Schoolcraft soars into state semifinals
HOLLAND – How high can a Schoolcraft Eagles softball team fly?
Behind two big innings at the plate, a solid defensive performance and great pitching from Mikayla Meade and Adriene Rosey, the Lady Eagles were able to fly to a convincing 14-6 win over Grandville Calvin Christian Tuesday in a Division 3 state quarterfinal played at Wolters Stadium at Hope College.
Schoolcraft (31-4) advances to Friday’s 3 p.m. state semifinal game against Dundee, an 8-3 winner over Riverview Gabriel Richard, at Michigan State University’s Secchia Stadium.
The other semifinal contest pits Millington, an 11-0 winner over Marine City, against Stadish Sterling Central, which edged Negaunee 2-1, at 5:30 p.m.
The state championship will be played on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. back at Secchia.
“These girls are amazing and work very hard. We are always positive and having fun out on the diamond. Our defense was a little shaky today, but we did what we do and that is hit the ball and we were able to put up 14 runs,” said Schoolcraft head coach Shane Barry.
“All year we’ve been a power hitting team that would usually hit a couple home runs each game. We finally got out of that and became a team that swings for line drives and base hits to scratch out enough runs.”
Calvin Christian, which ends its season at 31-8, went in front 1-0 after the top of the first.
A ground ball hit by the Lady Squires’ Lauren VanHouten drove in teammate Vanessa Krombeen who doubled to lead off the inning.
Schoolcraft quickly tied the game up with a single run in the bottom of the first.
The Lady Eagles’ Danielle Blyly walked, stole second and third before scoring on an RBI single by junior shortstop Katie Parker.
Calvin Christian regained the led 2-1 with a run in the top of the third.
Lauren Buckley’s RBI single scored Squires’ teammate Brooklyn Verbeek who had doubled earlier in the frame.
Schoolcraft added a single run in the third to even the contest up at 2-2.
Paige Reid doubled and scored on a single by the Lady Eagles’ Allie Goldschmeding.
Schoolcraft exploded for six more runs in the bottom of the third for a 9-2 advantage.
Highlighting the big inning for Schoolcraft was Parker with an RBI single, sophomore Jordan Watts with a two-run double, Meade had an RBI single and freshman second baseman Sophie Ridge added a two-run single.
Schoolcraft piled up four more runs in the fourth boosting its lead to 13-2.
Parker had a monstrous two-run homer over the left-field fence and Meade had a two-run double to highlight the Lady Eagles’ inning.
“I really just think that once we got through the lineup once we were just able to get our timing down really well. We try to stay cool and calm at the plate because we knew we were going to battle back in this game,” Parker said.
Please see Wednesday's print or e-edition for full article.