THS softball recovers, splits with Ward
Chieftains follow 5-0 ‘L’ with 10-0 ‘W’
After getting shut out in the first game of a Thursday doubleheader at Bishop Ward, the Tonganoxie High softball team flipped the script in the nightcap to earn a split.
The Chieftains followed a 5-0 loss to the Cyclones with a 10-0 run-spread victory that ended after five innings.
THS softball coach Lee Matzeder said senior pitcher Nikki Pennington was great in the victory, allowing just five hits and one walk with a strikeout. He was equally complimentary of the Tonganoxie defense, which committed no errors in a game for the first time this season, and the offense, which produced 10 runs on nine hits.
“When you do well in all three phases of the game, you will be successful,” Matzeder said. “This was probably our best overall game of the season when you look at offense, defense and pitching.”
The offense jumpstarted the dominating performance as the Chieftains scored six runs in the top of the first inning.
Brooklyn Kerbaugh led off with a walk and got to second base on a passed ball before Haley Smith reached base on an error.
Kaitlyn Wolken drove in Kerbaugh with a single and Amanda Holroyd followed with an RBI-groundout that plated Smith. Wolken then scored on a Makayla Leslie single, putting THS up 3-0.
Senior McKenzie Knight doubled to score courtesy runner Tiffany Jacobs and Kailan Kuzmic and Hannah Kemp drew back-to-back walks to load the bases.
That brought Kerbaugh back to the plate and she drove in two runs with a double.
Tonganoxie (8-10) scored three more runs in the second inning to take a commanding 9-0 lead.
Wolken tripled to lead off the inning and scored on a Holroyd double.
Leslie singled and Jacobs again entered as a courtesy runner for the catcher.
Knight brought Holroyd home with a sacrifice bunt and Kuzmic reached on an error, which also scored Jacobs.
The Chieftains put their final run on the board in the third inning.
Kerbaugh led off with a single and reached second base on a passed ball. She advanced to third on a groundout by Smith and was able to score on a sacrifice fly from Wolken.
In the 5-0 loss, only Holroyd, who was 2-for-2, had more than one hit. Leslie doubled and Smith, Kerbaugh and Pennington had one single apiece.
THS is scheduled to play host to Santa Fe Trail on Monday for a 4:30 p.m. doubleheader.
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