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Southern swing revisited for Lady Warriors softball

By Lenny Sementi

This year’s senior class has dealt with more than a few adversities during their four-year high school athletic career due to the pandemic. They missed out on their freshman year and the spring sports programs dealt with a shortened sophomore campaign. And then softball and baseball’s spring trip south at the start of the season was canceled in both their junior and senior seasons due to weather.  But this past weekend, the softball team made up for lost opportunities by making the trip south for the Benton Round Robin on Saturday. The ladies in black and gold made the most of it, upending the 20-game winner and state-ranked Waltonville Sesser Valier 6-4 in a battle of tourney unbeaten to win it.

Waltonville beat state-ranked Goreville in their first game, while the Warriors ran past the host Rangerettes 15-4. Tuscola erased a 1-run deficit with a 4-run top of the second against Waltonville, then broke up a 4-4 tie with a pair of runs in the fifth to take a 6-4 lead and never looked back. Isabelle Wilcox worked the first 3 frames giving 4 runs on 5 hits and 2 walks. Bayleigh Taylor collected the win in relief, scattering 5 hits and 2 walks out over the final 4 innings not allowing a run.

Addy Ring had a day at the plate with a 2 for 3 outing that included a bunt single, an RBI single, 2 runs scored and 2 stolen bases. She also had 2 big grabs in right field and throw out a would-be run in the fifth on a sac fly to end the threat. Alaina Smith came up big as well, scoring once and driving in 2 on a team-best 3 hits, while Ella Boyer was 2 for 2 in the game with an RBI and a run scored. Wilcox, Makenna Fiscus and Kayleigh Bales all added an RBI single to the box score.

The Warrior started the day with a 15-4 win over the hosts putting crooked numbers on the board in 4 frames, capping it off with a 6-run top of the seventh. Ava Boyer flexed her muscles driving two over a deep centerfield fence. The super soph scored 4-runs while pushing 4 across the plate. Wilcox had an RBI double going 4 for 5 in the game. Ella Boyer doubled as well, notching 4 RBIs in a 3 for 5 effort at the plate. Smith pounded out a pair of hits to go with 2-RBI’s Bales, Thomason, Fiscus and Ring all add singles to the stat sheet. Wilcox took home the win in the circle giving just 2 hits in 4 innings of work and Taylor threw the final 3 frames surrendering 3 hits and a pair of walks.

Two nights earlier, the Warriors wrapped up their Central Illinois Conference schedule with an 11-1 win over Central A&M. Wilcox once more secured the win on the bump, going the distance and allowing 1 run on 2 hits striking out 6. She provided some offense, also going 2 for 4 on the day with a home run and 4 RBIs. A. Boyer drove in 4 RBIs and scored 3 runs of her own in a two-hit outing that included a triple. Emily Czerwonka, Smith, Fiscus and Thomason all donated a pair of hits to the cause, while Ring and Claire Meyer each singled.

They opened the week on Tuesday, May 2, with a lopsided 23-4 victory over St. Theresa. Tuscola crossed the dish 15 times in the first and didn’t slow down, delivering 16 hits in the contest. Wilcox and Taylor each threw 2 innings in the run-rule-shortened contest. The Boyer sisters each hit a home run and were perfect on the night, going a combined 4 for 4 night at the plate, delivering 5 runs scored and 4 RBIs. Thomson didn’t miss a beat either, with a 3 for 3 outing that was a homer away from the cycle.

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