Lakers' softball cruises to pre-district win

Last year, Spring Lake's varsity softball team entered Division 2 district play labeled as a favorite to win the district tournament, only to be upset by rival Fruitport. This year, the Lakers come in under the radar, and they're fine with that role. Tuesday, Spring Lake started its quest for a district championship with a dominating 11-1 win over Lakes Eight Conference for Grant. Senior pitcher Sam Weerstra was nearly unhittable, allowing just a single base hit, while the Lakers' lineup hit the ball well from top to bottom.
Matt DeYoung
Jun 1, 2011


“At first, I didn’t know what was going to go on with this team because we had a lot of young players, but I really believe we can do it,” said Lakers’ senior Rachael Adams, who bats in the No. 2 spot and came into Tuesday’s game batting over .500 on the season. “We’re having fun. That’s what we say before every game. When we have fun, we play well.”

The Lakers were certainly having fun on Tuesday, and it started with leadoff batter Evie Lorimer, who went 1-for-2 and also walked twice. She finished with four stolen bases and three runs scored. She led off the game with a walk, stole second and third, and scored on Adams’ deep fly ball. Micanna Pelkey reached on a single and Cassie Appel was hit by a pitch. Jessica Lewakowski also drew a walk, then Ashley Keena belted a two-run single. Shelbie Robinson followed with another two-run base hit and the Lakers were off-and-running with a 6-run lead.

That was all the help Weerstra would need. The senior threw a one-hitter, striking out four and not walking a single batter. Two Grant hitters reached on errors.

“Sam did a good job,” Lakers’ coach Bill Core said. “At Grand Haven on Friday, she struggled with her control. Today, she threw just 56 pitches, and she gave up just one hit.

“I’m real happy to see Sam pitch well. It’s really important for her to get ahead in the count, and she did that today.”

The Lakers added two more runs in the bottom of the second inning as Lorimer tripled and scored on a wild pitch. Pelkey then singled, stole second and scored on a fielder’s choice.

In the sixth, the Lakers finished off the game with four runs as Skylar Bench, Lorimer, Pelkey and Adams each came around to score.
Core said the top of his lineup has been fantastic all year. The lightning-quick Lorimer now has 49 runs scored to go with 48 stolen bases in 49 attempts. Pelkey has scored 34 runs and Adams 36.

“Lorimer and Pelkey each scored three runs today and Adams came in hitting over .400, so with those three girls batting 1-2-3 in the top of our order, it’s been pretty special all year.”

The Lakers move on to face Whitehall in Saturday’s district semifinals at 10 a.m. Orchard View will meet Fruitport — a 7-3 winner over Coopersville on Tuesday — in Saturday’s noon semifinal. Spring Lake split a doubleheader with Whitehall two weeks ago.

“We did not throw Sam in those two games,” Core said. “We’re two pretty evenly-matched teams. It should be a good game.”


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