Niles sweeps Bearcats

Published 1:19 pm Wednesday, May 5, 2004

By By DAN WEISS / Niles Daily Star
The Niles varsity softball team rebounded from a pair of losses Monday to take two games from visiting Battle Creek Central in Big 16 Conference action Tuesday afternoon.
The Vikings improved to 8-3 on the year with 9-6 and 8-2 decisions over the Bearcats, who dropped to 8-14.
Senior pitcher Kari Eckstein improved to 4-2 overall with the win in the first game. She struck out 10 batters and walked one. The Bearcats, however, managed 12 hits. The Niles defense was perfect, not committing a single error.
Tasha Lary led the Vikings' hitting attack with a double and a single. Stephanee Schrader also doubled while Ashton Parks, Julie Kater and Eckstein each hit two singles. Lindsay Carey also added a single.
Niles never trailed in the second game as it jumped out to a 4-0 lead after three innings and didn't allow the Bearcats to score until the fifth.
Julie Kater earned the pitching victory to improve to 4-1 on the year.
Kayla Gross and Kate Whittaker led the Vikings at the plate with a triple and two singles apiece. Kater helped herself with three singles while Carey hit two singles. Parks, Schrader and Kylee Mudd each added a single.
Niles hosts Battle Creek Lakeview Thursday afternoon for another Big 16 Conference doubleheader and hosts Coloma Friday afternoon for a non-conference doubleheader.
The Niles junior varsity softball team also swept Battle Creek Central Tuesday night with decisions of 15-0 and 12-9.
Cara Frucci tossed a no-hitter for the Vikings and led the hitting attack with a triple, two doubles and a single.
Annalee Nelson earned the pitching victory for Niles in the second game. Frucci, Jessica Brann, Whitney Payne, Sarah Martin, Kasey Gogley, Nelson, Annica Martin, Amanda Jellyman and Kristen Lamberton each had a hit in the second game.