Softball team wins four of five

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MTT News's picture
By: 
Rob Reischel
Brianna Buss and Middleton's girls softball team had a terrific week, winning four of five games./Times-Tribune photo by Mary Langenfeld

Last week marked an exciting one for the Hibner Family.

First, Middleton softball coach Perry Hibner watched his team win four of five games during an action packed week. Then, Hibner’s oldest son got married last Saturday.

The Cardinals defeated Madison West, 11-2, last Monday and rolled past Madison La Follette, 15-4, last Tuesday. Middleton dropped a 10-5 decision to Sun Prairie last Wednesday, but rebounded with a 12-5 win over Beloit Memorial on Thursday and an 8-3 victory over Janesville Parker on Friday.

“I was pleased that we focused on the task at hand each day and didn't look too far ahead,” Hibner said. “After all the inclement weather we've had this spring, I think the girls were just excited to be playing every day.”

Here’s a recap of the Cardinals’ week:

• Middleton 11, Madison West 2 — Senior Makenzie Kopp struck out 11 as the Cardinals beat the Regents last Monday at Jefferson Middle School. 

“Makenzie did a great job,” Hibner said. “I know she was frustrated that some of her pitchers weren't called strikes, but she persevered.”

Nine players had hits for Middleton and junior Sophie Schafer drove in three runs.

“It wasn't our best game, but I liked how we improved at the plate as the game went on,” Hibner said. “We were also aggressive on the bases, which is crucial when you aren't hitting the ball the way you want.”

• Middleton 15, Madison La Follette 4 (5) — Sophomore Ashley Bindl had three hits and junior Jessica Parente had four RBI as the Cardinals beat the Lancers in five innings last Tuesday at Olbrich Park.

Kopp drove in three runs, while six Middleton players had at least two hits. Parente and senior Rachel Everson each doubled off the wall.

“Those would have cleared the fences by 15 or 20 feet if we had been playing at home,” Hibner said.

Junior Lauren Banke did a solid job on the mound, allowing six hits and only one earned run to get the win.

“Lauren has been very good at shortstop, but we are going to continue to need her to give us quality starts on the mound,” Hibner said of Banke. “She worked out of some jams and did a pretty good job keeping the La Follette hitters off balance.”

• Sun Prairie 10, Middleton 5 — Sun Prairie scored four runs in the first inning and added four runs in the sixth after Middleton had closed within 5-2. Skylar Muller had a double and triple and drove in three runs for Sun Prairie.

Middleton finished the game with eight errors.

“We aren't going to win many games with eight errors or only putting pressure on their defense in a couple of innings,” Hibner said. “We are better on defense than that. I'm sure it was an aberration. We'll learn from it and try to do better the next time we play Sun Prairie.”

• Middleton 12, Beloit Memorial 5 — The Cardinals pounded out a season-high 17 hits and rebounded with a win over the Purple Knights last Thursday.

Everson led the way with four hits, while senior Hanna Fisher opened the scoring with a three-run home run in the first.

The Purple Knights rallied to take a 4-3 lead after two innings, but the Cardinals erupted for six runs in the third. Juniors Brianna Buss and Hannah Edington each had two-run singles in the third.

“I was thrilled that we were aggressive at the plate throughout the game,” Hibner said. “We hit the ball well against both pitchers they used, which hasn't always been the case for us against other teams. We are a very good team when we swing the bats like that.”

Hibner wasn't thrilled with his team's base running, however, noting the Cardinals had at least five mistakes.

“We can't get picked off with the bases loaded, over-run bases, stay on third on a steal attempt or try to advance to third on a hard-hit ball to the shortstop,” he said. “We did all of those things in that game. We need to clean those things up or they will cost us in the future.”

• Middleton 8, Janesville Parker 3 — Kopp didn't allow an earned run, struck out nine and didn't walk a batter.

With Hibner at his son’s rehearsal dinner, Middleton was led by assistant coaches Rich O'Connor and Amy Siedschlag.

