Highland, Nerland lead Lynx blistering of ’Dogs

ALGONA – The bats continued to make a lot of noise for the Webster City softball team here last night, as the Lynx closed out their regular season with a convincing North Central Conference victory.

Kenady Highland went 4-for-4 with a double and two RBIs in the lower half of the order and Cassidy Nerland blasted three hits in four plate appearances to help WCHS thump Algona, 8-1.

At 17-17 overall and 13-5 in the NCC, the Lynx sit all alone in second place in the league behind champion and fourth-ranked (Class 2A) Fort Dodge St. Edmond. Iowa Falls-Alden (20-9, 12-5 in NCC) is a half-game behind WCHS due to the fact that it didn’t make up a game with Humboldt.

WCHS finished with 14 hits off Algona pitcher Sara Steinman and jumped ahead to stay with three runs in the second inning. The Lynx added two runs in the fourth, one in the sixth and two in the seventh.

“The girls are playing well at the end of the season and hopefully we can take this momentum into the postseason,” WCHS head coach Jess Howard said. “Where we placed in the conference is good enough, but we always strive to finish first.”

Nerland left the field feeling robbed, however. She blasted two-out, two-run home run in the fifth inning, but it was waved off when a Lynx runner was called out for leaving first base too early. The eighth grader led off the sixth with a double.

Mikaleh McCoy went 2-for-4 with a double, Catie Boyd added two singles, and Kaylee Schnathorst and Hannah Myers laced one base hit and plated two runs. Allie Flaws chipped in an RBI single.

Algona (10-14, 7-10 NCC) collected just five hits off McCoy, who went the distance in the circle. McCoy struck out five and the Bulldogs’ one run was unearned.

WCHS will open up Class 4A regional play on Thursday against Charles City on the Comets’ home field. The first pitch is set for 7 p.m.

“Every game from here on out we’re going to have to be at our peak both offensively and defensively,” Howard said.