Offense is the key in victories
Published 7:18 am Thursday, April 20, 2006
By By ERIKA PICKLES / Niles Daily Star
BUCHANAN - They say defense wins ball games, but that wasn't completely the truth Wednesday evening.
If it wasn't for a strong offensive performance, the Niles softball team would have been in big trouble.
The Lady Vikes met with Buchanan on the softball field for a pair of non-conference games, with the ending victories landing in the hands of the Vikes.
Niles, now 5-2, took a 9-5 win in the first game and a 9-3 win in the nightcap against the Bucks, who now stand at 6-3 overall.
In the first game, the teams were tied at two after the first inning of play. However, the Lady Vikes scored four runs in the second to take the lead for good.
Nicole Ignowski provided two big hits that allowed four runs to come across the plate in the first two innings.
Niles went on to score one run in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings, while the Bucks scored one run in the second, third and fifth innings.
Other top hitters in the first game for the Vikes were Kayla Gross, who had two hits and two RBIs, Stephanee Schrader with two hits and Nellie Coquillard with two singles.
For Buchanan, Jayme O'Bryant and Holly Lucas both had a single and a double.
Jenna Ignowski was the winning pitcher for Niles, throwing nine strike outs and allowing just two walks. Ashley Pointer suffered the loss.
In the second game, the Bucks only trailed by one run, 3-2, heading into the fifth inning, but that's when the bats came alive again for Niles.
The Vikes were able to score two runs in the fifth and four in the sixth to put the game out of reach.
A home run by Jenna Ignowski, a triple by Schrader and hits from Gross and Ignowski contributed to the lead.
The Bucks were only able to score one last run in the bottom of the seventh.
Coquillard ended the second game with three singles, Julie Kater had a double and three singles, Schrader had two singles along with her triple, Nicole Ignowski had two singles, Karly Kennedy had a double and a single and Cricket Fisher added a double.
For Buchanan, Emily Ross had a triple and a single, Jill Westbrook had a double and a single, O'Bryant had two doubles and Chenai Marker added a double.
In the circle, Julie Kater pitched her first game of the season and picked up the win for the Vikes. Jenna Ignowski came in for the save in the final three innings.
Freshman O'Bryant also made her pitching debut for Buchanan, but suffered the loss.
The Lady Vikes have no time to rest as they will hit the road this afternoon to face Edwardsburg. Game time is set for 4 p.m.
The Bucks will travel to Watervliet on Friday night for a pair of non-conference games set to begin at 4 p.m.
Niles 240 111 0 - 9 11 4
Buchanan 211 010 0 - 5 8 7
Jenna Ignowski (WP, 4-2) Ashley Pointer (LP, 6-2)
2B: Nicole Ignowski (N), Kayla Gross (N), Jayme O'Bryant (B), Ashley Pointer (B), Holly Lucas (B)
Niles 012 024 0 - 9 14 2
Buchanan 200 000 1 - 3 7 5
Julie Kater (WP, 1-0), Jenna Ignowski (5), Jayme O'Bryant (LP, 0-1)
2B: Julie Kater (N), Karly Kennedy (N), Cricket Fisher (N), Jayme O'Bryant 2 (B), Chenai Marker (B)
3B: Stephanee Schrader (N), Emily Ross (B)
HR: Jenna Ignowski (N)