Niles uses 13-hit attack to eliminate DowagiacPublished 8:02pm Tuesday, May 28, 2013
EDWARDSBURG — The Niles softball team put on its hitting shoes and defeated Dowagiac 8-2 in the Division 2 Pre-District contest at Edwardsburg Tuesday.
The win advances the Vikings to the semifinal Saturday against Berrien Springs. The semifinal will start 30 minutes following the Edwardsburg-Lakeshore game, which is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m.
After a scoreless first inning, the Vikings put up a pair of runs on a double by Courtney Ankrapp and a home run by Molly VanDeKeere, the first of her career.
Niles added a run in the third inning on an RBI single by Ankrapp before scoring two more runs in the fourth to break the game open.
Hannah Porterfield lifted a sacrifice fly to drive in the first run of the inning for the Vikings and Tala Gentry reached based on an infield single to plate the game’s fifth run.
Dowagiac made a bid to get back in the game in the sixth inning, scoring a pair of runs on its only three hits off of VanDeKeere.
Kristyn Turner opened the inning with a single and advance to second on a sacrifice bunt by Amanda Craft. Kourtney Mitchell singled to put runners at second and third after she advanced on a throw to the plate by Niles.
Rachel Bailey grounded out to second to plate Turner and then Corinne Kasper singled to score the Chieftains’ final run.
The Vikings responded with three runs in the bottom of the sixth.
Olivia Jordan singled home a run, while Gentry drove a ball up the middle that was deflected by Dowagiac pitcher Sabrina Ruiz away from Turner, who was cutting behind her from her shortstop position.
“I thought we played pretty good defense,” Niles coach Ryan Frontczak said. “We weren’t on in the circle and walked a couple of batters we shouldn’t have. We just kind of let them have situations there. We have to get better. I thought we hit the ball well. We just kind of played our game today. We got to the next round and that’s what it’s all about.”
VanDeKeere tossed a three-hitter for the Vikings. Niles was led offensively by Jordan, who finished with three hits.
Division 2 Pre-District
Dowagiac 000 002 0 – 2 3 2
Niles 021 203 x – 8 13 1
Molly VanDeKeere (W) and Hannah Porterfield; Sabrina Ruiz (L) and Kourtney Mitchell
2B: Courtney Ankrapp (N)
HR: VanDeKeere (N)