SPLITSVILLE: Hawks strike first, Cubs get even in nightcap

SH will play rest of season without Barkema

Leah Jacoby (left) high-fives South Hamilton assistant coach Dennis Barkema after she laced a two-run single in the sixth inning against Nevada on Wednesday in Jewell. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

JEWELL — The South Hamilton scorecard was a mess, with starters’ names scratched out in favor of reserves Wednesday night at the Mike Penning Athletic Complex.

A lot had changed with the Hawks since they began their suspended game against Nevada way back on May 25. Injuries have been rampant, but they’ve also presented opportunities to new faces.

And some of those replacements came up big.

Tied at 2 when the contest resumed in the top of the sixth inning, South Hamilton jumped on Nevada quickly with the go-ahead run and then tacked on three more in the seventh to prevail, 6-2.

Jessi Harms plated what turned out to be the winning run when she belted a deep sacrifice fly to center field with one out. Marla Grubb tagged up and sprinted home from third to put the Hawks in front for good.

South Hamilton left fielder Brenna Barquist (front) scoops up a base hit on the first hop against Nevada on Wednesday. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

“The girls came out and attacked the ball and they had a lot of confidence,” South Hamilton head coach Harry McMaken said. “It was really nice to start out that way.”

A two-RBI base hit to center off the bat of Leah Jacoby and a run-scoring single by Hailey Diersen in the seventh gave South Hamilton some breathing room.

Katie Johnson took care of the rest inside the circle, as the senior right-handed pitcher got out of the sixth and seventh frames unscathed en route to the win.

“Katie pitched a really good game,” McMaken said.

South Hamilton continued to play without starters Chloe Barkema, Emma Lewis and Lily Skartvedt. Barkema, a multiple-year starter at first base, will miss the remainder of the season with a shoulder injury. McMaken said he’s uncertain if Lewis and Skartvedt, who were injured in a collision last week, will be able to return.

South Hamilton’s Hailey Diersen slides into second with a stolen base as Nevada shortstop Grace Francis (21) checks the runner at third on Wednesday in Jewell. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

Nevada (5-7, 3-5 HOIC) returned the favor in the nightcap, as it plated runs in each of its first three at bats to gain the upper hand. The Cubs went on to prevail, 7-3.

“I was hoping we could continue (from the opener), but they hit the ball fairly well in the first couple of innings,” McMaken said. “We just couldn’t find a way to get that one last out. They would get that critical hit to drive in those runs and that’s to their credit.”

Harms was dealt the loss in Game 2, as she worked into the fourth inning before handing the ball off to Johnson.

South Hamilton (5-7, 3-5 HOIC) pounded out eight hits and scored one run in the fifth inning and two more in the seventh.

Breanne Diersen went 2 for 4 at the plate with two RBIs. Younger sister Hailey belted a double and five other Hawks — Grubb, Jacoby, Krista Swenson, Taylor Ratzke and Kaylee Oskvig — added one single each.

Marla Grubb tags up from third and scores the winning run on a Jessi Harms RBI sacrifice fly in the sixth inning of Game 1 against Nevada on Wednesday in Jewell. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

Grace Francis roped a pair of doubles for Nevada. Ellie Gray and Riley Mailey had one double each.

South Hamilton will take part in the Roland Kiwanis Tournament today and Saturday. The Hawks will face Solon at 3 p.m. today on the north field, followed by a meeting with Perry at 5:30 p.m. on the south field.

Game 1

South Hamilton 6, Nevada 2

S. Ham 100 011 3 — 6 11 2

Nevada 010 010 0 — 2 8 0

Katie Johnson and Breanne Diersen, Hailey Diersen (6). MacKenzie Garrett, Brooklyn Jensen (6) and Katie Sullivan. W — Johnson. L — Garrett. 2B — SH: Lily Skartvedt, Marla Grubb; NEV: Emma Griffin, Sydney Mosinski. Multiple hits — SH: B. Diersen (3), Grubb, Leah Jacoby; NEV: Griffin, Grace Francis. RBI — SH: Jacoby (2), B. Diersen, H. Diersen, Krista Swenson; NEV: Francis, Ellie Gray.

Game 2

Nevada 7, South Hamilton 3

Nevada 113 001 1 — 7 13 1

S. Ham 000 010 2 — 3 8 4

Makayla Spaid and Katie Sullivan. Jessi Harms, Katie Johnson (4) and Hailey Diersen. W — Spaid. L — Harms. 2B — NEV: Grace Francis (2), Ellie Gray, Riley Mailey; SH: H. Diersen. Multiple hits — NEV: Sydney Mosinski (3), Brooklyn Jensen (3), Sullivan, Gray, Francis; SH: Breanne Diersen. RBI — NEV: Gray (2), Francis, Mosinski, Jensen, Mailey; SH: B. Diersen (2).