Schedule doesn’t let up with seven tourney games this weekend
By Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican
With just a little over six weeks in the high school softball season from the season opener to districts, games have to be nearly back-to-back.
The Chase County Lady Longhorns are feeling that with six games last week over four days.
It doesn’t let up, either.
After playing a JV double-header at Wray, Colo., Tuesday, the team will have their stamina tested this weekend at the Scottsbluff Tourney.
Five varsity games and two JV contests are on Chase County’s Friday-Saturday schedule in Scottsbluff.
After that, the Lady Longhorns travel to Gering on Tuesday, Sept. 11, for a pair of double-headers.
Coach Denise Smith said the schedule does test her team. Such a packed schedule doesn’t allow for much practice time in between, she said.
As of Monday, the Lady Longhorns were still looking for their first win, but Coach Smith said she is seeing some individual improvement at specific positions.
However, they need to cut down on their fielding errors, which has been a factor in some of the recent losses, she said.
For Chase County, the schedule at Scottsbluff starts Friday with a 10:30 a.m. varsity game vs. Scottsbluff. See the complete schedule attached.
On Tuesday, the varsity double-header in Gering gets underway at 4:30 p.m. Class B Gering was 6-2 early this week.
Chase County dropped a pair of varsity games Aug. 28 at Holyoke, Colo., 12-8 and 15-5.
The Lady Longhorns had a 7-4 lead going into the fifth, but Holyoke scored eight in their half of the inning as Chase County committed five straight errors. Seven of Holyoke’s runs came with two outs.
“That just killed us,” she said.
Chase County was doing well at the plate with 10 hits, but too many errors cost them the game, she said. Chase County also left nine runners on base.
Hitting for Chase County were Ally Vrbas, three singles; Jodi Koellner, double; Anna Bauerle, two singles; Michaela Space, two singles; Claire Kuenne, single; and Emma Mollendor, single.
Bauerle pitched the entire game, walking two and giving up 10 hits. No strikeouts were recorded.
Chase Co. 2 4 0 1 0 1 0— 8
Holyoke 3 1 0 0 8 0 0—12
Coach Smith feared the earlier loss would affect her team’s morale heading into the second varsity game, and it did. They took a 15-5 loss.
After a scoreless first inning for Chase County, Holyoke sent seven across home in their half of the first.
“That dug a hole to deep,” Smith said.
Chase County still had seven hits in the game to Holyoke’s 11, and left seven runners on base. The Lady Longhorns scored in the second and fourth innings.
Hitting were Koellner, single and triple; Space, two singles; Vrbas, double; and singles from Bauerle and Kuenne.
Bauerle was also on the mound the entire game for Chase County, walking four and giving up 11 hits. No strikeouts were recorded.
The game ended after five on the 10-run rule.
Chase Co .0 1 0 4 0— 5
Holyoke 7 0 4 4 0—15
So. Valley double-header
Chase County hosted Southern Valley for their home opener last Thursday at Schroeder Park.
The Lady Longhorns last in two shortened games, 8-0 and 14-2.
The team faced a different pitcher than the one they batted against in two other outings against Southern Valley this season. That may have been a factor in her team’s one hit in the first game and three in the second.
Abbi Vetter had the only hit for Chase County in the opener, a single in the fifth inning.
Errors again took their toll on Chase County, tallying six in the first game.
Bauerle was on the mound for the Lady Longhorns, striking out three, walking nine and giving up three hits.
Chase Co. 0 0 0 0 0—0
So. Valley 3 0 0 3 2—8
In the second game last Thursday, the Lady Longhorns had three hits, but fell after four innings, 14-2.
Southern Valley started the same pitcher, Smith noted, and she felt her team did a little better at the plate.
Hitting for Chase County were Cassie Burpo, Bauerle and Vetter, all with singles.
Vetter started on the mound for Chase County, completing two innings. She walked seven, gave up one hit and had no strikeouts. Bauerle finished the game, recording two walks and gave up three hits. No strikeouts were recorded.
Chase Co. 0 2 0 0— 2
So. Valley 2 7 1 4—14
Perry, Okla. games
Chase County had a different team on its schedule Friday night as they hosted Perry, Okla., High School, coached by Imperial native Bryan Hayes. Varsity and JV games were played.
Chase County dropped both contests. The varsity lost 15-0 and the JV lost 14-4.
In the three-inning varsity game, Chase County went one-two-three at the plate all three innings, as Perry’s pitcher struck out seven of the nine Lady Longhorns at the plate.
Perry recorded 11 hits against the Chase County defense. Bauerle pitched the three inning, recording just one walk and no strikeouts. Game scoring:
Chase Co. 0 0 0— 0
Perry 14 1 0—15
The second game featured a JV contest, with Perry taking a 14-4 win after four.
Chase County recording two hits, singles from Burpo and Vetter.
Burpo had her first start of the season on the mound, pitching all four innings. She struck out two, walked four and gave up nine hits.
Following the games, the two teams got to know each other better at a spaghetti supper at the nearby United Methodist Church.