Sheffield uses big 4th inning to roll past Youngsville
An 11-run fourth inning propelled Sheffield to an 18-2 win at cross-county
The Wolverines took advantage of an inexperienced Eagles pitching staff and drew a dozen walks through four innings.
“I’m very happy with the win,” Sheffield coach Mike Grubbs said. “We got a lot of our jitters out last week.”
Those jitters saw Sheffield (1-1) on the other side of an 18-run loss to Johnsonburg, but Tuesday was a different story. The Wolverines first two batters reached and Emily Leichtenberger drove in the first run of the game on a groundout. Youngsville (0-1) pitcher Erin Dunn, who drew her first career start on the mound, induced a strikeout, but a dropped third strike allowed Marissa Grubbs to score from third and stake Sheffield to a 2-0 lead.
“We were able to do some positive things early and build on them,” Grubbs said.
The Eagles answered with a run of their own in the home half. Kamryn Weissinger hit a one-out double, then stole third and came home on an error to cut the lead to 2-1 after one.
Sheffield tacked on another pair in the second. Anna McCracken drew a leadoff walk and Shianne Patterson reached on an error. Tori Childress hit a one-out single to bring in McCracken and Patterson came around on Grubbs’ ground out to give the Wolverines a 4-1 lead.
Grubbs pitched a 1-2-3 second and Sheffield kept the offensive momentum going in the third. Ashley Fredricks and Jerika Dexter drew consecutive walks to start the inning and Mareena Bailey reached on an error to load the bases. McCracken grounded to short, but Fredricks and Dexter both came home on the play. Patterson followed with another RBI groundout to put the Wolverines ahead 7-1.
Weissinger hit a two-out double in the bottom of the inning. Stole third and came home when the throw sailed into left field to cut the lead to 7-2.
Jena Wilson came on in relief to start the top of the fourth, also toeing the varsity rubber for the first time. Sheffield’s paitent approach at the plate paid off as the Wolverines drew seven walks in the inning and collected five hits to score 11 runs and put the game out of reach.
Grubbs pitched a clean bottom half to seal the victory. She allowed just two runs, both unearned, on two hits, walked one and struck out five on the day.
“She was much calmer on the mound today and threw well for us,” coach Grubbs said. “We need that leadership out there. We have a lot of new girls (this year) and they stepped up for us today.”
Childress had a pair of hits and three RBI, Grubbs had three hits and scored three runs, and Leichtenberger and McCracken each drove in a pair for the Wolverines.
Youngsville is scheduled to host Union City Thursday, while Sheffield is set to travel to Clarion-Limestone Friday.
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Childress 4-2-2-3, Grubbs 4-3-3-1, Leichtenberger 3-1-0-2, Fredricks 1-3-0-1, Dexter 1-2-1-2, Bailey 3-2-0-0, McCracken 2-2-1-2, Patterson 3-2-0-1, Marfink 1-0-0-0, Schall 1-1-0-0, Totals 23-18-7-12
Dunn 2-0-0-0, Weissinger 2-2-2-0, Goss 2-0-0-0, Wilson 1-0-0-0, Wilham 1-0-0-0, Upton 2-0-0-0, Dalrymple 1-0-0-0, Carrington 1-0-0-0, White 1-0-0-0, Totals 13-2-2-0
Sheffield 223 11xx – 18
Youngsville 101 0xx – 2
DP-None. 2b-Grubbs (S), Weissinger (Y) 2. SB-Marfink (S), Fredricks (S), Weissinger (Y) 2, Wilson (Y).
IP H R ER BB SO
Grubbs (W, 1-1) 4 2 2 0 1 5
Dunn (L, 0-1) 3 2 7 3 5 2
Wilson 1 5 11 10 7 0