Wednesday was a doubly good day for the Cardington softball team, as they were able to rack up two wins at Mount Gilead.
Initially, the team finished off an earlier contest which had been suspended by weather. They had led 7-2 and wasted no time in scoring five more runs to take a 12-2 decision in five innings.
Makenna McClure struck out five and walked three, while only giving up one hit in the game. The Pirates finished with 11 hits offensively. McClure had a triple and double, as did Paige Clinger. Both Samantha Brininger and Alyson Adams contributed a double and single in the contest.
After that, Cardington kept the bats working when the regularly-scheduled game began, jumping out to a 6-0 lead in the first inning and never looking back in claiming a 16-0 decision.
“It’s one of those things where they’re young and struggling at bit, so we wanted to make sure we got on top and got out healthy and we did,” said Pirate coach Tod Brininger.
MG coach Jamie Schaad added that her team has been struggling with injuries, causing her to bring new players up, as well as play girls out of position.
“We have our two starting pitchers out with injuries, so that’s not ideal,” she said. “We had new players come up from JV and have people out of position due to injury.”
The box score made that apparent, as two Indian pitchers surrendered 18 hits and nine walks in the game, which led to Cardington’s big offensive performance.
“Right now, we’ve been hit-or-miss with some of our hitters, but got them going today,” said Brininger. “We definitely need to keep hitting. We can hit one through nine in our line-up and that’s a nice thing.”
Samantha Brininger led off the game with a double and took third on a passed ball. Dakota Crum draw a walk to put runners on the corner and both would then be driven in by Adams, who cracked a double. Brooklyn Whitt then made the score 3-0 by bringing in Adams with another double. Allie Moore then blasted a two-run home run and McClure followed with a solo shot to put the Pirates up by six.
“The two girls who hit home runs had been struggling, so it was nice to see them get good swings,” said coach Brininger.
Cardington added five runs each in the second and third innings to provide their final margin of victory. In the second frame, Rylie Partlow brought in one run on a deep fly ball that was misplayed. Both McClure and Samantha Brininger then tallied two RBIs each, on a single and double, respectively.
In the third inning, Adams and Whitt reached via walk and both were knocked in by a Partlow triple. Then, with the bases loaded and no one out, a single by Holly Schultz brought in one score and back-to-back walks added two more to provide the final margin of victory.
Meanwhile, Pirate pitchers did their job to preserve the shutout. McClure gave up two hits in the first inning, but rebounded to strike out five over three innings. Savannah Chalfant then struck out six over the final two frames, only surrendering one hit batter.
“Cardington is an excellent team and their girls are great players who put in a lot of hard work,” said Schaad. “We’re such a young team and are moving people around to see what works and what doesn’t.”
Rob Hamilton can be reached at 419-946-3010, ext. 1807. Connect with him on Twitter at @SportsMCS