St. John’s edges WCA, 16-15 [UPDATED]Published 10:06am Tuesday, April 3, 2012 Updated 12:07pm Tuesday, April 3, 2012
The West Central Area girls softball team started play last week as they opened against St. John’s Prep in their first year in the Prairie Conference. The Johnnies edged WCA 16-15.
The Knights entered play with only sophomores and freshmen on their roster and look forward to a rebuilding year.
WCA started off strong with three consecutive hits by Lauren McLaughlin, Amber Oberg, and Amy Benson. A two-run RBI double by outfielder Mikaylah Stark made the score 5-3 in favor of the Knights after one inning.
The Johnnies answered back with a big third inning off of Knights starter Doranna Blasyck to go ahead 13-10. The lead was short-lived as the Knights tore through the fourth inning with speed on the bases by McKenna Blehr, Mclaughlin and Oberg.
Mikaylah Stark added her third hit of the game to lead the Knights and give them the lead 15-13 going in to the bottom of the fifth inning.
The last inning was filled with heartbreak for the Knights as Marisa Gaetz led off with a single. Two walks by Blasyck quickly loaded the bases for the walk-off hit to end the slugfest.
The loss was of little concern to the girls at that point as catcher Melissa Vikesland was helped off the field with a season-threatening knee injury. Speedster Jackie Oelke was taken to a medical facility after reagrivating a previous hip injury.
Freshman catcher Hailey Stark came off the bench and caught the rest of the day with Vikesland out and was impressive in her varsity debut.
“I was extremely proud of the girls today on how they came out and attacked offensively,” said new WCA head coach Bryan Poyzer. “My main concern right now is Jackie and Melissa. We have four key players who are now unable to play next week due to injury.”
Poyzer said the Knights are looking for others, with similar play such as Stark, to step in and do exactly what is needed.
The Knights lost the evening game to Royalton 18-1 and will travel to Ashby on Thursday.