Katrina Anderson led the Cardinals with three hits, while Edington smashed a two-run double to left-center in the third to give Middleton a 5-2 lead. Fisher also drove in two runs for the Cardinals.

“I like that even though we didn't have our 'A' game, we not only won, but pulled away,” Hibner said. “We'd like to dominate every game, but when we don't, I want us to compete and find a way to get things done. We did that against Parker.”

After a grueling week, Middleton sat in third place in the Big Eight Conference with a 5-2 record. Janesville Craig leads the league with an 8-0 mark, while Sun Prairie (6-1) is in second.

“We're right in the thick of things,” Hibner said. “Janesville Craig has certainly proven it is the team to beat, but a number of teams are right behind them, including us. We want to continue to get better and I certainly believe we will.”

Everson, Kopp honored: Everson and Kopp have been selected to play in the Wisconsin Fastpitch Coaches Association all-star games on June 12-13 at Woodside Sports Complex in Wisconsin Dells.

“It's a great honor and Rachel and Makenzie are very deserving,” Hibner said. “It's nice to see them recognized for all they have accomplished.”

 

April 21

Middleton 8, Janesville Parker 3

Janesville Parker ………. 002 010 0 — 3  5  3

Middleton ………………. 212 210 x — 8  8  3

Pitchers: Malphy (L; 3-5-4-0-3), Nenno (3-2-1-2-2), Kopp (W; 7-5-0-9-0).

Leading hitters: Malphy (JP) 2x3, Anderson (M) 3x3. HR: Rosga (JP). 3B: Nenno (JP). 2B: Edington (M), Roberts (M).

 

April 20

Middleton 12, Beloit Memorial 5

Middleton …………….. 306 101 1 — 12  17  1

Beloit Memorial …..….. 130 000 1 — 5  8  7

Pitchers: Banke (W; 7-8-5-3-5); Walker (L; 3-9-3-1-2), Brown (4-8-2-1-2).

Leading hitters: Banke (M) 3x5, Wettstein (M) 2x5, Everson (M) 4x5, Fisher (M) 2x4, Bindl (M) 3x4. Williams (BM) 2x3, Swanson (BM) 2x4. HR: Fisher. 2B: Everson 2, Banke, Brickson (BM), Brown (BM), Williams 2.

 

April 19

Sun Prairie 10, Middleton 5

Sun Prairie …………… 400 014 1 — 10 9 2

Middleton …………..…. 000 023 0 — 5  7 8

Pitchers (ip-h-er-so-bb): Gardner (W; 7-7-3-9-3), Kopp (L; 6-8-2-3-1), Banke (1-1-0-0-0).

Leading hitters: Kromke (SP) 3x4, Muller (SP 2x4, Gardner (SP) 2x4), Fisher (M) 2x3. 3B: Muller. 2B: Muller, Anderson (M).

 

April 18

Middleton 15, Madison La Follette 4

Middleton …………………..  041 37 — 15 15 1

Madison La Follette ……… 003 10 — 5  6  2

Pitchers (ip-h-er-so-bb): Banke W; 5-6-1-2-2), Imhoff (L; 5-15-12-5-3). 

Leading hitters: Bindl (M) 3x3, Banke (M) 2x4, Everson (M) 2x3, Parente (M) 2x4, Fisher (M) 2x3, Kopp (M) 2x4. 3B: Kopp, Rauls (ML). 2B: Everson, Parente, Banke, Bindl, Edge (ML), Conners (ML).

 

April 17

Middleton 11, Madison West 2

Middleton ………….…….023 042 0 — 11  13  3

Madison West ………… 101 000 0 — 2  2  7

Pitchers (ip-h-er-so-bb): Kopp (W; 7-2-1-11-3), Balas (L; 7-13-2-3-2).

Leading hitters: Banke (M) 2x5, Wettstein (M) 2x5, Everson (M) 2x5, Parente (M) 2x3, Buss (M) 2x3. 2B: Fisher (M).

 

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