April 3, 2016

BY JOHN D. HOMAN
Logan Media Services

CARTERVILLE – The John A. Logan College softball team has hit a bump in the road. After winning 16 of its first 18 games, the Volunteers have now dropped three of their last four, including a doubleheader to league-leading Lake Land Saturday, 9-0 in five innings and 9-4 in seven.

“We had our shots in the second game,” said Logan head coach Angie Jilek. “We hit the ball hard and went into the top of the seventh down just 4-3, but then gave up three more runs. The wind was brutal today, but both teams had to play with it. Our catchers had a particularly tough time tracking the pitches into the glove and our outfielders had difficulty with routine pop flies that turned into a circus event every time.”

In Game 2, Logan was paced offensively by sophomore shortstop Kiley Pelker who homered and singled.

Freshman Katie Sandusky had a pair of singles and two runs scored. Sophomore Kelsey Rogers doubled as did freshman Megan Hampton. Freshman Jordyn Smith and sophomore Logan Bowlby added singles.

Taking the loss for the Vols was sophomore Jennifer Bailey. She worked all seven frames, allowed nine runs (seven earned) on 13 hits. She struck out two and walked three.

The opener was a one-sided match. The Lakers plated two in the first on a two-run homer by Jenna Jones. They went on to add three in the third and four in the fourth as Deidre Ledbetter drilled a three-run shot.

Meanwhile, the Lakers’ hurler, Emily Oestreich, dominated the Vols’ offense. She allowed no runs on three hits in her five innings of work and struck out 12, while walking one and hitting one.

Sandusky had a bunt single. Katrina Whitley doubled and was stranded at third in the third. Lauren Talton beat out an infield single.

Freshman Nicole Short was pitcher of record for Logan. She worked five innings, allowed nine runs on 10 hits, struck out six, and walked three.

“Nicole had a tough time of it and gave up the two home runs, which is uncharacteristic of her,” Jilek said. “It didn’t help that we didn’t hit, or that we made an error on what would have been the third out of the fourth inning and four runs proceeded to score afterward. When you play in this league, you have to make plays defensively and hit the ball if you want to win. We didn’t do a very good job of that today.”

Now 9-3 in the Great Rivers Athletic Conference and 17-5 overall, the Vols travel to Wabash Valley College in Mount Carmel on Monday.