E-P's kids are alright as Panthers take nine-inning softball opener


Share
Posted Online: March 28, 2013, 9:14 pm
Comment on this story | Print this story | Email this story
By Terry Duckett, tduckett@qconline.com
ERIE — With a roster loaded with up-and-coming young talent, the signs point to a bright future for the Erie-Prophetstown softball program.

However, in their long-awaited season opener against Annawan-Wethersfield on Thursday afternoon, the Panthers showed that perhaps the future is now as two of their youngsters came up big in a 10-9, nine-inning victory at Miller Memorial Field.

First, freshman center fielder Stephanie Thulen capped a 3-for-3, three-RBI batting debut by singling in the tying run in the bottom of the seventh inning after the Titans had rallied for a 9-8 lead on a three-run triple by their own frosh, third baseman Kailynn Osborne.

Next, Thulen came up big defensively when A-W loaded the bases with nobody out in the top of the ninth. Osborne flew out to Thulen, who then threw a perfect strike to E-P catcher Kaeli Kovarik to catch a sliding Kaila Dunfee at the plate. Panther sophomore pitcher Savannah Mettler then got Titan slugger Celina VanHyfte to ground out and end the threat.

"I could feel that it was a good throw, and I knew I had to get (Dunfee) out," said Thulen. "That was a big turning point in the game. When one person does something good, that makes the whole team feel good, and I was glad I could do my part."

In the bottom of the ninth, it was Mettler's turn to do her part. After Kovarik led off the inning by singling off A-W junior ace Megan Foes and took second on Clare Kramer's sacrifice bunt, Mettler dropped a bloop single into shallow right field to give coach Bob Phelps the win in his E-P debut.

"She helped me a lot with that play, and it made me have high expectations coming up," Mettler said of Thulen's key double play. "I went up there thinking that I had to get on and not let anything by me. I thought it'd be caught when I hit it."

Mettler finished with two hits, as did Kramer, and also drove in two runs to counter two-hit outings by Annawan-Wethersfield's Osborne, Celina VanHyfte, Foes and Dunfee. Titan freshman shortstop Morgan VanHyfte was 3-for-5 in her prep debut.

"When you score nine runs, you should win," said A-W coach Jeremy Trill. "That's a lot of runs not to win. We had plenty of offense but not enough defense. That's something I'm confident will come around."


















 



Local events heading








  Today is Wednesday, July 30, the 211th day of 2014. There are 154 days left in the year.
1864 -- 150 years ago: After Sept. 1, every small box of matches will be required to have a 3 cent duty Lincoln stamp on it, and every large box will be one cent for every 100 matches.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Rock Island residents had contributed a total of $1,293 to the American Red Cross for the Johnstown flood relief fund.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Capt. Clark Means, new darkhorse twirler for the ARGUS staff, was in great form in his initial contest as a mound laborer. The result was that THE ARGUS trimmed the Union 6-5.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Hunter and Humprey Moody, young Decatur, Ill, brothers, lack only a few hours of establishing a new world light plane endurance record.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Gates of the 110th annual Mercer County Fair swing open tonight at Aledo for a full week of day and night activity. More that $36,000 will be paid in premiums and race purses.
1989 -- 25 years ago: The baseball field carved out of the cornfield near Dyersville, Iowa, continues to keep dreams alive for hundreds of visitors. Tourists from 26 state and France have visited Dan Lansing's farm to see the baseball diamond seen in the hit movie "Field of Dreams."






(More History)