DODGE(R) BALL: FDSH small-balls Lynx into submission
WEBSTER CITY – Fort Dodge Senior High head coach Andi Adams was known for her intimidation and power during her all-state playing days at Webster City some 20 years ago.
She can still intimidate anyone and everyone with just a stare, but Adams’ team didn’t need power to dispose of her alma mater last night at Lynx Field.
It was small-ball city.
Fort Dodge recorded five infield hits, laid down eight bunts – five of them sacrifices – and swiped four bases in an 8-1 romp over Webster City.
The constant pressure applied by the Dodgers (2-0) eventually took a toll on the Lynx (0-1), who committed six errors. Three of the miscues came during Fort Dodge’s four-run sixth inning that increased its lead to 7-0 and put the contest out of reach.
“They did a good job of putting pressure on us and being able to execute at the same time,” WCHS head coach Jess Howard said. “They got runners on and were able to utilize their speed from there.”
Meanwhile, Dodger right-handed hurler Mallory Kilian had it on cruise control all night. With a fastball that had many of the Lynx players swinging late, Kilian twirled a two-hitter that featured nine strikeouts against just two walks.
Kilian took a perfect game into the fifth inning; Lynx sophomore Maddie Anderson broke it up with a one-out hot shot between third and short that resulted in a single. Dodger shortstop Lani VanZyl made a nice diving stop and nearly threw Anderson out from her knees.
Kilian registered five strikeouts during the first time through the Lynx order, and Howard isn’t about to use first-game jitters as an excuse for her team’s lack of production at the plate.
“You can put a little bit of it on the first game, but we’ve also been practicing for two weeks,” she said. “We’ve got to come out aggressively right away and we can’t use the first time through the order to catch up to her speed.”
The Lynx lone run came in the bottom of the sixth on an RBI infield single off the bat of Allie Flaws. It brought Hannah Myers – aboard with a walk – racing to the plate.
Myers stole second and third to get in position to score.
Fort Dodge jumped ahead to stay in the first inning on an RBI base knock to center by Taylor Messerly. It scored Kilian, who was hit with a pitch to lead off the contest.
Lexi Astor collected two infield singles for the Dodgers, while Cassie Tjebben added a pair of hits out of the No. 9 slot in the order.
Fort Dodge finished with seven hits off WCHS senior ace Kaitlyn Biere. The right-hander allowed five earned runs; she fanned eight, walked two and hit two.
The Lynx will search for their first win on Saturday when they take part in a tournament at Ogden.
Notebook: WCHS senior third baseman Tiffany Constable had a painful start to her season. She was hit in the right forearm with a Kilian offering in the second inning and was forced to exit the diamond. Howard said she’ll have the arm checked by doctors, but she should be available for the tournament on Saturday.