Support plentiful for Lady Bobcats
Jennifer Sirridge took her customary center field position in the top of the eighth inning Thursday night against Piper.
The 2-2 tie had forced extra innings.
Piper advanced a runner to third base with two outs. Sirridge crouched into her defensive position and waited. The next pitch was hit softly over the shortstop. Sirridge took off, knowing her failure to secure the blooper would result in a Piper run and quite possibly a Lady Bobcats loss.
Sirridge dove and speared the ball out of the air. The inning, and threat, was over.
"She hit a fly ball behind short stop and I just ran and caught it," Sirridge said.
Her coach saw it differently.
"That catch was huge for our confidence and we seemed to carry that momentum over to our offense in the bottom of the eighth," BLHS coach Susan Mayberry said.
Sirridge takes a great deal of pride in what she can do defensively to help the team.
"Defense is the best part of my game," Sirridge said. "It is just easier and I think I am pretty good at what I do. I like center because I can take control over the whole field. I can also help back up my teammates."
With one out, Chelsey Patton drew a walk and advanced to third base when Megan Rehm laid down a bunt and created a throwing error.
Sirridge was up, looking to finish what she had started. The junior hit a sacrifice fly to left field that allowed Patton to tag up for the winning run.
"I was happy that I had a key role," Sirridge said.
Mayberry was especially excited that her center fielder saved the crucial run after BLHS allowed two fourth inning runs on consecutive dropped fly balls.
Despite the isolated mishaps, the coach remains confident.
"Defensively, we're doing well," Mayberry said. "We have had an opportunity to pick runners off, throw players out at the plate, and throw runners out attempting to steal. Our game plan is right where we want it to be, we just want to execute and finish plays. That's what we expect from now on. Laura Reed and Maggie Schroeder are playing very solid defensively."
Erin Shore recorded the victory in the first game. She went eight innings, facing 34 batters, and recorded three strikeouts, zero walks, seven hits allowed, and zero earned runs.
At the plate, Schroeder went 2-for-3 with a walk, and Patton scored two runs.
Mayberry likes the fact that this year's team has good depth and is receiving contributions from a bevy of sources.
"We don't consider our team as having stars," Mayberry said. "We certainly have players who are playing consistently well, but with this team we have people up
and down our lineup, defensively and offensively, that are capable.
"We would like to think that we have 12 players who are ready to play and
perform. If one player is struggling to get it done, we can insert someone who can step in and give it a shot. We like the fact we have kids who can adjust to different situations and fill the roles we need filled on our team."
Sirridge added that the team has great chemistry.
"I like (playing for Basehor-Linwood) a lot," Sirridge said. "We all get along very well. There are never any fights. We're all very good friends, and we hang out outside of softball. We are like a big family."
The Lady 'Cats dropped the second game 5-3.
Jenna Bunting took the loss. Patton went 2-for-4 with one RBI.
"We'd like to see Jenna Bunting contribute more on the mound, become more
consistent with her approach and focus of the game," Mayberry said.We need more from her pitching and her overall execution of pitches.he had a good game against Mill Valley and she needs to learn to take the good things from a start and carry it over to her next start."
What was the coach most pleased about during the doubleheader?
"That we fought and clawed and stayed determined in Game 1," Mayberry said."Even though we gave up too many runs in game two, we were still in a position to put runs on the board.e have had runners all over the bases, now we need do our job by scoring them.f we hit like we're capable, we win both of those
The offense was considerably better a few nights later when BLHS swept Tonganoxie 11-8 and 6-5.
Erin Shore recorded the victory in both games. The Lady 'Cats stormed back in both games for comeback wins.
In the first game, BLHS was at a 5-0 disadvantage. In the second game, the Lady 'Cats were down 5-2 in the top of the seventh before staging a dramatic comeback to claim victory.
"I think we are really good," Sirridge said. "I think we can make it far in the (state) tournament. We have a lot of potential."
Also this week, in junior varsity action, the Lady 'Cats destroyed Perry-Lecompton, 23-0 and 18-2, to move their record to 10-2 on the season.
In Game 1, Elizabeth Walker tossed her second no-hitter of the season to pick up the win.
In Game 2, Tiffany Jennings was the winning pitcher.
Next up, BLHS will travel to Lansing on Tuesday, April 24 for a doubleheader with the Lady Lions.
The games, which will be played at Lansing City Park, are scheduled to begin at 4:30 p.m.