HHS .500 after Smoky sweep

Hillsboro’s softball team finished with a .500 regular-season record following a sweep of the Smoky Valley Vikings Tuesday in Linds­borg.

The wins gave the Trojans five wins in the final six games for a 10-10 record.

Smoky Valley jumped to a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Pitcher Taylor Helmer walked the first two batters. Following a strikeout and a force out, a single chased both base runners home.

In the top of the second, the game changed as Hills­boro unloaded for eight runs on seven hits. Ava Weis­beck, Helmer and Elli Weisbeck each drove in two runs with singles. Maria Nieto contributed an RBI double to give the Trojans an 8-2 lead.

After a shaky start, Helmer settled into a rhythm and did not allow another run until the fourth inning, when Smoky Valley pushed three runs across the plate. Jordan Otto led off with an over-the-fence home run. Two Trojan fielding errors contributed to the three-run inning.

Leading 8-5, Hillsboro responded with five more runs in the fifth, getting consecutive base hits by Klein, Jost, Ava Weisbeck, Sam Moss and Helmer, then capped by a single by Elli Weisbeck.

With Hillsboro leading 17-5, Smoky Valley managed one more run, but it was not enough to avoid the 10-run end.

Helmer stepped back into the circle for Game 2 and dominated the Vikings in an 11-0 shutout. The senior lefty allowed only five hits in the five-inning game.

Meanwhile, Hillsboro scored twice in the second inning, six times in the fourth and three more times in the fifth inning. Ava Weisbeck led the team with three hits, including a two-run triple, with three RBIs.

Klein, Jost, Nieto and Marler Bisbee contributed two hits each to the 13-hit attack.

PRATT—The Trojans began competition May 7, when they made the long bus trip to Pratt to make up Game 2 of a doubleheader that had been postponed April 20 due to weather.

Hillsboro was out of it from the start, and absorbed an 11-0 loss that ended in the sixth inning because of the run-rule.

Greenback pitcher Kami Theis limited the Trojans to 23 at-bats over six innings, allowing only three hits. She walked no one and struck out five Trojans.

Pratt wasn’t exactly a gracious host, scoring four runs against Trojan ace Taylor Helmer in the first inning. Three more scores in the second inning bumped the lead to 7-0. Pratt added two runs in the third and a run in the sixth to end the game.

Helmer absorbed the loss, surrendering nine hits, walking five batters and striking out only two. Hills­boro aided Pratt’s success with a fielding error in each of the first three innings that led to scores.

Regional update

Hillsboro moved into the semifinals Monday with a 12-2 win over Canton-Galva in the first round of the Class 2A regional tournament hosted by Canton-Galva in Galva. With the win, the Trojans will take an 11-10 record into the semifinal game against Marion (13-3) scheduled for 3 p.m. Wed­nes­­day, May 15, at Galva.

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