As the lights turned on at Scottsburg’s softball field, Brownstown Central’s fantastic freshmen showed what they could do on the field.
From Kelsey Schneider’s strong showing in the circle to Rylee May’s no-doubt second-inning home run to Addyson Coomer’s go-ahead RBI and key out in the final inning, they helped the Braves defeat North Harrison 5-3 in Wednesday’s second sectional semifinal game.
That puts the Braves up against the host Warriorettes for the sectional title at 6 p.m. today. Scottsburg defeated Silver Creek 5-1 in Wednesday’s other semifinal.
“From Day 1, I’ve been high on my freshman group,” Braves coach Monte Ault said.
May’s solo shot over the fence in center field pumped up the Braves offense. Brownstown came back in the top of the third with a one-out bunt single by Schneider to score Emily Singleton, who reached on an error and used her speed to make it to third base.
Alli Reynolds then made it to first on another Cats error, scoring Schneider to make it 3-0.
In the bottom of the fourth, North Harrison used three hits and two Braves errors to score twice to make it a one-run game.
The score was evened by Maddelyn Ivey in the bottom of the sixth when she slipped the ball over the center field fence.
With one out in the top of the seventh, May was intentionally walked for the third time. Coomer followed with her only hit of the game, a deep ball to right field to score Schneider, who reached on an error.
Rehgen Stuckwisch was walked to load the bases, and Zoe Stuckwisch’s ensuing sacrifice fly to center scored May for what would be the final run.
“We wanted to stay up, but I had the hitters up there that are capable of doing it,” Ault said. “Addy Coomer, she is capable of hitting the ball like that. I was glad she was up there. We get a key hit. I got Schneider on. I’d say with her speed, it causes trouble. Most of the time, I can get her to second base.”
In the bottom half, Schneider recorded her ninth strikeout, the Cats got a double but were thrown out trying to make it to third base and then shortstop Erin Singleton caught a short pop to end the game.
“It was an all-around team effort from pitching to we got Emily (Dillman) in to hit and she got a key hit,” Ault said. “Zoe Stuckwisch, she got three hits tonight. She came through. Then Rylee May, she has been hitting lights out. You see they put her on.”
Schneider went the distance in the circle, allowing seven hits and two walks.
“Schneider was on, and I’ve been proud of our defense all year,” Ault said.
Schneider helped her cause with two hits, two runs and an RBI. May had two runs and an RBI to go with her homer, and Emily Singleton scored the other run.
“I hope we’re jelling at the right time,” Ault said. “(The Warriorettes) are out to get us because we beat them during the year (4-1 on April 22). I think it’s going to be a game.”