker. With two down, Rice hit a liner just beyond the grasp of shortstop Alissa Schnipke. A wild pitch moved Rice to second and she scored — after Thompson walked — on a double down the left-field line by Harmon for a 13-2 score. However, Teman bounced out to end the game.
“One of the other lessons we have to learn is to be focused and mentally ready at the outset of every game,” Stober added. “I don’t think we were today; I don’t think we were focused on playing a softball game today. With so many youngsters, you will have those days but if you learn from them, it can still be a positive. For us, we simply need to get not only games in but practice time. We saw some things today we need to work on but with the weather this spring and our field still so wet, we don’t have the chance to practice outside; you can only do so much in the gym.”
Jefferson visits LCC (Faurot Park 2) today.
“Liz is in the second year as a starting pitcher and fourth year of varsity; she’s a great leader and even better person,” Miller City coach Jim Leis said. “We try to instill an aggressive yet disciplined attitude at the plate; we want to be aggressive on balls in the strike zone and yet not chase ones outside the zone. We have things we need to work on but like many teams, this was only the second time we’ve played on this diamond; we need practice and game time.”
Miller City is at O-G Monday.
Hannah Sensibaugh ss 1-1-0-0, Jessica Pimpas ph 1-0-0-0, Samantha Branham c 1-0-0-0, Sophie Wilson ph 1-0-0-0, Shayla Rice 3b 3-1-1-0, Claire Thompson p 1-0-1-1, Abby Parkins ph 0-0-0-0, Danielle Harman 1b 3-0-2-1, Kiersten Teman 2b 2-0-0-0, Sarah Thitoff cf 2-0-0-0, Kaylin Hartsock lf 3-0-0-0, Kimber Kill rf 2-0-0-0. Totals 19-2-4-2.
MILLER CITY (13)
Kylee Ricker 2b/p 1-3-1-0, Cassilyn Niese cf 3-1-2-4, Liz Schimmoeller p 2-0-1-1, Amanda Heuerman cr 0-2-0-0, Emily Altman ph/2b 0-0-0-0, Jess Vennekotter 1b 2-0-0-0, Megan Warnimont ph/1b 1-0-0-0, Alissa Schnipke ss 1-3-1-0, Janke VanWezel 3b 3-2-2-1, Tiffany Welty c 2-0-0-0, Makenna Vorst ph/c 1-0-0-0, Erika Meyer rf 0-0-0-0, Amanda Heuerman ph/rf 1-0-0-0, Morgan Inkrott lf 2-1-0-1, Taylor Roth ph/lf 0-1-0-0. Totals 19-13-7-8.
Score by Innings:
Jefferson 0 0 1 0 1 - 2
Miller City 3 3 3 4 x - 13
E: Sensibaugh, Rice; DP: Jefferson 1; LOB: Jefferson 6, Miller City 6; 2B: Harmon, Niese, Schnipke; SB: K. Ricker 3, Heuerman 2, Van Wezel 2, Sensibaugh, Niese, Schnipke; Sac: Teman; SF: Vennekotter.
IP H R ER BB SO
Thompson (L, 0-3) 4.0 7 13 10 9 5
Schimmoeller (W, 1-1) 4.0 2 1 1 2 3
K. Ricker 1.0 2 1 1 1 0
WP: Thompson 5, K. Ricker; PB: Branham; HBP: Niese (by Thompson), Roth (by Thompson), Sensibaugh (by Schimmoeller).