Wildcats run-rule RangersMay 8, 2021
By COREY STOLZENBACH
BRETZVILLE - Jasper softball hasn't had much of an opportunity to get games in recently due to the weather, but the bats made it rain with a 12-2 run-rule win in six on Saturday afternoon.
The Wildcats (14-1) took on Forest Park (4-12) for this county rival showdown, and turned the game into their own Home Run Derby. Participants consisted of senior pitcher Mia Werner, who helped her own cause with a solo blast in the top of the second, junior Kennedy Matheis, who went deep for a solo shot in the top of the third, and fellow junior Megan Matheis, who connected for a three-run bomb in both the top of the first and top of the fourth, as Jasper homered in each of the first four innings.
"Honestly, I think it was a lot of our energy," Megan said. "We were really excited for this game. We had a lot of energy going in - especially on the bus and everything, and then coming out, we still have a lot of energy, and it was such a good environment to be in."
The Rangers made responded after Megan connected for her first big fly, doing some rallying - all with two outs. Sophomore Carley Begle got Forest Park on the board when her two-run single brought in junior Ali Welp and freshman Avery Riley for a 3-2 game.
"I liked our approach there in the first inning, and that's what I told those girls," Rangers coach Kelly Schroering said. "I felt like we were ready, we were ready to fight.
They hit a three-run homer in the first, but we came back in the bottom and we were able to attack."
However, Jasper's pitching and defense settled in after that, as Werner had a 1-2-3 bottom of the second, and continued to hold the Rangers off. Junior Kylie Morton worked the fourth and fifth innings, while freshman Elise Lampert did the honors of shutting the door to get the final three outs in the bottom of the sixth.
"I got a little predictable in my pitch calling to allow them to time up the changeup," Jasper coach Matt Pryor said. "Just like the players, I got to make adjustments as well. So, we talked about that with the pitchers and catchers that those were on me with pitch selection, but the defense really stepped up in not allowing any errors - diving all over the place. I love to see that extra effort."
Junior Madi Begle led off the bottom of the fifth with a double. However, Morton worked around this, as she generated three straight outs to strand the runner, and it remained 9-2.
"We're used to facing Werner, who was a little bit faster, and seeing the differences in pitches, I don't we adjusted quick enough," Schroering said. "I think we were ready to hit, which is something we talk about - being aggressive. And I think we were aggressive, we just weren't on time. So, that caused us some problems there."
The Wildcats tacked on three runs in the top of the sixth to be eligible for the run-rule, with freshman Ava Werner playing a huge part of it, as her RBI single drove in fellow freshman Molly Kissel. Ava then scored the 12th run of the game, as a wild pitch allowed her to take home and bring the game to its final score.
Forest Park is next set to compete Tuesday at home against Heritage Hills, but Jasper is scheduled to go right back into the fray on Monday at Gibson Southern.
"We want to go there and be offensively aggressive," Pryor said.
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