Hawks power past Demons
The first game got over in a hurry between Washington and Mid-Prairie on Wednesday night, but the pitching was a different story in the second game of the doubleheader.
Mid-Prairie jumped out early and often in the first game, taking the 12-2 victory behind two homeruns by Amber Kral, but in game two, it took a bit for the bats to get going.
That is, until the seventh inning, when Mid-Prairie exploded for seven runs, to take the 8-1 victory over the Demons, to take the doubleheader sweep.
Kral cranked another homer in the second game to give her three on the night, while driving in eight total RBIs.
Washington has now lost eight of its last nine games, moving the team’s record to 8-16, while Mid-Prairie stands at 16-9.
For the Demons, the message was simple after the game.
“We have to win,” Washington head coach Angie Shrader said. “That’s plain and simple. The kids need to win to get that confidence up and we haven’t played our best softball, and if we did, we’d be a really good, unbelievable team. Hopefully we get there and if it comes on July 10 (Regional tournament vs. West Burlington), when we play our best softball, I’ll take it.”
In game one, Mid-Prairie didn’t wait to get started, using a Kral double to start the scoring, and an RBI single from Emma Troyer to make it 2-0 after a half inning.
In the second inning, Kral launched her first homerun of the night, a three-run shot that made it 6-0, but Washington responded in the bottom half of the inning.
The Demons strung four two-out hits together, loading the bases with Kolbi Breard, Lexi Redlinger and Anna Wheeler loading the bases, and Chayse Jaspering driving in two with a single of her own.
Kral sent her second homerun of the night out in the fourth inning, this time a two-run shot and in the fifth, Mid-Prairie plated four runs to enact the 10-run rule in five innings.
In the second game, Washington struck first in a pitchers duel with Jaspering leading off the third with a triple, and was driven in by Jessie Buchholz driving her in with a sacrifice fly.
Amber Linnenkamp was in the circle for the Demons and only allowed four hits through the first six innings.
“I think she was hitting her spots really well,” Shrader said. “Amber is a pitcher that always forces a lot of popups, and she was doing that tonight. She was making them swing at pitches they didn’t really want to swing at. Through five innings, she had a two-hitter going on, and through six, a four-hitter.”
In the top of the seventh, Chelsea Kral hit a double to drive the go-ahead run in, followed by an Alex Rath RBI, and Amber Kral’s third homer of the night to secure the victory for the Golden Hawks.
“The wheels started to come off,” Shrader said. “(Mid-Prairie) scored the run in the sixth, and I feel like the team feels like they have bricks on their shoulders. With it tied at one, we put pressure on ourselves and we have to find a way to fight through that. We are capable and have the skills, but we just have to find a way to keep fighting. In the seventh inning, they had their big inning and you could see the team’s frustration and lack of belief go down after every batter that came up. We played well for six innings, but we need a way to play well through seven.”
The Demons will take part in a tournament at Muscatine over the weekend, while Mid-Prairie will take on Cascade on Thursday night.