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posted: 5/9/2010 12:01 AM

Patrash powers Stevenson

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By Irv Solomon

Stevenson leadoff batter Emma Patrash usually doesn't swing at the first pitch, nor does she boast a lot of power.

So to everybody's surprise, including her own, she hit Jenna Ehrensaft's first pitch of Saturday's nonconference softball game over the 200-foot sign in left field for her first home run of the year.

Patrash added an RBI single in the second inning, as he Patriots went on to win 5-3.

"I felt really good and I had watched (Ehrensaft) pitch beforehand," Patrash said. "She put the first pitch right down the middle and I was ready for it."

"Emma usually doesn't hit for that kind of power," said Stevenson's coach Larry Friedrichs, whose Patriots improved to 17-12. "She's a good solid hitter and a great leadoff batter, but she usually doesn't go after the first pitch. So it was nice to see her be aggressive out there today."

Stevenson starting pitcher Allie Micucci won her 12th game of the season by scattering 7 hits, striking out seven and hitting a batter.

"We buckled down when we needed to," Micucci said. "I hit my corners. My change-up was working nice and my defense really helped today."

Jordan Willis doubled, singled and drove in a run for the Patriots, while Genny Duffy also had 2 hits.

After Evanston tied the game in the bottom of the first inning, the Patriots scored two runs in the second, one in the third and one in the fifth.

Evanston (12-14) added single runs in the fourth and fifth, then put its first two runners on base in the seventh.

But with runners on second and third and nobody out, Micucci helped herself by snaring two groundballs. She got the last Wildkit hitter to fly out to right fielder Heather Cohen for the final out.

"We've had some games where we just can't make outs and get a lot of two-out hitting," Friedrichs said. "Then there are some games like today where we get the leadoff batter on and get them past second base. We've had games where we left 11, 12 or 13 runners on base. We won, but we just didn't get the big hits at key times."

Evanston coach Kristen Proffitt was pleased with her team's effort.

"I think everyone was hoping we could tie the game after having runners on second and third," she said. "I was disappointed when we didn't score, but I was happy with the way we played."