Wauseon jumped on top of Swanton early, scoring four runs in the first, five in the second and three in the third as the Lady Indians opened Northwest Ohio Athletic League softball play with a 12-0 five-inning whitewashing of the Bulldogs on a snowy Monday afternoon.
“Our girls and just doing what they are supposed to,” Wauseon coach Jen Croninger said after the win. “They are being diligent in their pitch counts with each pitcher that we’ve faced. They’re being smart on the bases and getting us extra bases when we need them. I can’t ask for anything more.”
The Indians did get aggressive on the bases once they got on. A one-out error and walk put two runners on, and they moved around where Christina Norman drove them both in with a single. Norman scored on a hit by Juli Spadafore, and before the inning ended, Spadafore crossed the plate on an error.
“One thing we thought we could do better than last year was be aggressive because we have speed,” Croninger mentioned. “This is something we worked on in the preseason.”
The second inning was the big inning for Wauseon. A single and wild pitch put Chelsie Raabe in position for Payton Albright, who singled in a run. Ally Tefft added a two-run double, plus Norman and Macee Schang drove in runs for a five-run second.
Reagan Spadafore added a two-run hit in the third to break the game open.
Wauseon finished with 11 hits and seven different players scored a run. Norman, Juli Spadafore, Schang and Albright all had two hits each for the Indians.
“The girls pushed themselves for goals this year and one they wanted was to make better at-bats,” added Croninger about getting help from everybody. “That’s one thing we struggled with at the end last year. Rep after rep, they are really taking to it.”
Juli Spadafore was solid in the circle. She held the Bulldogs to one hit and fanned 14.
“Juli is hot right now and we are sticking with her,” the Wauseon coach said of her starting pitcher. “I do have two other (pitchers) that I can bring in that I have full confidence in.”
The Indians would lose their first game of the season Tuesday, falling 7-1 at home to Otsego. Swanton defeated Lake by a 17-7 final.
Wauseon visits Evergreen Thursday in NWOAL play. Swanton visits Liberty Center Thursday.
Reach Randy Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org