Swenson, Skartvedt and Harris play HR derby
Hawks pound Rams, stay at top of HOIC
JEWELL — Cortney Harris isn’t thinking about the wins or even the potential for a Heart of Iowa Conference championship. At this point, the South Hamilton senior is focused on just one thing.
After all, that’s what sports are supposed to be all about, right?
“I personally don’t think about (a possible conference title) a lot,” Harris said. “I’d just rather have fun and go out there and play. It’s a good time to be out there.”
It certainly is.
Harris was in a celebratory mood Wednesday night after South Hamilton (11-4, 8-1 HOIC) shelled Greene County, 10-1, to maintain its perch atop the HOIC with five league games remaining.
The Hawks played home run derby and Harris was a willing participant. Her three-run no-doubt shot to left field in the sixth inning was the third of three dingers on a night when the howling winds were blowing out.
“Towards the beginning of the game things didn’t go my way very well, but after a while I just got in a groove and there she went,” Harris said following a 3 for 4 performance that also included a third-inning single, fifth-inning run-producing double and four RBIs. “Once we’re hitting we’re solid and feel unstoppable.”
South Hamilton rattled Rams’ pitchers Emma Hoyle and Jenna Beyers for 13 hits, five of which went for extra bases. It took an inning or two to hit top speed, but once there the Hawks left Greene County (3-10, 2-4 HOIC) choking on their fumes.
“Initially we were slowing our swings down, but once we started attacking the ball is when we got the big hits and home runs,” South Hamilton head coach Harry McMaken said.
Krista Swenson started the long ball party with a solo shot to left field in the second inning to put the Hawks in front to stay. Lily Skartvedt left the yard with a two-run blast in the fifth, part of a four-run frame.
Skartvedt also lined a double into the gap in left-center in the third and finished 3 for 4 at the plate. Emma Lewis, Breanne Diersen, Taylor Volkmann and Leah Jacoby all added one hit.
Not everything went South Hamilton’s way though. Jessi Harms, the team’s junior starting pitcher, suffered a hamstring injury while sliding into second base following a hit in the fifth inning. She laid on the dirt for several minutes before being helped off the field.
“We don’t know the extent of the injury,” McMaken said. “It will be a day-to-day type of thing, we’ll just have to see how it goes.”
Harms collected the win after working five innings of six-hit ball with four strikeouts. Volkmann took over after the injury occurred and struck out four in two innings.
Lead-off slap hitter Megan Carey supplied Greene County with three of its seven singles. Camryn Paup had two and drove in the team’s only run in the third inning.
South Hamilton will take part in the Roland Kiwanis Tournament today and Saturday. The Hawks will open against Perry at 3:30 p.m. this afternoon and will face Mount Vernon this evening. On Saturday the Hawks are scheduled to collide with Colo-NESCO and Boone.
South Hamilton 10, Greene County 1
Wednesday at Jewell
Gr. Cty 001 000 0 — 1 7 5
S. Ham 021 043 x — 10 13 1
Emma Hoyle, Jenna Beyers (5) and Emma Stream. Jessi Harms, Taylor Volkmann (6) and Hailey Diersen, Breanne Diersen (6). W — Harms. L — Hoyle. Multiple hits — GC: Megan Carey (3), Camryn Paup; SH: Cortney Harris (3), Lily Skartvedt (3), Harms. 2B — SH: Harris, Skartvedt. HR — SH: Krista Swenson, Skartvedt, Harris. RBI — GC: Paup; SH: Harris (4), Skartvedt (2), B. Diersen, Swenson, Emma Lewis.