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It was indeed a busy but successful week of play for the Glenwood City softball team as it won four of its five slated contests.
A week that saw the Hilltoppers play those five games, three of which were on the road, in just a six-day span.
It began with a 10-0 home shut out of conference foe Colfax last Monday, May 3. That called for an encore which the Hilltoppers gladly delivered the following day blanking the visiting cooperative of Webster/Siren by an identical 10-0 count.
In a contest to claim the league lead, Glenwood City came up short in Plum City last Thursday, May 6 as it suffered its first Dunn-St. Croix loss and just its second of the season when it fell 3-1 to Elmwood/Plum City. The tight victory gave the Wolves sole possession of first place.
But like any good team, Glenwood City was able to put the setback in the rear view mirror and look ahead. Behind the masterfully pitching performances of senior Maddie Oehlke and a reignited offensive fire, the Hilltoppers shut out a pair of opponents in Saturday’s Gilman Tournament, blanking Hurley 7-0 and whitewashing the Blue Jays of Athens 10-0.
Glenwood City also started out another full-week of action with a thrilling extra-innings conference win over visiting Durand Monday evening, taking the contest, 9-8, in ten innings. The Hilltoppers, 4-1 in the D-SC and 7-2 overall, will take to the road for two straight beginning last night in Turtle Lake. They will roam to Mondovi to face the Lady Buffaloes on Thursday before returning home to host the Spooner Rails in a non-conference tilt.
The Toppers will then face another tough test next Monday, May 17 when Elk Mound comes to town.
It’s hard to win games when you can’t hit the ball.
Toppers’ senior Maddie Oehlke kept Colfax hitters off balance throughout last Monday’s conference game in Glenwood City. Oehlke allowed just one hit and no walks and struck out ten of the 19 Vikings batters she faced in her six-inning stint on the mound.
The Toppers’ offense backed up their pitching ace’s efforts, collecting eight hits in a 10-0 win in six innings.
Glenwood City jumped to a 3-0 advantage in the bottom of the first when freshman Ryeah Oehlke punched a three-run home run. Sister Maddie Oehlke had lead of the Toppers’ first at bat with a single and Delanie Fayerweather drew a walk setting the stage for Ryeah Oehlke who followed with her fence-clearing shot.
The Toppers added another run in the second frame when sophomore Aubree Logghe drew an inning-opening walk and later scored on an RBI-single from Fayerweather.
It remained a 4-0 Glenwood City advantage until the bottom of the fifth when the hosts plated five more runs thanks to six walks issued by Vikings pitches including four straight to open the inning and a key single by Maddie Oehlke that drove in two of those five runs.
The tenth and final score for the Toppers came the next inning when Colfax pitching again issued four straight walks to bring in the game to an end in the sixth.
Maddie and Ryeah Oehlke, along with Alex Peterson accounted for seven of Glenwood City’s hits. Maddie Oehlke went 3-for-4 at the plate with two RBIs while younger sibling Ryeah finished 2-for-4 with the three RBIs from her homer. Peterson finished 2-for-3. Fayerweather picked up the other hit for GC.
Just 24 hours later, Glenwood City would celebrate another 10-0 victory on their home field when they beat the Webster/Siren cooperative by that score in a Tuesday, May 4 non-conference contest.
The Toppers had a run for each hit led by junior Morgan Johnson who batted 3-for-3 in the game with a double, two singles, and scored twice. Delanie Fayerweather, Maddie Oehlke, and Michaela Blaser had a pair of hits in three at bats. Fayerweather hit a three-run homer in the first and a two-RBI double in the fifth, while Blaser and Maddie Oehlke each had an RBI double. Ryeah Oehlke had the other Toppers’ hit – a lead-off double in the first.
Glenwood City scored four times in their first at bat against Webster/Siren highlighted by Fayerweather’s three-run shot.
The lead grew to 6-0 in the second when Johnson, Blaser, and Maddie Oehlke all doubled with Johnson and Blaser scoring runs.
After adding another score in the third, Glenwood City brought the game to an end with three more in the fifth. Johnson singled to start the inning and Blaser brought her home with a hit. Maddie Oehlke walked and Fayerweather followed with a double that scored both Blaser and Oehlke to complete the 10-0 win.
Maddie Oehlke once again commanded the pitching circle allowing Webster/Siren just one hit in the fourth and two bases on balls while whiffing 11 of the 18 batters she faced.
Despite outhitting the Wolves six to five, Glenwood City just couldn’t get those timely hits when runners where in scoring position.
As a result, the Hilltoppers lost their first conference softball game of the season, falling 3 to 1 to Elmwood/Plum City in Plum City Thursday, May 6.
“They strung a few hits together to get their three runs,” noted Glenwood City head coach Matthew Schutz.
“We failed to execute hits with runners in scoring positions in a couple of innings,” he added.
That was the contest in a nut shell.
The game was scoreless through the first two innings.
The Wolves broke through for all three of their runs in the bottom of the third inning.
A one-out single Ashlin Faber got the offense going for E/PC. Faber was put out on a fielder’s choice that allowed Anna Blanford to reach first. Maggie Glaus and Hannah Baier followed with back-to-back singles that brought Blanford in with the game’s first score. Brooke Schwebach then step to the plate and delivered a double off a Maddie Oehlke pitch that brought both Glaus and Baier to home plate.
That is all the Wolves would need.
In the second, Michaela Blaser singled but was left stranded. Then in the Toppers’ fourth, Kendall Schutz singled and Fayerweather double in consecutive at bats but were unable to score.
The Toppers were held off the scoreboard until the top of the sixth when senior Delanie Fayerweather hit a solo home run with one out but the that was it as the Toppers grounded out and struck out to end the inning. In the seventh, Glenwood City went down in order to end the game.
Fayerweather led the offense with two of its five hits with the home run and double.
Maddie Oehlke suffered the pitching loss after surrendering all three runs on six hits. She struck out eight Wolves batters and walked none.
After their offense sputtered in Plum City a few days prior, the Hilltoppers employed some basics for a jump start in last Saturday’s softball invitational in Gilman.
“We executed some bunt hits and sacrifices to get our offense started and score runs,” Coach Schutz said.
And the strategy paid dividends.
Glenwood City collected 19 hits and 17 runs in winning both contests it played in the Gilman Tourney May 8.
Maddie Oehlke pitched a pair of shut outs, allowing just six total hits – all singles – as the Toppers’ blanked Hurley 7-0 and Athens 10-0. Against the Hurley Northstars (7-2), Oehlke struck out a dozen with no walks and allowed just four hits. She gave up just a pair of hits in the Athens contest, striking out ten.
After a couple scoreless innings, Glenwood City broke on top of Hurley with three in the third as Sydney Grant walk to start the inning, Maddie Oehlke and Kendall Schutz followed with singles. All three scored.
Maddie Oehlke had a one-out base hit in the fifth and scored on sister Ryeah’s RBI single.
Glenwood City tacked on its final three runs in the seventh with four base hits to open the frame. Again, Maddie Oehlke and Schutz singled and Ryeah Oehlke rapped a hit to score both. Ryeah eventually came home with the Toppers’ last run.
The Oehlke sisters each had three hits against the Northstars and Schutz two.
Maddie and Ryeah Oehlke, and Alex Peterson each registered a pair of hits in the Athens game accounting for six of the Toppers’ nine total hits with Fayerweather, Schutz, and Grant each getting one.
Glenwood City scored three runs in the first and four in the second against the Blue Jays and then added three in the fourth to win 10-0 in five.