One day after a wild 18-11 season-opening victory over Plainfield Central, St. Charles North's softball team discovered another way to win Wednesday afternoon.
Senior Sabrina Rabin (2-0) pitched a 4-hit complete game and received solid defensive support from her teammates during the North Stars' 3-0 nonconference triumph over Schaumburg (0-1) in St. Charles.
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Rabin, who played an instrumental role for the North Stars' Upstate Eight Conference River Division champions last season, did not overpower the Saxons but she was efficient.
The Northwestern-bound right-hander issued 1 walk and didn't record a single strikeout but also didn't allow the Saxons to put more than 1 runner on base throughout the contest.
"Our defense came ready to play," said Rabin. "You can't always have the strikeouts but you at least want to have playable plays."
"Her control was a lot better today," said North Stars coach Tom Poulin. "She pitched OK yesterday and she's getting there. It's the second time she has pitched outside since probably last fall. Once she gets clicking, she's as dominant as they get in the circle."
St. Charles North pushed across the game's first run in the second off Schaumburg junior pitcher Roxanne Kakareka.
Junior first baseman Abby Howlett scorched a double to straightaway center and Emily Brodner followed with a single to right-center and took second on the throw to third.
After a fielder's choice grounder resulted in an out at the plate, junior Erin Nemetz launched a sacrifice fly to center, driving home courtesy runner Abi Ginther for a 1-0 lead.
The North Stars added a pair of insurance tallies in the fifth.
Andrea Beal led off with a triple that landed at the base of the fence in center field and scored on an infield error to make it 2-0.
Credited with an RBI on the play, Rabin then stole second and raced home on Kaitlyn Waslawski's run-producing double to left-center.
"I'm happy that we pushed a couple across," said Poulin. "I think we can score in multiple ways. We can win a shootout -- a high-scoring game -- or we can manufacture a couple runs."
Brodner and Beal each went 2-for-3 for the North Stars, who finished with 7 base hits.
"I thought we hit the ball hard but some of them were right at people," said Poulin. "We were aggressive on the bases -- not like yesterday but Schaumburg is a tough opponent. I'm just happy to get a win. That's a strong conference and a strong team."
Playing errorless ball, the North Stars flashed some leather in the outfield.
Right fielder Holly Hagemann made a diving grab in right-center to rob Schaumburg's Shannon Felde of an extra-base hit in the fourth and left fielder Delaney Olinger recorded a shoestring catch of a Jamie Kudjer line drive for the second out in the fifth.
"Holly and Delaney made some diving catches," said Poulin. "Holly is one of the better defensive outfielders we've seen so we expect that out of her."
St. Charles North will face Montini Friday at the Dome in Rosemont.
"We know we have the talent," said Poulin. "I'm really optimistic about what will happen going forward."
Paige Alt (double), Sarah Schwind, Felde and Kakareka accounted for the Saxons' offense in their season debut.
"I would honestly say we played really well first-game out against a good team," said Schaumburg coach Ellen Abreu, whose team finished 20-10 last season. "We have some work to do obviously but it was a good first day. It's nice to be outside playing on dirt."