By Dave Pearce
The North Posey Lady Vikings can see the light at the end of the tunnel. However, as the old adage goes, it could be the light of an oncoming train.
After opening the softball season with three of the toughest teams in the area, the Lady Vikings will find things tougher on Thursday when they will play perrennial area power Gibson Southern.
Unlike the teams they have faced so far, the Vikings are playing with several new and younger players on their roster. They opened against three teams who each have eight of their nine starters back from last season. On Thursday, the Titans will be no different as they have almost everyone back from a very successful team last season.
But on Friday night and Saturday, the experience of the older players showed through as the Vikings bowed to Henderson County by an 8-0 count. The Lady Vikings were able to muster only one hit in that contest, just as they did in the opener against Mater Dei.
But on Saturday, North Posey Coach Gary Gentil was able to see some improvement from his team as they were able to garner five hits over in Carmi, Ill., despite falling again by an identical 8-0 score.
“We hit the ball better, finally, over in Carmi,” Gentil said of his youthful troopers. “But we still were unable to string them together to get some runs in. We had five hits against Carmi.”
The game could not have began much better for the homestanding Lady Bulldogs. Sophomore hurler Ashley Schorr placed the first pitch of the game just where her coaches wanted it, low and outside. However, Carmi’s lead-off batter was sitting on it and put the first pitch of the game over the fence to give the Lady Bulldogs a 1-0 lead.
But after that, the Lady Viking pitcher settled in and with a solid defense behind her, played even with the Lady Bulldogs through the fourth inning. But it would be in the fifth and sixth innings when the defense got shaky and a couple of mental errors led to six runs for the Lady Bulldogs to salt the game away.
The Lady Vikings entered the Carmi game with a grand total of two hits and no runs in their first two outings. Madi Elpers had the team’s only hit against Henderson County. But five different players got hits and several others were robbed by great defensive plays on the part of the Lady Bulldogs.
Kelsey Owen, Amy Brandenstein, Megan Baehl, Ashley Shorr and Anna Will each had base hits for the Lady Vikings against Carmi.
“We were pleased with how the defense was against Henderson County as we only had one error in that game. Henderson County is just an outstanding team and a great offensive team,” Gentil said.
The Lady Colonels did what good hitting teams do. They got their timing down the first time through the batting order and then began hitting the ball hard against Schorr. Gentil then brought in Hailee Elderkin who completed the game. Schorr pitched the entire game against Carmi.
“We just had those two innings against Carmi where we made a couple of errors,” Gentil said. “But like we told the girls, we are seeing improvement and we just have to make sure we remain positive right now and pull together. They just have to keep their heads up and realize the level of the competition right now. This team is very similar to the way the girls’ basketball team had to open up this year. They kept working and plugging away and ended up with a very good season. I think these girls are going to do the same thing.”
After facing Gibson Southern on Thursday, the Lady Vikings will face Tell City on Friday and then will travel to the Barr-Reeve Invitational Tournament on Saturday.
By Dave Pearce
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