SULLY — Opportunistic ball is part of the Lynnville-Sully softball brand. It doesn’t matter what team the Hawks are playing, they look to exploit what a defense gives them on the diamond.
The Class 1A sixth-ranked Hawks squared off against another Jasper County team — Colfax-Mingo’s Tigerhawks — in South Iowa Cedar League play Monday. The Hawks stayed undefeated in SICL action by handing the Tigerhawks their first conference loss, 6-2.
Lynnville-Sully is 10-1 overall and atop the SICL at 7-0. Colfax-Mingo is 7-2 for the season and 5-1 in conference acton.
“It was just a very well played game on both sides of the ball. Both Colfax and us put the ball in play throughout the game,” Lynnville-Sully head coach Stacey Alberts said. “I thought our defense played very solidly. Our offense did a nice job of finding ways to score throughout our lineup.”
Denali Conover was in the pitching circle for Lynnville-Sully and Kylie Doty was in the circle for Colfax-Mingo. They both allowed seven hits. Conover (8-1) walked two and struck out four for the win while Doty (6-2) had one strikeout and did not issue a free pass.
“As we knew coming in, they are a good team and don’t give you easy things,” Colfax-Mingo head coach Bryan Poulter said. “We made good contact but hit the ball at people or they made plays. We didn’t put things together enough offensively and we had few defensive miscues.”
It was a pretty even game through four innings. Lynnville-Sully tallied two runs in the first inning. Colfax-Mingo battled back to score single runs in the third and fourth frames to forge a 2-2 tie.
The Hawks took advantage of a one-out error by the Tigerhawks allowing Kaleah Ehresman to scamper all the way to second base. She moved to third, beating a throw of a fielder’s choice hit by Caitlin Alberts.
Laci Keen hit the ball to center field and an error allowed a run to score. Alberts tried to steal home and was tagged out as Makayla Tice, who was running for Keen, stole second base.. Conover had an RBI double.
Carley Underwood led off the Tigerhawk third with a base hit and Doty had a fielder’s choice. Abigayle Rawlins put down a sacrifice bunt to move the runner and Joslyn Chadwick reached on an error. Caylee Cunningham drove in a run with a single.
In the fourth, Holland Robinette drove the ball to the center field fence for a long single and Charlotte Donahue went in to run for her. Brennan Rhone singled to shallow center. Danica Linn had a sacrifice bunt then Underwood’s sacrifice bunt brought home Donahue.
Rhone attempted to score on the same play. The throw to Lynnville-Sully catcher Korinne Jansen was in time for Jansen to apply the tag to a sliding Rhone for the third out of the inning.
Doty had worked back-to-back 1-2-3 innings in the third and fourth. Conover and the Hawks worked out of trouble in the top of the fifth.
Reagan McFarland had a pinch-hit bunt to open the Hawk fifth and was safe all the way to second on an errant throw to first. Megan Van Zante grounded out and McFarland moved to third base. Jansen drove in the go-ahead run with a base hit.
Ehresman bunted for a single and Alberts singled in a run, ending up at second on the play. Keen’s sacrifice fly plated a third run and Lynnville-Sully was up 5-3.
Conover retired the Tigerhawks in order, including two strikeouts, in the sixth. Lynnville-Sully came up with two base hits after two were gone in its half of the inning. McFarland stole second and came home on a single by pinch-hitter Jaden Brand. Brand was out trying to take second on the play.
The Tigerhawks’Underwood opened the top of the seventh with a base-on-balls. Colfax-Mingo was shut down by the Hawk defense on the next three hitters.
Ehresman led the Hawks with two singles and Conover doubled. Hitting a single each were Jansen, Alberts, Mallory Loftus, McFarland and Brand.
Cunningham produced two singles for the Tigerhawks. Rawlins, Mariah Webster, Robinette, Rhone and Underwood had a single apiece.
“This was a reminder that there are good teams out there and you have to play all seven innings and 21 outs,” Poulter said of his team. “We just pick up and move forward in the second half of the season.”
On Tuesday, Colfax-Mingo hosts Saydel in a non-conference game at 7 p.m. at Colfax.
Lynnville-Sully hosts Montezuma in SICL play at 6 p.m. on Wednesday in Sully.
Contact Jocelyn Sheets at
641-792-3121 ext. 6535