Girls Varsity Softball
Game Summaries & Headlines.
SHG ends Alton’s season, 12-2
Louie Korac For The Telegraph
Published 7:40 pm, Thursday, May 24, 2018
GODFREY — An inability to get the season-long reliable bats going and a large crooked inning allowed did in the Alton Redbirds.
Alton’s bats were cooled off by Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin pitcher Abigail Antonacci, and the Cyclones touched Alton pitcher Abby Scyoc for six second-inning runs before SHG walked it off with four unearned runs in the bottom of the sixth of a 12-2 victory on Thursday in the Alton Class 4A Regional at AHS.
The Cyclones (23-10) advance to face Edwardsville (20-3) on Saturday at 11 a.m. for the regional championship. Alton finished at 17-17.
The Redbirds were limited to four hits in the game, and the Cyclones sent 11 batters to the plate against Scyoc in the second inning to grab a 7-1 lead and never look back.
“It probably was one of the better games of the year,” SHG coach Al Yoho said. “… We’ve lost to some pretty good teams, but we hit real well, and pitching is starting to come around a little bit. We kind of struggled a little bit, but pitching’s starting to get better.”
Alton coach Dan Carter went with the sophomore Scyoc, who would only last two innings and allow seven earned runs on six hits with two walks, one strikeout and a hit batsman.
“We’ve got two pitchers and it was which is going to be better that night,” Carter said. “They’re very complimentary of each other, and Abby Scyoc’s worked her tail off to be the No. 1. We felt like we owed it to her to give her that start. She went out there, she had a great first inning and it kind of blew up on her there in the second inning.”
The Cyclones scored a run in the bottom of the first on a fielder’s choice ground ball before Scyoc helped her own cause with a soft single through the middle of the infield to score Lynna Fischer, who drove in a run in the third, to tie the game 1-1.
But the Cyclones would go up for good, and four of those runs came after two outs, with Claire Dodson providing the big blow with a two-run single to right center making it 5-1, followed by a RBI double by Renee Abernathy and RBI single off the bat of Katie Weller for a 7-1 Cyclone lead.
“We did pretty decent that inning,” Yoho said. “We hit the ball well through the whole order. When you play Alton, they’re probably in one of the best conferences in the state, so you can’t take anything for granted. Any time you can score, get your runs early.”
Meanwhile, Antonacci, who allowed single runs in the second and third, settled in to blank the Alton lineup. She allowed two earned runs on four hits with three walks and five strikeouts and worked around a pair of fielding errors as the Redbirds stranded seven runners in the game.
“She doesn’t mess around,” Yoho said of his senior pitcher. “She just gets the ball and goes. A lot of these pitchers, you get 20 seconds in between pitches, and that seems like an eternity. She just gets the ball and goes. She’ll get it and go and is a phenomenal competitor.”
The Redbirds came into the game averaging 8.6 runs per game but were kept in check and when they got the base runners, they just couldn’t string together the big inning off Antonacci and it simply never clicked.
“It didn’t. I give them credit,” Carter said. “Their pitcher kept us off balance there a little bit. She moved the ball in and out and up and down and it didn’t help that we haven’t played a game in a week. But that’s the way it is. That’s the nature of the beast. We just didn’t give ourselves an opportunity to win.”
Carter went with freshman Alyson Haegele in the third and the lefty handled the SHG lineup well until she ran into trouble in the sixth when the Cyclones plated four runs with the help of two errors. The final run came on a wild pitch on an 0-2 count.
Haegele went 3 2/3 innings and gave eight hits and five runs (one earned) with no walks and one strikeout.
“We made a switch,” Carter said. “I hate to go out there in the middle of an inning if you don’t have to. I let her work around that a little bit.
“Bottom line is we didn’t make plays for Alyson the last inning. Should have been out of the inning clearly and had another chance to hit. It’s 8-2 and we still had an uphill climb there, but you give yourself a chance when you have the top of the order coming up and we didn’t ourselves that chance.”
The loss marked the end of the prep careers for seniors Alexis Fisher, Miranda Hudson and Rachel McCoy.
SPRINGFIELD SACRED HEART-GRIFFIN 12, ALTON 2
Alton 011 000 — 2 4 2
SHG 160 104 — 12 14 2
Alton (17-17) — Hudson 1-3, Betz 2-3, Fischer 0-1 RBI, Scyoc 1-3 RBI. LP-Scyoc IP-2 H-6 R-7 ER-7 BB-2 K-1.
Sacred Heart-Griffin (23-10) — Schweska 1-4 RBI, Dodson 2-4 RBI-2, Abernathy 1-4 3B RBI-2, Weller 3-4 2B RBI-2, Morrow 2-3 RBI-2, Antonacci 3-4 2B-2, Robertson 2-3 RBI, Sauer 0-2 RBI. WP-Antonacci IP-6 H-4 R-2 ER-2 BB-3 K-5.