Scoring runs in every inning, Wauseon was able to keep pressure on Defiance enough to earn a 12-7 decision in a Division II softball sectional championship game Friday at Wauseon.
The Indians will play in a district tournament this upcoming week at the University of Northwestern Ohio in Lima.
“It’s my first year, I was a little nervous coming into this game,” said Wauseon coach Mark Schang after advancing. “We played Defiance earlier in the season and beat them 6-4. We went with Macee (Schang) pitching and we hoped to throw them off their game.”
Wauseon was able to take a 3-0 lead after the first two innings thanks to some key two-out hitting. In the bottom of the first, a double by Harlee Floss plated Alisa Shelt. In the second, Payton Albright hit a two-run double in the left-centerfield gap to widen the score to 3-0.
“We’ve been hitting the ball really well,” mentioned the Wauseon coach. “That was the key, the two-out hits. That really kept us going. Everybody was coming up clutch.”
After Defiance trimmed the lead to 3-2 in the top of the third, the Indians were able to answer, and again it came with two outs. This time Juli Spadafore had the big hit, connecting for two runs to add to the Wauseon advantage.
“That was nice,” coach Schang said of answering the Defiance runs. “The girls were hitting the ball well tonight. I’m glad they were hitting because Defiance is a good team.”
Albright started the next inning by hooking a home run inside the foul pole in the left-field corner. Albright was a part of a big three-run fifth. She sandwiched a two-run hit around a Spadafore RBI and a run-scoring groundout by Christina Norman.
Trailing 10-2, Defiance battled back in the top of the sixth. Starting with a home run, the Bulldogs plated four runs to cut the deficit to 10-6 heading into the bottom of the inning.
In the bottom of the inning, Jettie Burget blasted a two-run home run for the final two Indian runs of the game.
“That was huge, we needed that,” coach Schang said of scoring in every inning.
Defiance did get one across in the seventh to make the final 12-7.
Eight players in the Wauseon lineup had a hit. Albright had a pair of doubles and a home run and drove in five runs. Spadafore had a double and a pair of singles and drove in three runs. Seven different players crossed the plate in the win.
Macee Schang went the distance in the circle to get the win. She allowed seven runs – five earned – on eight hits with five walks and 12 strikeouts.
For the first time in a few years, Wauseon heads south to play a district. The Indians will face fourth-seeded Lima Bath Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at UNOH.
“The only teams we’ve seen out of this district are Defiance and Napoleon,” stated the Wauseon coach about the district. “Hopefully we can meet up with Napoleon (in the district final). We really want to get them.”
The day before the sectional final, Wauseon tuned up by scoring a 12-0 win against visiting Stryker.
The Indians got started with a 10-run first inning.
Floss hit a monster home run and a single and drove in three runs. Norman had a double and two singles and also drove in three runs. Shelt and Spadafore added two RBIs each.
Spadafore pitched into the fifth before Shelt came on to get the final two outs in the circle.
Wauseon nabs back-to-back NWOAL titles
Wauseon clinched its second straight Northwest Ohio Athletic League softball title Wednesday, shutting out Swanton on the road 5-0 in a makeup contest.
Swanton was held without a hit by Wauseon pitcher Macee Schang. Going all seven innings, she struck out 17 batters to just three walks.
Alexis Bergman took the loss for Swanton.
Chelsie Raabe paced the Wauseon offense, going 1 for 4 with three runs batted in. Harlee Floss (2 for 4) also drove in a run for the Indians.
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