By Sam Graf
MASCOUTAH — Returning just five 8th graders in 2019, Mascoutah Middle School Softball Coach Nick Seibert expected Mascoutah’s season-opening against Freeburg to be a very tough one, indeed.
After all, the Hornets welcomed back 10 from last year’s team which had beaten a solid Lady Braves’ squad in 2018.
But the outcome wasn’t close. The Braves scored bunches of runs every at-bat in smacking down the Hornets,17-2, over four innings at Scheve Park, Monday, August 12.
Daisy Wilson, Olivia Schultz, Ellie Lowe, Lara Knoebel, and Addi Seibert touched home plate in the first inning with Lowe wrapping an RBI single to centerfield and Knoebel launching a home run to left.
“With only five, eighth graders, we are expecting the underclass to step up,”Seibert said. “Lowe can hit and run. We want to run at every opportunity and to put pressure on our opponents.
“We are looking to find our team identity. We want to play hard and fast — hustling on every play all year long. Today, we had beat out five, bang-bang plays at first base. Without these, who knows what the score would have been.”
While not getting a hit in the second inning, Schultz, Lowe, and Emma Hurlahe scored as the Braves took advantage of Freeburg issuing walks, errors, and passed balls.
Wilson, Schultz, Lowe (double), and Avery Boehn tallied hits in Mascoutah’s four-run third inning.
The game ended via the 15-run rule as the Braves scored five runs in the fourth inning on just two hits.Hurlahe and Boehm popped singles, and Wilson, Schultz, Lowe, Addi Seibert, and Boehm scored.
Pitcher Claire Stookey went the distance for the win, allowing only two hits — striking out two.
Next up, Mascoutah will battle at the O’Fallon Tournament, 3 and 6 p.m., at the Family Sports Park, Wednesday, August 14.