COLLINS - An early spurt on offense gave the Collins-Maxwell softball team the spark it needed to down Colfax-Mingo, 4-0, in a battle of ranked teams July 1.

The Spartans, ranked first in Class 1A, scored two runs in the first inning. That’s all the support ace pitcher Mikayla Houge needed as she limited a Tigerhawk team rated 15th in 2A to just three hits.

Houge finished with nine strikeouts and two walks in seven innings. She was backed by an offense that totaled six hits and five steals.

Collins-Maxwell added an insurance run in both the fifth and sixth innings to secure the win and improve to 22-1. Alexis Houge was 2-for-3 with two runs and a steal, Reagan Franzen 2-for-3 with a double and a run and Mikayla Houge singled and drove in two runs.

Hannah Caple was 1-for-3 with a single and an RBI, Emma Kahler walked, stole two bases and scored, Hanah Jurgens drove in a run, Trinity Stover picked up one walk and steal apiece and Avery Fricke stole a base for the Spartans.

Colfax-Mingo fell to 19-6. Colbee Cunningham struck out five and walked two in six innings as the losing pitcher and she also doubled at the plate for the Tigerhawks.

Collins-Maxwell 4, Colfax-Mingo 0

Colfax-Mingo 000 000 0 - 0 3 NA

Collins-Maxwell 200 011 X - 4 6 NA

Colfax-Mingo: Colbee Cunningham and Chelsea Russell.

Collins-Maxwell: Mikayla Houge and Hannah Caple.

WP: Houge.

LP: Russell.

2B: Colfax-Mingo - Russell. Collins-Maxwell - Franzen.

RICEVILLE - Collins-Maxwell went 2-0 at the Riceville Invitational June 29, whipping Riceville and Newman Catholic by a combined margin of 20-1.

Collins-Maxwell defeated Riceville by a 12-0 score in three innings. The game was an official Iowa Star Conference outing, putting Collins-Maxwell at 13-0 in the conference.

The Spartans scored four runs in all three innings of play. Mikayla Houge limited the Wildcats to one hit and struck out seven as the winning pitcher.

Reagan Franzen was 3-for-3 with a run and three RBIs, Hannah Caple 2-for-2 with a double and three RBIs, Houge homered and drove in two runs and Alexis Houge 1-for-1 with two walks, two steals and three runs to pace Collins-Maxwell offensively. Trinity Stover was 1-for-2 with a run and a steal, Ella Kahler went 1-for-3 with an RBI and Jane’e Jones stole three bases and scored a run.

Morgan Fair gave up nine earned runs and walked three in 2 ⅓ innings as the losing Riceville pitcher. Josie Gansen singled for the only Wildcat hit.

Collins-Maxwell handed Newman Catholic an 8-1 setback. The Spartans did all their damage at the plate early, scoring two runs in the first inning and three in each of the next two frames.

Mikayla Houge was 2-for-4 with three RBIs; Ella Kahler went 2-for-3 with a double and a run; Trinity Stover singled, walked twice and scored two times and Emma Kahler was 1-for-3 with a walk and two runs and RBIs apiece for Collins-Maxwell at the plate. Alexis Houge singled, scored twice, stole a base and walked once; Olivia Pasquariello ended up 1-for-2 with a walk and a steal; Carrie Baldwin stole a base and scored and Brailyn Tankersly walked once.

Mikayla Houge was again the winning pitcher against Newman Catholic. She went five innings and allowed one run on one hit with 10 strikeouts and two walks.

Franzen threw two scoreless innings with two strikeouts for the Spartans.

Macy Kellar surrendered eight runs and had three walks in 2 ⅔ innings as the losing pitcher for Newman Catholic. Kealan Curley singled and scored and Lily Castle drove in a run for the Knights.

Collins-Maxwell 12, Riceville 0 (3)

CM 444 - 12 9 NA

R 000 - 0 1 NA

CM: Mikayla Houge and Hannah Caple.

R: Morgan Fair, Josie Gansen (3) and Abby Retterath.

WP: Houge.

LP: Fair.

2B: CM - Caple.

HR: CM - Houge.

Collins-Maxwell 8, Newman Catholic 1

NC 000 010 0 - 1 1 NA

CM 233 000 X - 8 8 NA

NC: Macy Kellar, Madi Elwood (3) and Ellie Determen, Emma Weiner (3).

CM: Houge, Reagan Franzen (6) and Caple, Kenzi Wierson (4).

WP: Houge.

LP: Kellar.

2B: CM - Ella Kahler.