Spring Lake opened Thursday’s key Lakes Eight Conference softball doubleheader at Grant with a disappointing 10-1 loss to the Tigers.
Thanks to freshman Desi Parker, they bounced back in Game 2 just fine.
Parker surrendered three hits, including a pair of triples, in the opening inning, then retired the next 20 batters in a row as the Lakers took Game 2, 4-2.
“This was her best all-around game, and that’s saying a lot as she’s 7-1 on the season,” Lakers’ coach Bill Core said. “Her change of speeds was good and her location was good. She was getting ahead in the counts.”
Ashley Keena had an RBI base hit, followed by a two-run double by Parker, as the Lakers scored three runs in the fourth inning to take control of the game.
Emily Blahnik and Katie Mumby each had two hits for the Lakers.
Game 1 was a disappointing outing for Spring Lake, which committed six errors in a 10-1 loss. Ashley Keena and Kelsee Zuidema each had two hits. Keena scored the Lakers’ lone run on an RBI triple by Zuidema.
“I was disappointed in our overall play in that game,” Core said.
The split drops Spring Lake to 7-3 in league games and 11-6 overall. Grant is now 6-2 in conference play with four games remaining.
“We’ll have to see how it’s all going to play out,” said Core, whose team will host Zeeland West tonight.
SLUGFEST BETWEEN TROJANS, WILDCATS
Montague and Fruitport played in an old-fashioned slugfest on the softball diamond on Thursday, with the visiting Trojans turning in the last burst of offensive firepower in their 14-9 victory in nine innings.
“Montague is a very good hitting team. They had 19 hits, but we had 22,” said Fruitport coach Bob Dorman.
Fruitport was rolling through five innings, as it held a comfortable 8-1 lead, but the Wildcats caught fire in the late innings and tied the contest at 9-9 by scoring five runs in the bottom of the seventh off Trojans’ starting pitcher Morgan Glover.
The senior held Montague in check the rest of the way, however, as the hosts went scoreless in both the eighth and ninth innings.
The Trojans piled on five runs in the ninth to put them on top for good. They had several key performances at the plate, including three-hit games from Lindsey Helsen, Amanda Benson, Alexis Black, and Kelsie Aliviar.
Helsen had an inside-the-park home run, Alviar totaled two RBIs, and Allison Beckwith’s 2-for-4 performance included two triples for the Trojans.
“We only had one person who didn’t have a multi-hit game and that was Morgan, who is probably our best hitter and taught all these girls how to hit,” Dorman said.
Fruitport (4-6 overall) hosts Muskegon Catholic Central today, and then will battle at its home invitational on Saturday, beginning at 9 a.m.
WEST OTTAWA TOPS GH
Grand Haven’s varsity softball team continued to struggle against O-K Red Conference competition on Thursday, with West Ottawa scoring a 9-2 victory at Grand Haven High School.
Grand Haven (4-11 overall) managed just three hits against the Panthers, with Madison Barshaw leading the way with two singles. Cheyenne Ray and Jordan Buckingham also tallied singles.
RJ Morrow had a solid pitching performance as she struck out three and walked just two in six innings of work, but Grand Haven’s defense committed seven errors during the game. Kaylee Hartwell pitched an inning of relief for the Bucs.
COVENANT BLASTS WMC
In a River Valley Conference matchup, Western Michigan Christian ran into the strong bats and strong pitching of the Covenant Christian Defenders, losing 18-0 in a game stopped after four innings.
Covenant pitcher Hannah Nagelkerke threw a perfect game. Anna Sweetman pitched all four innings for WMC, striking out four.
"We played a good team today in Covenant. I was proud of how our girls hung in there with them for the first three innings,” WMC coach Jeff Nestell said. “Each game we show improvement over the last game. Our 'win' today was playing two innings of error-free ball. Our goals for the remainder of the season are to improve our fielding and to get our bats going."