’Jets Bite Back: NEH offense ignites, avenges weekend loss to CAL
WILLIAMS – Who knew that spending Saturday at her cousin’s wedding would have such a positive effect on Molly Greenfield’s pitching?
While the rest of her Northeast Hamilton teammates were suffering a 7-3 loss to CAL at the Trojet Invite over the weekend, Greenfield was celebrating with her family. And when she returned to the diamond yesterday she was ready to help them settle the score.
“Over the weekend it helped because I needed to relax just because we play game after game after game,” Greenfield, a senior right-hander, said after tossing a one-hit, four-strikeout shutout gem in a 10-0, 6-inning rout of CAL in an Iowa Star Conference clash yesterday. “It let me settle down a little bit and got me loose again.”
Greenfield was in command of all of her pitches, and the Trojet bats were energized as well. They knocked around Cadet hurler Emily Quinones for 10 hits and scored in every inning but one to avenge the previous loss. They also took advantage of five CAL errors to plate five unearned runs.
Jenn Willems and Jennifer Jeffers both went 2-for-3 with two RBIs at the dish and they combined to score four runs. Greenfield launched an RBI double as well.
“I told (the players) coming into the game that they needed to come with a vengeance and they really did,” NEH head coach Natalie Ostheimer said after her club improved to 3-9 overall, 2-2 in the ISC. “I was so impressed with our bats … I told them to wait and drive and they did that.”
The offensive explosion made Greenfield’s job that much easier. A second-inning bloop single to shallow right field by Stephine Thielen was all that stood between her and a no-hitter – a fact Greenfield learned after the game was over.
“Really? One hit? Dang it,” she said. “It was good though. Close games freak me out because if I do one thing (wrong) it ruins everything, but games like this get me going.”
Greenfield sat down eight straight batters during one stretch in the middle innings and CAL (1-9, 0-5 ISC) never pushed a runner past first base.
“Molly threw great,” Ostheimer said. “She had a well-rested weekend and she was fired up and ready to go when she got here.”
NEH scored the only run it would need in the first on a fielder’s choice RBI grounder by Willems.
The Trojets began to time Quinones in the third and the result was four hits and four runs. Greenfield drove in a run on a sacrifice fly to left, Jeffers and Lillian Chamness smacked back-to-back RBI singles to the left side and Jaidyn Timm plated the game’s fifth run on another sac fly.
Four more hits came in the fourth to help NEH push its cushion to 8-0. Andi Anderson opened the frame with a bunt single; two batters later Willems smoked a base knock to center, and they both scored on back-to-back gappers by Greenfield and Jeffers that resulted in doubles.
Willems added another RBI on a line-drive single in the fifth, and the game ended on an RBI ground-out by Leah Meyer with one out in the sixth.
Meyer also had an infield single.
“Our goal was to stay back (at the plate) and I feel like we did that because we got some good hits,” Greenfield, who finished 1-for-3 with two RBIs, said. “This builds our confidence a lot.”