Haley Alban watched from the dugout Saturday as Burlington Central scored 9 runs in three innings off Carlie Haraden.
The Libertyville senior replaced Haraden in the fourth inning of the first game of a doubleheader and threw 11 scoreless innings to help the Wildcats to a sweep of the Rockets, 10-9 and 3-0, at Rocket Hill.
Contact information ( * required )
"I hit a lot of my spots," Alban said. "That was working really well for me. Andi (Katz) did a good job of calling pitches behind the plate."
Central (6-5) scored four times in the first, twice in the second and three times in the third, including a 2-run double from Kassiday Gaylord, to take a 9-2 lead.
Libertyville (12-0) had the first eight batters reach base in the fifth, including five of the first six batters reaching either by walk or hit by pitch as Emily Kisch struggled to find the plate in the windy conditions. Jamie Stevens and Taylor Zoellick drew back-to-back bases-loaded walks to bring in runs.
Michaela Mooney followed with a two-run single to make it 9-6. Alban singled to drive in Zoellick. Taylor Oberman singled to left to bring in two and tie the game at 9-9. Oberman would score the eventual game-winning run on a throwing error on Jessie Lauret's infield single.
"It was patience and executing what we wanted to do," Libertyville coach Elissa Wisniewski said. "We knew we didn't want to hit in the air with the wind (blowing in) like this. We wanted to hit down and hard."
Alban (6-0) allowed baserunners in each of her 4 innings in the first game but was always able to work out of the trouble. She gave up 3 hits, walked four and struck out seven in the opener.
In the second game, Alban allowed just 3 hits, walked one, hit one and struck out eight.
The Wildcats had 6 hits against Brooke Gaylord in the second game, but four of them came consecutively in the fourth inning. With two outs, Stevens, Alban, Mooney and Zoellick all had singles. Mooney's single scored one and Zoellick's single brought in two for the only runs of the game.
Gaylord (3-3) struck out 14 and walked one.
Central hit the ball well in the second game but it always seemed to be in the air, and the wind held up the ball for Libertyville to make a play.
"(The Wildcats) strung their hits together in one inning, keeping the ball down in these wind conditions," Rockets coach Wade Maisto said. "We had a couple balls hit on a normal day that are home runs or triples. They didn't not hit better than us in the second game. They just had better results."
Bekah Harnish, Tori Harvey and Kisch each had 2 hits in the opening game for Central. Kassidy Gaylord had a 2-run double in the third.