Ballard tops Grinnell in regional quarterfinals

Story and photos by Joe RandlemanStaff Writer
Ballard tops Grinnell in regional quarterfinals

CARLISLE - The Ballard softball team saw what it takes to be a top-ranked team when the Bombers fell to No. 1 Carlisle, 14-0, in the Class 4A regional semifinals Saturday in Carlisle.

Carlisle pounded out 15 hits - including five that went for extra bases - and Wildcat pitchers Gabby Schnathorst and Maren Judisch combined for a four-hitter. Carlisle also went error-free and took advantage of four Bomber errors.

“They definitely paint a picture of what a program is and they set the bar,” Ballard assistant coach Charlie Husak said. “Ballard, we need to look at that bar and we need to go get it. We can, it’s just going to take some time. (Carlisle) is a great team - great coaches, fun to watch and class act, and they put us in a place where we know what we need to go and do now.”

The Wildcats plated three runs in the first inning, two in the second, four in the fourth and five in the sixth. A Taylor Dubois grand-slam homer in the sixth provided the exclamation point for the Wildcats.

Ballard did show signs of life at the plate against Schnathorst and Judisch.

Freshman Katie Sydnes broke up Schnathorst’s no-hit bid with a single in the bottom of the third inning. Sydnes added another single off Judisch in the sixth inning.

“Katie did a great job at the bottom of the lineup,” Husak said. “She saw the ball well and hit the ball hard both times. She’s a good little player, and I look forward to what she can do in the future at Ballard.”

Jenna Moody singled off Schnathorst to lead off the fourth inning and Kennedy Newell picked up an infield hit off Judisch in the final at-bat of her outstanding career during the sixth inning.

“Jenna had a nice hit up the middle and Kennedy ended up with an infield hit at the end there,” Husak said.

Ballard also got a chance to get three pitchers in the game.

Freshman Hannah Elliott took the loss after giving up six runs on eight hits in 2 ? innings. Eighth-graders Isabell Hobbs and Megan Hadaway also threw for the Bombers.

Hobbs allowed four runs on five hits in two innings. Hadaway gave up four runs on two hits and two walks in 1 ? innings.

“It was good to get the young pitchers in and give them a taste of this environment and a taste of this level so going forward, we get this [nerves] out of their system,” Husak said.

Ballard finished the season at 18-20.

Carlisle 14, Ballard 0 (6)

C 320 405 - 14 15 0

B 000 000 - 0 4 4

C: Gabby Schnathorst, Maren Judisch (6) and Agatha Beier, Kennedy Preston (6).

B: Hannah Elliott, Isabell Hobbs (3), Megan Hadaway (5), Elliott (6) and Skylar Rigby.

WP: Schnathorst.

LP: Elliott.

2B: C - Mackenzie Lose, Meredith Hoffman.

3B: C - Taylor Dubois.

HR: C - Beier, Dubois.

GRINNELL - Ballard opened postseason play with a 4-1 road victory over Grinnell in the Class 4A regional quarterfinals July 7 at Grinnell.

The Bombers took a 3-0 lead after scoring a run in the second, another in the third and one more in the sixth.

Grinnell came back with a run in the bottom of the sixth, but Ballard answered with another score in the seventh. Bomber pitcher Hannah Elliott kept the Tigers off the board in the bottom of the seventh to wrap up the victory as Ballard improved to 18-19 on the season.

Elliott gave up one earned run on five hits with five strikeouts and two walks in a strong seven-inning showing to get the win. She was backed by a Bomber offense that produced 10 hits.

Kennedy Newell went 3-for-4 with a run, Skylar Rigby was 2-for-4 with a run and Olivia Hall finished 2-for-4 with an RBI to pace the Bomber attack. Sydne Struve was 1-for-3 with a run, walk and a steal; Karlee Ahrenholtz doubled, walked and drove in a run and Meredith Ossian ended up 1-for-3 with an RBI.

Rachel Newell added a steal, run and RBI for the Bombers.

Ballard 4, Grinnell 1

B 011 001 1 - 4 10 NA

G 000 001 0 - 1 5 NA

B: Hannah Elliott and Skylar Rigby.

WP: Elliott.

2B: B - Karlee Ahrenholtz.