Bombers get hot, overpower No. 12 Raiders
HUXLEY - Ballard put it all together and Collins-Maxwell-Baxter was off its game from the start, resulting in a 10-0 Bomber victory over the Raiders in six innings June 23 at Gary Telford Field in Huxley.
Ballard (12-15) jumped on CMB (17-7) for four runs in the first inning and never looked back. The Raiders entered the game rated No. 12 in Class 3A, but Ballard is used to the tough competition, playing in a Raccoon River Conference that features three other teams ranked in 4A.
“We came ready and we pounced on them,” Ballard pitcher Hannah Elliott said. “We hit the ball and fielded everything.”
The Bombers were up 4-0 after one inning of play. After holding CMB to one hit in the top of the first, the Bombers received a two-run double from Meredith Ossian, followed two batters later by an RBI single from Karlee Ahrenholtz and an RBI from Isabell Hobbs.
CMB pitcher Abbey Kahler settled down after that to pitch well through the next three innings. Over the second through fourth frames, Ballard was limited to one hit and Kahler recorded six strikeouts with no walks during that span to keep CMB in the game.
But the Raider offense struggled to find a groove against Elliott.
Holly Jessen singled for CMB in the second inning; then the Raiders mounted a threat in the third when Katie Camp reached on an infield hit with two outs and Kahler followed with a double. But Camp was run down between third base and home for the final out of the inning.
CMB’s best threat came in the top of the fourth. Payge Jurgens drew a leadoff walk, Mikayla Eslinger followed with a single, then moved up a base on a Ballard error to put runners on second and third with no outs.
Mikayla Houge reached on a fielder’s choice to load the bases with no one out for the Raiders. But Elliott forced Jessen to fly out to second base, then she struck out Jordynn Wesselink and forced Hannah Caple to ground out to second to get out of the inning without any damage done.
“We had bases loaded nobody out (in the fourth) and our girl who just had a base hit pops out and a girl strikes out - things we don’t do,” CMB head coach Troy Houge said. “We just weren’t out there ready to play ball tonight. I’ll give (Ballard) credit - they came out and were ready to go.”
CMB only had one hit over the final two innings. The Raiders finished with six hits and Elliott recorded four strikeouts with only one walk.
“My curveball - they were just fouling it off,” Elliott said. “Just drilled that pitch more than half the time and my changeup was good.”
In the bottom of the fifth inning, Ballard regained its mojo on offense. The Bombers put two runs on the board as Olivia Hall and Ossian hit back-to-back RBI doubles.
The Bombers put together their second four-run inning in the bottom of the sixth to end the game an inning early. Skylar Rigby drove in a run, Hall followed with a two-run double and Ossian finished off the Raiders with an RBI single.
“We came ready to hit,” Ossian said. “We knew she’d be a good pitcher, so we worked really hard in the cages the last few days and just came with the attack mentality and ready to hit the ball.”
Ossian went 3-for-4 with two doubles and four RBI. Hall belted two doubles and drove in three runs; Rigby went 3-for-4 with a double, three runs and one RBI and Jenna Moody wound up 2-for-4 with two runs for the Bombers.
Ahrenholtz finished 1-for-3 with an RBI, Hobbs had one single and RBI apiece, Rachel Newell collected one single and run apiece and Kennedy Newell was 1-for-3.
Kahler picked up three hits, including a double, and Jessen, Camp and Eslinger each singled once for CMB. Kahler finished with an impressive 10 strikeouts against two walks in six innings for CMB in a losing effort.
Ballard 10, CMB 0
CMB 000 000 - 0 6 1
B 400 024 - 10 14 1
CMB: Abbey Kahler and Holly Jessen.
B: Hannah Elliott and Skylar Rigby.
2B: CMB - Kahler. B - Olivia Hall 2, Meredith Ossian 2, Rigby.