Renee Lovett withstood gusty winds to put forth a strong pitching performance Tuesday, as the Wapakoneta Redskins senior tossed a one-hit shutout against the Sidney Yellow Jackets.
The Redskins came away with a 7-0 victory Tuesday in their home opener, a non-league varsity softball contest at Wapakoneta High School.
Lovett walked one and struck out seven. After walking the leadoff batter in the third inning, she retired 14 of the 15 hitters she faced. Lovett has now allowed just one earned run in 12 innings pitched this season.
“I always thought Renee would be ready,” Redskins varsity coach Bill Sammons said. “She is a softball player. The girls will follow her lead. She’s leading hard. She’s doing well.
“One thing about Renee is she is very humble, to where. I’ll call a pitch and she won’t shake me off. She does what I tell her to do. That’s a sign of a great team player. That’s what she is. She leads not only as a pitcher but at the plate, too.”
Lovett added two hits and one run scored from her leadoff spot in the lineup.
Lovett’s outing in the circle was helped by freshman Megan Fisher, who notched two singles, reached base three total times and registered three of Wapak’s four RBIs.
“Megan Fisher did a real nice job,” Sammons said. “She is a competitor. That’s what we like,
people who compete. It was nice to see that. She’s filling the first base role, too. Hopefully, she continues to play well.”
Wapak scored two runs in the first and third innings and added three more in the seventh.
Alexis Schwartz had an RBI triple in the third.
Morgan Dirr, Alisha Dirr and Bridgette Weaks each had one single for the Redskins.
All nine batters in Wapak’s starting lineup reached base in Tuesday’s game.
The young team stranded 10 runners, however, which did not fare well with Sammons.
“It was a little frustrating,” the coach said. “We left a lot of runners on base. I’d like to get more back-to-back hits.
Sammons did see signs of execution in the batting order.
“One thing I was pleased with is we executed,” he said. “I called bunts and we got those down. We got runners across and had mistakes baserunning. You’ll have that at the beginning of the year. We have a lot of young players and there’ll be a bit of a learning curve.”
Wapak is now 2-0 after Tuesday’s win.
The Redskins will resume their season Thursday with a non-league game against Marion Local in Maria Stein.