On the second night of the season, Nodaway Valley softball got in the win column, taking a tight game from previously undefeated Southwest Valley on the road.
The Wolverines bested the Timberwolves 5-4 Thursday, May 25 at Corning. The win was between 10-0 losses to talented teams from Greene County and Wayne, on Tuesday and Friday, respectively.
Against Southwest Valley, the Wolverines led 4-0 early on. The hosts tied the game in the bottom of the sixth at 4-4. It was then that the Nodaway Valley bats went to work, piecing hits together for the win.
Maddie Weston had a lead off bunt single in the seventh. She would later score on a Lindsey Davis single. The Wolverines had five hits in the game.
Junior pitcher Jorja Holliday, who tallied 12 strikeouts, effectively shut the door on the Timberwolves in the home half of the seventh.
“We were up 4-0, were hoping to build on that, and we didn’t. They got two in the fourth and two in the fifth. We started getting sloppy defensively, but we ended up getting a nice bunt down in the top of the seventh and Jorja shut the door on them,” NV co-head coach Brian Eisbach said. “It was obviously a good win. Knowing that game was sandwiched between two really good teams in Greene County and Wayne, I don’t want to say it was a must win, but it was important so the kids could experience it.”
The Wolverines weren’t able to make the defensive plays necessary to win against either of their other opponents on the week. They committed five errors in the opener, facing strong pitching in Ram senior Emma Hoyle. She had 14 strikeouts while tossing a perfect game. Wayne went with sophomore pitcher Izzie Moore, who had 11 strikeouts. Still, the Wolverines committed six errors against Wayne.
“Sooner than later, those kids will be making those plays,” Eisbach said. “It was one of those things where Jorja kept fighting through it, but we couldn’t put the bat on the ball.”
A bright spot was the offense against Wayne, though the score doesn’t show it.
“Against Wayne we had girls putting the bat on the ball, so we had some positives there,” co-head coach Ryan Zenor said. “Against Greene County I’m not sure if we even fouled any off. We just hit it to them [against Wayne] and their pitcher had a no-no against us.”
Nodaway Valley was slated to travel to Martensdale-St. Marys for a game Tuesday before hosting Bedford Thursday and traveling to Lenox Friday.
“Wayne beat Martensdale 2-0, so Martensdale is good. Their pitcher is solid and they’re very well-coached,” Zenor said. “Our defense has to be there and we have to put the ball in play. With our speed, we have to put the ball in play.”