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Seward Softball Pitching Dominates Garden City

KSCB News - March 11, 2015 6:35 am

A pair of Seward County righthanders put the handcuffs on the Garden City Broncbusters Monday afternoon at Lady Saints Field in Liberal as Alexa O’Brien and Jaclyn Wagner dominated the Buster bats, each allowing just two hits in complete game 4-0 and 2-0 shutout wins to move the Lady Saints to the top of the Jayhawk West Conference standings at 3-1.

The Lady Saints were the first to score in game one of the twinbill as the first four batters of the Seward half of the 1st inning picked up singles, including RBI knocks from Vanessa Oakden and Grace Petersen to give them the early 2-0 lead. Later in the inning, Seward’s fifth hit of the frame came off the bat of Tiffanie Bolanos to score another run and after one it was Seward 3 and Garden City 0.

Seward starter Alexa O’Brien worked swiftly through the Garden City order in the 2nd and 3rd innings, but the Lady Saints bats all of a sudden went cold and it remained a 3-0 game in favor of Seward as the teams went to the 4th.

O’Brien continued to bewilder the Buster batters in the 4th, striking out a pair in a 1-2-3 inning, but the Lady Saints missed a prime opportunity in the bottom half of the frame, loading the bases for their middle of their order without being able to push a run across and it remained a 3-0 game.

Garden didn’t pick up their second hit of the game until the 6th inning with a two out single, but this time it was O’Brien’s catcher, Vanessa Oakden picking her up, gunning down a would be base stealer to end the inning and the threat to keep the Lady Saints on top 3-0.

In the Seward 6th, a misplayed fly ball on the infield by the Garden City defense allowed them to get their lead runner on and a one out double by Hannah Clark plated an insurance run, making it a 4-0 Lady Saint lead.

O’Brien did the rest, striking out her sixth and seventh batters of the game to finish things off, preserving her shutout and giving the Lady Saints a 4-0 win.

O’Brien improved to 6-3 on the year with the complete game shutout win. She allowed just 2 hits without walking a batter and struck out 7 Buster hitters. Offensively the Lady Saints put together 9 hits in the win, getting 2 hits and a run scored from the top two hitters in their lineup, Jaidyn Mawhinney and Kolby Hamilton.

SEWARD COUNTY/GARDEN CITY GAME ONE BOX SCORE<http://www.sewardsaints.com/sports/sball/2014-15/boxscores/20150309_5fq0.xml>

Game two was the same story all over again, just a little bit less Seward County offense.

This time it was Jaclyn Wagner who toed the rubber for the Lady Saints. Wagner breezed through the Buster bats in the top half of the 1st and did the same in the 2nd, retiring Garden City in order to keep it a scoreless game after two.

Garden City picked up their first hit of the game with a two out single in the 3rd, but it was water off Wagner’s back as the sophomore got the next hitter to groundout to end the inning.

The Lady Saints couldn’t get anything going however off of Buster lefty Barb Nigon and after another 1-2-3 inning by the Seward bats, the game remained scoreless.

The Busters put their first runner in scoring position in the 4th, but once again Wagner rose to the occasion, this time getting a pop out to end the trouble and keep her shutout intact.

There remained no score into the 5th when Wagner put another goose egg up on the Buster side of the scoreboard in the top half of the frame. In the bottom half though, Seward finally broke through, getting another clutch hit from Clark to drive home the game’s first run and a one out single from Mawhinney to plate another and make it a 2-0 game.

That was all Wagner needed as the righty blew through the Garden City order on just six pitches in the 6th and just five in the 7th to slam the door shut and give the Lady Saints a 2-0 win to sweep the doubleheader.

Wagner was brilliant in the circle for the Lady Saints, allowing just 2 hits in the shutout without walking a batter to improve to 6-3 on the year. Seward’s offense didn’t muster much, but it didn’t need to as the Lady Saints finished with 5 hits, 2 from Mawhinney at the top of the lineup in the victory.

SEWARD COUNTY/GARDEN CITY GAME TWO BOX SCORE<http://www.sewardsaints.com/sports/sball/2014-15/boxscores/20150309_wiqx.xml>

The Lady Saints improve their 2015 record to 12-8 with the sweep while taking over the top spot in the Jayhawk West standings at 3-1. Garden City drops to the .500 mark at 7-7 on the season and is now 1-3 in conference action.

Seward will continue a busy week on Wednesday when they host their third straight Jayhawk West doubleheader when the Barton Lady Cougars come to town for a 2:00 start.

Roy Allen

 

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