Things started off slowly for the Lady Mustangs on Wednesday, April 23 as the team didn’t rap out its first hit until Emily Greenwood’s single that sparked an eight-run third inning, and the Mustangs would go on to shut out the Spartans 11-0 in five innings.
Lathrop pitcher, Samantha Fonseca, seemed to have Oakdale’s bats puzzled as she retired the first six batters in order heading into the bottom of the third. Emily Greenwood, however, then stepped into the batter’s box and ripped the ball into the outfield for Oakdale’s first hit of the game. Caylie O’Neal followed up with a double that set up runners in scoring position. Melinda Koppinger reached on a throwing error that scored Greenwood to give Oakdale their first run of the day. With runners on the corners, Kindra Hackbarth hit into a fielder’s choice, but the hit was deep enough to score O’Neal from third. Oakdale continued their offensive power surge as Hanna Holland fell behind in the count 1-2 but slapped the ball deep into center field sending in two more runs on her double. Lauren Sanders continued to have a big season, as she would send in Holland on a one out RBI single to give Oakdale a 5-0 advantage. With two outs in the inning Megan Reali stepped in for Melanie Benge and took advantage of her plate appearance. Reali swung on an 0-1 pitch and sent it flying down the third base line and got it past the third baseman. That allowed both Sanders and Maddison Hackbarth, who got on base after a single of her own, to score and the rout was on.
“We had seven hits in the third inning to break open a scoreless game,” head coach Larry Loger commented.
Confidence was flowing for the Lady Mustangs after their scoring outbreak, and Rylie Pena entered the game in a relief pitching role and struck out the side. Oakdale continued to swing a big bat in the fourth as the team piled up three more runs headlined by a leadoff triple by Kindra Hackbarth, who was brought in by sister Maddi with an RBI double. Reali picked up where she left off the inning before as drove in another run to cap off the 11-0 thrashing.
“We wanted to come out relaxed today, and maybe we were a little too relaxed the first two innings. But we regrouped in the third and got the win,” said Greenwood on the team’s performance.
Greenwood went 2-for-2 in the game with an RBI.
The Lady Mustangs improved to a record of 17-1 overall and remain perfect in Valley Oak League play (11-0). The team looks to keep that streak going in league play when they return to the field on Wednesday, April 30 to take on East Union in Manteca.