Oskaloosa Takes Third at State, Breaks Record for Wins

The Indians celebrate their 3rd place finish after crushing Charles City 14-1.

by Wade Steinlage

A second-straight state title was not to be, but the Oskaloosa Indian softball team still produced a plethora of memorable moments last week as it closed out its 2017 season with a third-place finish.

Fourth-seeded Oskaloosa (31-13) opened its title defense with a 3-2 (8 innings) win over #5 seed Mount Pleasant Tuesday. The Indians unfortunately were then moved to the consolation side with a 3-1 loss to top-seeded and eventual state champion Winterset Thursday. OHS rebounded well, though, on Friday by crushing #7 seed Charles City 14-1 (6 innings) in the third-place contest.

Oskaloosa 3, Mount Pleasant 2

Meghan Moorman provided the game-winning sacrifice fly in last year’s state title matchup against Carlisle and succeeded in again being the hero in Tuesday’s quarterfinal.

Moorman’s double brought home pinchrunner Emily Richmond with the game-winning run in the bottom of the eighth to send OHS into the semifinal round.

Aubrey Miller opened the eighth with a walk and Taylor Wills moved her to second with a single. Richmond then entered to run for Miller, and after a Maddie Haines’ popout, Moorman sent Richmond in on the two-bagger.

Oskaloosa struck first in the fourth when Ava Vande Wall singled and Miller added a double. Haines walked to load the bases and Moorman hit a sacrifice fly that scored Vande Wall.

Mount Pleasant knotted the game in the fifth, but OHS recaptured the advantage at 2-1 in the sixth when Wills cleared the center field fence with a solo home run.

Unfortunately, the Panthers extended their life by plating a run in the seventh to force extra innings tied at 2-2.

Wills paced the Indians with two hits as the Indians outhit the Panthers 7-6. Miller, Haines, and Josie Bunnell all reached base twice with a hit and walk each. Groet, who struck out the first six batters she faced, finished with 11 strikeouts against two walks.

Winterset 3, Oskaloosa 1

The Indians appeared on their way to getting a shot at a title defense, but the Huskies had other plans and came up with their own late-inning magic.

Moorman carried the excitement from Tuesday’s game-winner into Thursday and put Oskaloosa on top in the second with a double that scored Miller. While it was just one run, the way Groet was pitching (finished with 10 strikeouts and two walks) coupled with OHS’ recent luck in Fort Dodge made the Indian faithful confident it would be enough.

Unfortunately, Winterset had an even better fate it was destined for and took advantage of two Oskaloosa errors to come from behind with a three spot in the sixth inning.

Haines doubled to lead off the seventh, bringing the tying run to the dish. The Indians, who were outhit 4-3, failed to bring anyone around, however, ending its bid to defend the title.

Oskaloosa 14, Charles City 1

With the biggest award no longer attainable, the Indians could have just gone through the motions in the bronze matchup, but instead sent their seniors out with a record-breaking victory over Charles City.

OHS snapped the scoreless tie in the second, then went off in the fourth (five runs) and sixth (eight runs) frames to earn win number 31. The 31 victories are the most in school history.

Oskaloosa tallied a 14-4 edge in base knocks with Bunnell and Vande Wall each managing three, while Miller, Haines, and Moorman all added two apiece. A total of 10 different Indians recorded a hit in the win.

The trio of Bunnell, Haines, and Vande Wall all crossed home plate twice, while Bunnell, Vande Wall, Miller, Haines, Moorman, and Krissy McCombs each drove in two RBIs. Haines drew two walks as well.

Alexis Westercamp put an exclamation point on the win, and the campaign for that matter, as she made her first game appearance since the second week of the year (broken hand). She pinch-ran for Devan Welch in the fourth inning and scored on a hit by Anna Jones.

While definitely not needed, Groet made sure her final high school performance was strong as she struck out nine (one walk).

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Posted by on Jul 23 2017. Filed under Local News, School Activities. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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