Softball: No. 1 seed Yorkville blanks Batavia
Sara Ebner didn't miss her perfect pitch and Madi Reeves was nearly perfect as No. 1-seeded Yorkville dominated ninth-seeded Batavia in Thursday's Class 4A regional final at Yorkville.
Ebner blasted a three-run home run in the bottom of the fourth inning and Reeves yielded just a walk and a single as the Foxes won 10-0 in five innings.
Yorkville (22-4) advances to face Oswego East in Tuesday's sectional semifinal, also at Yorkville. The Foxes already have beaten the Wolves twice this season.
"I was just thinking that I'm not going to swing at the first pitch unless it's that perfect pitch," Ebner said of her three-run blast to left field. "It was that perfect pitch and I just swung with all that I could and it just went over."
The homer, Ebner's team-leading sixth, gave the Foxes a 10-run cushion and Reeves finished things up in the top of the fifth.
Reeves, who struck out 17 in no-hitting Geneva Wednesday, nearly matched it Thursday.
Batavia (8-14) was able to break up Reeves' no-hit bid as Lauren Cole hit a sharp single to center field to lead off the fifth, but Reeves set down the next three batters she faced, tossing the one-hitter while walking just one and striking out nine.
"I just attack everybody the same way," Reeves said. "I know if I struggle that I have the offense behind me and the same with the defense. They always support me and I go in with the same mentality and just go towards whoever is in the box."
The Foxes are doing great things in the box themselves and received contributions up and down the lineup.
Mackenzie Melzer got things started, spanking a single between the shortstop and third baseman to ignite a four-run first inning. Kaitlyn Roberts, who would reach base three times with a walk and a pair of hits, walked and chugged all the way to second with Melzer already standing at third base after a steal and wild pitch.
Ellie Alvarez then followed with a two-run single off the center field fence. She would later score along with Avery Nehring, who had reached on an error, on Kayla Tranter's sharp single to left.
"We're a younger team and I think we've jelled really good at the beginning and I think it's going to take us far," Alvarez said. "Even if some of the girls aren't confident or in a slump or something we pick each other up, which I think is important. We always try to score first and set the tone for the game and today that really gave us the upper-hand."
In the third inning it was Lauren Koster and Ebner, players who had been retired in their previous at bats, who singled before Sam Davidowski delivered a two-run single to right center to make it 6-0.
"We're all very good hitters throughout the lineup and we're all relaxed even with two strikes on us," Ebner said. "We know that everyone can get that base hit when it's needed and when we get it the next person is like 'Let's do it.'"
Alvarez drove in her third run of the game with a single in the fourth inning, moved to third on Tratner's double and trotted home on Ebner's blast.
Meanwhile, the Bulldogs were held to Cole's single and a Leah Puttin walk.
"We had some good at-bats and we can hit, but today we just couldn't put the ball in play," Batavia coach Torry Pryor said. "You go down four runs early in the game against a tough pitcher and you're going to have a tough time."