HHS softball takes pair from Nickerson

ORIGINALLY WRITTEN DON RATZLAFF
Strong pitching and fielding fueled the Hillsboro softball team to a comfortable sweep of their Thursday doubleheader at Nickerson.

Starting pitchers Laura Lindsay (4-1) and Janesa Klose (3-0) each allowed only three hits in the Trojans’ 9-1 and 12-1 victories that improved their season record to 7-1.

In Game 1, lead-off hitter Amanda Bina set the tone for the afternoon by hitting the fourth pitch of the game for an inside-the-park home run.

The Trojans led 2-0 after the first inning.

Nickerson scored its only run in the bottom of the second, thanks to a couple of Trojan errors on a ball hit by Andrea Dohrman.

But, with Lindsay stifling the Panthers the rest of the way, Hillsboro slowly increased its lead two runs in the fourth, three in the fifth and two more in the seventh.

The senior right-hander not only struck out a season-high nine batters and walked none, she went 3-for-5 at the plate and scored a pair of runs.

As a team, the Trojans combined for 11 hits but also stranded 12 runners on the bases.

In Game 2, Hillsboro followed a scoreless opening inning with a decisive four-run second.

Bina and Steph Abbott contributed run-scoring doubles to the surge.

Hillsboro added three runs in the third, one in the fourth and four more in the fifth to end the game by run-rule.

Abbott led the attack with two hits and a walk in four at-bats. She drove in two runs and scored one.

Klose, meanwhile, struck out six Panthers in five innings and issued no walks.

“Both pitchers kept the batters guessing. These were excellent games for both Laura and Janesa,” coach Stephanie Sinclair said. “And we played great defense tonight-only one error the whole night.”

Sinclair also was pleased with her team’s prowess on the base paths.

“We took advantage of Nickerson when errors were made, especially in Game 2,” she said.

Coming-The Trojans were scheduled to travel to Lindsborg on Tuesday for a doubleheader against Smoky Valley. On Friday, they will travel to Wichita to play a twinbill against Collegiate.

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