Mary Peters whipped up a winning batter for her little softball batter.
Fueled by her mom's blueberry pancakes, 5-foot-1 senior Allie Peters belted 2 homers and knocked in 6 runs to power Elk Grove to a season-opening, 15-1 win over Mundelein in five innings at the Fields of Dreams on a sunny but cold Saturday in Barrington.
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How's that for your breakfast of champions?
"I got to have blueberry pancakes every day," Peters joked.
"Today's my dad's birthday," the right fielder added, "so it was a special occasion."
Peters' effort against Mundelein was particularly special considering the game marked her first varsity start. Elk Grove coach Ken Grams inserted Peters into his starting lineup because all-area outfielder Brianna Leach is out with mono.
Peters played JV last season.
Said Grams, whose win was the 799th of his career: "I told her, 'If we find time for you (this season), good. If not, stick with it. Who knows what will happen?' "
Peters, batting in the No. 9 spot, came to the plate with the bases loaded and none out in a scoreless game in the bottom of the second. She promptly got hit in the back by a Nicole Parney pitch. Peters was neither hurt nor fazed.
"I just trucked along," she said with a shrug.
Peters' next plate appearance came with two runners on and none out in the third with the Grenadiers up 5-0. The left-handed hitter took Parney's pitch and deposited over the fence in right field.
She clubbed a 2-run homer to right in the fourth. This time, as she approached home plate, where her excited teammates waited for her, she threw her arms up and flashed a shrug of disbelief at what she just did again.
"I don't even know where they came from," Peters said of the homers. "I just felt it. ... Right?"
Peters hit home runs on JV last year, but nothing quite like the two she jacked Saturday.
"There wasn't really a fence (on the homers last year), so the ball just rolled," she said.
Peters finished 2-for-2, earning her another start Saturday, against Stevenson.
"She's certainly taken advantage (of her opportunity) right away," Grams said, smiling.
While Elk Grove starting pitcher Megan Eul pitched 4 shutout innings, striking out four, Parney lasted 3 innings for Mundelein. The little right-hander allowed 11 runs, but only 3 were earned.
"We don't really have strikeout pitchers, which isn't a bad thing," said coach Brett Wilhelm, whose Mustangs graduated their top two pitchers from last season. "They allow our defense to make plays, but our defense certainly did not make plays today."
Mundelein made 3 errors behind Parney and had mental lapses in the field, as well. Maria DeVito went 3-for-3 for Mundelein, which had only 4 hits, and Abbey Rosenow had a fifth-inning sacrifice fly.
"I'm very optimistic about this season," said Wilhelm, whose team racked up 25 wins last season. "I think we got a very good, young group. There are some talented softball players. But hopefully that's the last time we see that (performance similar to the one against Elk Grove). That's just unacceptable."
Elk Grove pounded out 16 hits, including three apiece by Aleece Duffy (RBI) and Gina Cirrincione (2 RBI). Besides Peters, Becca Maher (RBI), Brooke Barges (double, 3 RBI) and Alex Masnica each had 2 hits.