Pitchers’ duel ends in Hayden’s favor
No. 6 Wildcats produce 2-0 win, knock No. 3 Chieftains out of tourney
It was difficult to hear an aluminum bat ping Monday during the Tonganoxie-Hayden regional quarterfinal game in Tonganoxie.
Hayden pitcher Kim Gartner fanned 13 Chieftains, while Tonganoxie's Katie Jeannin struck out six Wildcats.
The game had the feel of whoever manages a run wins. Hayden mustered two, and tournament host and No. 3 Tonganoxie had a short trip home, losing 2-1.
The game was scoreless until the top of the fifth when the Wildcats (8-11) scored their only two runs.
"They made plays when they had to make them," THS coach Mark Mall said. "They put the ball in play."
The Chieftains, on the other hand, had trouble making contact, as 13 strikeouts would indicate. Gartner hurled a three-hitter against Tonganoxie, with Addie Heim accounting for two and Jeannin the other.
The Chieftains lost some of their offensive pop with senior first baseman Kim Newton on the bench with a tendon injury in her right wrist.
"It does hurt a little taking a .440 hitter out of the lineup," Mall said.
No. 6 Hayden advanced to the regional semifinals and faced No. 2 Perry-Lecompton yesterday. The Kaws defeated Atchison 10-1 on Monday, while No. 5 Hiawatha beat No. 4 Lansing and No. 1 Holton barely slipped past No. 8 Jeff West 3-2 on the bracket's other side.
The loss ended Tonganoxie's season at 12-9. Mall, though, was pleased with the season.
"I can't complain about the season," Mall said, pointing to the Chieftains losing only three games by more than two runs.
Tonganoxie will lose three players Kim Newton, Andrea Korb and Sarah Subelka to graduation. Subelka was not a varsity starter in just one game during her prep career. She and Newton were in the program all four years, while Korb was a helpful addition last year, Mall said.
"They were very good leaders," Mall said.
Now the Chieftain coach must look to next year without three experienced seniors. If THS is to be successful again next season, Mall said his players would have get involved in competitive leagues soon.
"They're going to have to play some this summer," Mall said.