THE BOONE BASH
BOONE – The strike zone was small and the room for error was even smaller – not exactly the combination Webster City pitcher Erin Bahrenfuss was looking for here Tuesday evening.
Before the storm clouds rolled in and erased the final inning from the non-conference contest, the Boone bats inflicted plenty of punishment in a 13-5, 6-inning victory over Webster City.
The Toreadors (11-3) didn’t just make contact. There weren’t a lot of bloop base hits and infield bunts. Instead, they scalded the ball, up and down the lineup, and piled up seven doubles, one home run and 14 hits in all. They added three more to their tally in the bottom of the sixth and had the bases loaded with nobody out when Mother Nature took mercy on the Lynx.
“They have a very good lineup all the way through and there wasn’t one you could avoid,” WCHS head coach Jess Howard said. “If we meet up with them again we have to hit our spots, move the ball and make them get off balance when they’re swinging.”
Bahrenfuss was on the hook for the Boone eruption, as she surrendered nine earned runs. But the oftentimes inconsistent and always small strike zone didn’t do her any favors.
“A lot of times you have to adjust to different umpires, but to not know where to go with (the pitches) is difficult,” Howard said. “But it’s up to us to adjust to that.”
Boone’s Nos. 2-4 hitters – Breanna Hunter, Lauren Calkins and Laura Anderson – combined to go 9 for 12 with five doubles, a dinger and 10 runs batted in.
Hunter, the Toreadors’ pitcher, helped her own cause plenty with a three-run no-doubt bomb to left in the second inning and a three-run double into the gap in left-center in the fifth. Her fourth-inning double bounced off the top of the fence in center and she was getting ready to step back into the batter’s box in the sixth when the game was called.
Anderson, Hunter’s battery mate behind the plate, went 4 for 4 with two doubles and three RBI.
Boone jumped out to a 7-0 lead after two innings, but WCHS (6-9) rallied with three runs in the third and two in the fourth to jump back into contention. The Lynx fared well against the hard-throwing Hunter and accumulated eight hits.
“We had some solid hits and fast swings, and it was good to see that from the girls,” Howard said. “(Hunter) has got movement, she’s got a change-up, but the girls were patient and kept their hands back. They used the small strike zone to their advantage also.”
Lynx clean-up hitter Cassidy Nerland finished 2 for 3 with a second-inning double and a fourth-inning two-run line-drive base hit to left that brought Atlanta Hopp and Allie Flaws to the dish. The hard shot got by Toreadors’ outfielder Stefanie Davis and that allowed Taylor McKinney to score all the way from first.
Cynthia Whitehill roped a lead-off single to left in the fourth and courtesy runner Zoey Woodle eventually came around to score. Flaws, aboard with her second single of the game, raced home as well on a double steal that also took Kali Dawson, on with an infield single, to second.
Taylor Schnathorst and Courtney Lampman added singles for the Lynx.
Hunter finished with six strikeouts, while Bahrenfuss fanned one.
Following last night’s North Central Conference contest at Clarion-Goldfield-Dows, WCHS will return to Lynx Field this evening to face reigning state champion and third-ranked (Class 3A) Solon. The Spartans are making a pitstop on their long trek to north central Iowa to compete in the Fort Dodge Invitational over the weekend. WCHS will also be in the Fort Dodge field.