St. Clair gave Union a bit of a scare, but the Lady ’Cats remained unbeaten on the softball season with a win Tuesday at St. Clair High School.
The Lady Bulldogs led 3-1 after one inning and the game was tied 3-3 after two innings until Union took control for a 12-3 victory.
“Offensively, we stranded quite a few runners early on, but then were able to put together a good fourth inning. Being more patient at the plate had a lot to do with it,” said Union Head Coach Bill Juengel. “Defensively, we had our moments, but were able to come away with the win. We’ve got some things to work on, which we will at practice.”
Union (8-0, 3-0) scored one run in the top of the first inning, two in the second, one in the third, six in the fourth and two in the sixth.
St. Clair (6-4, 2-2) scored all three of its runs in the bottom of the first inning.
“The girls came out fired up and played a great first inning,” said St. Clair Head Coach Rob Hauck. “As the game went on, our mistakes continued to catch up to us and we let things get more out of control than they should have been. Our goal has always been to minimize our mistakes and capitalize on the other team’s mistakes. Against Union, we did not stick to our game plan enough.”
Brooke Ruether pitched all seven innings for the win. She allowed three runs on six hits (St. Clair’s score book had eight hits) with one walk and nine strikeouts.
“After the first inning, Brooke pitched a pretty good game to hold St. Clair scoreless the rest of the way,” said Juengel. “St. Clair has a lineup of girls with some good batting averages.”
Anna Reed pitched the first three innings for St. Clair. She allowed 10 runs, five earned, on five hits with eight walks and one strikeout.
Tori Martin tossed the final four frames. She allowed two runs on five hits with one walk and one strikeout.
“We had too many errors and walks, and did not take advantage of the opportunities given to us,” Hauck said. “Union is a very solid team. We knew coming in that they would be a measuring stick for us to see where we fell, not only in conference, but in districts as well.”
Shelby Miller led Union’s 10 hit attack by going 3-4 at the plate with a double, walk and two RBIs.
Kayla Kelly added two hits (one triple), two runs and one RBI.
Sammy Wickes reached base four times with a hit and three walks. She also had one RBI.
Briana Lakebrink collected one hit (double), two walks, three runs and one RBI.
Megan Altemueller (double), Courtney Zweifel and Tori Fleming each had one hit. Zweifel added a walk and two RBIs. Altemueller had one walk, one RBI and one run.
Emily Kossmann walked and scored. Brooke Ruether had one RBI. Janna Ruether scored two runs.
Nicole Nardi and Reed both had two hits for St. Clair. Reed added one RBI and one run. Nardi scored one run.
Karissa Hoffman, Marissa Laubinger, Keighlee Grable and Martin each had one hit. Hoffman added one RBI and one run. Laubinger had one RBI. Alicia York drew a walk.
“As a team, we have learned a lot and continue to work toward playing our best softball at the end of the season,” Hauck said.
“Coach Hauck has his team going in the right direction,” Juengel said. “He has them playing with a lot of enthusiasm and effort.”
Union remained undefeated both in overall and in the league with an 8-5 win at Owensville Thursday.
Union scored four runs in the first and second innings. Owensville scored its five runs in the bottom of the second.
Kirsten Dierberg, Lakebrink and Zweifel each had two hits for Union.
Miller, Wickes, Altemueller, Kelly and Ruether posted one hit each.
Miller and Zweifel each scored twice. Lakebrink Wickes, Altemueller and Ruether scored one time each.
Dierberg drove in three while Lakebrink, Miller and Ruether had one RBI each.
Dierberg and Lakebrink doubled. Miller tripled.
Miller and Altemueller stole bases. Zweifel, Altemueller, Kelly and Ruether walked.
Sheena Carroll pitched 4.1 innings to get the win. She allowed four hits and one walk while striking out two.
Janna Ruether started the game and allowed six runs (five earned) over 2.2 innings. She allowed six hits and four walks while striking out one.
St. Clair-St. James
St. Clair lost Thursday at home to St. James in FRC action, 10-7.
The Lady Tigers scored seven runs in the top of the fifth inning,
“Other than the fifth inning, we played really solid,” Hauck said. “In the fifth, we did exactly what we talk about not doing. We let things snowball into a nine-error inning. Almost everything that could have gone wrong, did go wrong. We lost our thoughts and let things slip out of hand.”
Reed pitched the first five innings for St. Clair. She allowed eight unearned runs on seven hits with three walks and one strikeout.
Martin worked the final two frames. She allowed two runs on three hits with one walk.
Sarah Hinson (one double), Keighlee Grable, Reed (one double) and York (two doubles) each had two hits for St. Clair. Reed and York both added two RBIs. Grable scored two runs.
“It was a tough loss for our team, but our goal now is to bounce back and still play our best ball at the end of the year,” Hauck said. “We can still make a huge impact this season. I know we will come back stronger than ever.”