John Marshall’s miscue is Indian Creek’s gain
WINTERSVILLE — After watching an early lead evaporate, Indian Creek softball coach Angie Penner told her team a simple line — seven innings.
Her team listened to that message, capitalizing on John Marshall mistakes in the bottom of the seventh inning for a 6-5 walk-off win Thursday evening.
“Our kids have grit,” Penner said. “That’s twice now in key games our girls haven’t quit. It is a credit to the kids. We have been working hard on mental toughness. We kept saying, ‘Seven innings, you never know what can happen in seven innings.’
“John Marshall is tough. (John Marshall head coach) Ed West does an awesome job, and his kids are great athletes. It could have went either way.”
Carley Jo Penner drew a leadoff walk on a full count to start the inning, got to third base on a bunt and a pitch in the dirt, then scampered home on a wild pitch to tie the score. Taylor Scott, who was intentionally walked and got to third on the wild pitch, ended the game when she crossed home plate after Kaydee Kinsey put a ball in play and the Monarchs committed an error.
“We capitalized on their mistakes in the end,” coach Penner said. “I credit my seniors for their senior leadership. We had 11 (play), and all 11 contributed. I am very proud of them. (John Marshall) battled every inning, and our girls did, too.”
The runs were the first for the Redskins (9-2) since the bottom of the first inning when Kacie Vandeborne blasted a grand slam over the fence in center field.
“The grand slam was awesome,” coach Penner said. “Kacie got ahold of that ball and credit to her. Any time you can put pressure on a team early is big.”
Indian Creek left multiple runners on base in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings, including failing to score with two runners in scoring position and nobody out in the sixth.
“We left a lot of people on base and couldn’t get timely hits,” coach Penner said. “That is a credit to their pitcher keeping us off balance. That is something we have to continue to work on — being able to get runs in with people in scoring position.”
The Monarchs (9-7) got on the board in the top of the third inning when Mac Hall singled and scored on Lydia Knutsen’s RBI double. Catcher Joey Mangino then tied the game with one swing of the bat in the top of the fifth, blasting a three-run home run to tie the score at 4-4.
“Joey has been hitting the ball well,” West said. “That was another big hit from her in a big situation to get us back in the game.
“It was tough. It was a well-played game for the most part, but it got a little sloppy at the end.”
John Marshall took its first lead in the sixth when Kameron Skryzneki led off the frame with a single and scored on an RBI single by Knutsen after an Indian Creek pitching change.
Carley Jo Penner started the game and went 5 2/3 innings, striking out three. She was replaced by Kinsey, who got the win in relief going the last 1 1/3 innings.
After giving up the early slam, John Marshall’s Tessa Wise put up five straight zeros before the late mistakes proved costly.
“She settled down and pitched a real good ballgame,” West said. “I’m very proud of her.”
John Marshall travels to Northwood to start a tournament today. Indian Creek hosts East Liverpool in Buckeye 8 Conference action today to kick off an important stretch of games for the Redskins.
“Hopefully, we can get something started,” coach Penner said. “It does not get any easier.”
(Grimm can be reached at email@example.com)
Indian Creek 6, John Marshall 5
J. Marshall 0-0-1 0-3 1 — 5-10-1
Indian Creek 4-0-0 0-0-0 2 — 6-4-1
JOHN MARSHALL (9-7): Wise (LP, 6 1/3IP, 6R, 6ER, 4H, 3K, 10BB) and Mangino.
INDIAN CREEK (9-2): Penner (5 2/3IP, 5R, 5ER, 9H, 3K, 0BB, 1HBP), Kinsey (WP, 1 1/3IP, 0R, 1H, 0K, 0BB) and H. Scott.
TWO OR MORE HITS: John Marshall (Knutsen 2, Blake 2, Skrzyneki 2); Indian Creek none. DOUBLES: John Marshall 1 (Knutsen); Indian Creek none. TRIPLES: none. HOME RUNS: John Marshall 1 (Mangino); Indian Creek 1 (Vandeborne). RBIs: John Marshall 5 (Knutsen 2, Mangino 3); Indian Creek 4 (Vandeborne 4).