Patriots get revenge on Huskies
ELM GROVE – Harrison Central handed Wheeling Park a decisive 9-1 setback in a softball game played in Cadiz on April 1.
The two squads have been heading in opposite directions since then, and especially of late, and it showed Thursday afternoon on Lisa’s Field at the Chambers I-470 Complex.
Thanks to early timely hitting and strong pitching from senior Carly Greer, the Patriots (14-4) exacted a little revenge by a 3-0 count over the Huskies.
“That was our second game, it was windy and we were coming off facing a slower pitcher and since (Katie) Ellzy is fast, it really made it tough, but we hit the ball well today and we played great defense,” Park head coach Dee Davis said.
Davis and her team knew runs would probably be hard to come by against Harrison Central (7-5) ace Katie Ellzy. Thus, making the most of their opportunities was clutch.
That happened in the first inning when the first three Patriot hitters of the contest singled. Senior catcher Ashley Sidon got the big hit, which scored Kelsi Johnson and Greer, making it a 2-0 contest.
“Scoring early was big,” Davis continued. “We have girls that have short, quick bats and you need that against Ellzy’s fastball because she tries to blow it by you. We talked about keeping our hands in and ripping it.”
A two-run deficit usually isn’t something to become overly concerned with, but the way Harrison is scuffling at the plate of late, it felt like about a six- or seven-run lead for head coach Donnie Bethel.
“We had some better at-bats, and hit the ball decently at times, but until we prove we can hit the quality pitch on a consistent basis, we’ll continue to be a very average team,” Bethel said. “Unfortunately, we’ve had some things happen and we’re not as strong of a team as we were early in the season.”
Harrison Central recorded an extra base hit in both the fourth and sixth innings, but both came with two outs and it failed to move the runner any further.
Greer, who was sharp throughout the contest, induced a come backer in the fourth to strand Ellzy, who had doubled and then got a strikeout to leave Shianne Nameth, who had doubled, at third.
“The only way you get yourself out of a slump is to keep hitting,” Bethel said. “We’re going to keep swinging and hopefully it’ll turn around and we’ll score some runs.”
Wheeling Park pushed across an unearned, insurance run in the sixth when Morgan Karnell, who had doubled, raced home on a throwing error.
Ellzy, who suffered her second tough-luck loss in three days, fanned seven and walked one. Greer, meanwhile, also struck out seven and issued nary a free pass.
Harrison Central, which is fighting for its OVAC Tournament life, returns home to face St. Clairsville in a pivotal Class 4A game this afternoon.
Harrison Central000 000 0 – 0 4 2
Wheeling Park 200 001 x – 3 8 0
HC-Ellzy lp (7K, 1W) and Jones. Ellzy D, S; Nameth D.
WP-Greer wp (7K, 0W) and A. Sidon. A. Sidon S, 2rbi; Greer 2S; Johnson 2S, Karnell S, D.