Times Sports Editor
TERRE HAUTE -- The Terre Haute South Braves are on quite a roll and on Thursday evening, the host team took advantage of some strong pitching and some early Northview miscues to take a 5-0 victory.
The win halted a Northview win streak over the Braves that had extended more than two years and had included five straight wins by the Knights.
The win by the Braves came as a measure of revenge against at Northview squad that had won three games last season by a combined 42-10 margin.
But then again, this is a much different Terre Haute South squad.
The Braves came in with the program's longest winning streak and extended that to 11 with the victory.
While Northview coach Bethany Jones was well aware of the Braves' streak, she also was disappointed in her team's mistakes that contributed to the loss.
"The first three innings we played not to lose again like the Clay City game," Jones said. "We made some errors, didn't backup on plays and missed our relays. It was just a lack of focus. Finally in the fourth inning we stepped it up."
Unfortunately for the Knights, by then, the Braves had built up a 4-0 lead and were in control of the contest.
Credit Braves' pitcher Ashley Ames for keeping the Knights in check. The junior scattered five hits over seven innings and her defense played flawless defense to back her up.
The same couldn't be said for the Knights, who committed three costly errors early in helping the Braves take the lead.
South scored in the first three innings, tallying a single run in the first on an RBI double by Macy Toon that brought in Ciara Hall, who had walked.
In the second inning, a one-out infield single by Kaylee Criss that went off Northview pitcher, Shelby Colson's mitt, was followed by a sacrifice bunt by Taryn Decker. With Criss on second base, the Knights tried to catch her straying off base and an errant throw scooted into centerfield to score Criss.
Already with a 2-0 lead, the Braves added to the cushion in the third inning as Hall reached on a bad hop single past the Knights' Raven Enders at second. Tiffany Fendrick then ripped an RBI double. Pinch-runner, Dana Hedden then came around to score on an error by shortstop Emily Phillips on a grounder.
Meanwhile, Ames was in control in the circle, allowing a leadoff, infield single to Phillips to start the game.
Northview wouldn't put another runner on base until a one-out single by Kirstin Kimball in the fifth inning.
The Knights narrowly missed a sixth inning rally when Ashlee Ball's sharp hit into rightfield turned into an out on a strong throw to first base. Phillips ripped a sharp liner that was gloved at second. With two outs, Enders and Alyssa Conrad each had infield singles, but Ames struckout Colson to end the threat.
"The first three innings we were hitting the ball, just right at people," Jones said. "When we did get something going it was always with two outs.
"We're still young," Jones added. "We just have to teach the girls the mental discipline. We'll got to practice (today) and work on fixing the mistakes tonight. The talent is there, we just have to work on our head game."
The loss drops Northview to 4-2 overall with a Tuesday game at home against conference foe, Brown County. The Braves bump their record to 11-1 overall.
At T.H. South
2B -- THS (Toon, Fendrick).
Next game: Northview hosts Brown County on Tuesday evening at 6 p.m.
|Colson (L, 4-1)||6.0||5||6||0|