Wildcat bats are heating up

The Mount Si High School softball team looked to break out once again last week, as they made up a previously rained-out contest with Liberty. For the second straight game, the bats woke up late, and turned a potentially tough loss into a big, confidence-building win.

Kyleen Sweepe hit a home run and the Wildcats scored four times in the sixth inning, turning a 4-3 deficit into a 7-4 win.

Wildcat coach Larry White credited the bottom two hitters in his lineup.

“Two games in a row, Kelsey Walker and Savannah Maddux got it started for us,” White said. “It rolls our lineup over.”

Walker was hit by a pitch to open the sixth against Liberty’s Bree Bartholomew, then Maddux walked, setting up Sweepe, whose single scored the first two runs. Hits by Megan Stone and Traci Barclay brought in the other two runs in the frame.

Sweepe started it off in the first with her leadoff blast against the Liberty senior pitcher.

“(Bartholomew) was going in on me, then up. Then she just gave me the wrong pitch and I just took it out,” Sweepe said.

Stone’s key hit in the game continued a string of strong performances for the freshman, who is getting rave reviews for her performance so far.

“I just went into (this at-bat) with confidence,” Stone said. “Confidence is the big thing in my head when I’m hitting.”

Stone has built some solid high-level experience with the Xtreme summer club fastpitch team, participating for the last few years.

Mount Si’s game with Mercer Island was postponed last Tuesday, March 18, due to a lack of school bus transportation for the team to the island, a situation which has affected many other Wildcat athletic programs over the past several days. A number of road contests involving most Mount Si spring sports have been postponed or switched to their home field due to a combination of weather and the transportation issues.

The Wildcats returned home to host Bellevue last Thursday, March 20. Mount Si was up 5-0 in the fifth inning, three outs from an official game before the rains came and suspended the contest. It will resume when the two teams meet at Bellevue later this season.

The Wildcats had much better weather for their contest last Friday, March 21, against Auburn. The bats went to work in a big way one more time, in the third inning.

Down 2-0 after the Trojans scored their runs in the second, Mount Si sent 11 hitters to the plate in that fateful third, and scored seven runs on six hits. The Wildcat offense was aided by three Auburn errors, and that onslaught kick-started the scarlet and gray as they rolled to a 9-3 victory.

“We’ve been having some big innings this year,” White said. “We don’t know when it’s coming, but we know that if we can stay close, our bats are going to come alive.”

Catcher Katie Shaw went four for four with two doubles.

“We just wanted to come out with a lot of fire today, after yesterday’s rainout,” Shaw said. “We had a lot of built up energy that we needed to get out, so it was good.”

The third inning opened with five straight Mount Si hits: a single by Sweepe, back to back doubles by Stone and Shaw, and back to back singles by Katie Brett and Melissa Webster. After Danielle Covello reached on an error and Rachel Nyberg popped out for the first out, Danae Englund crushed a pitch for a double which scored Webster and Covello. Savannah Maddux grounded out to first for the second out, then after another Sweepe single, Stone popped out to end the frame, but the damage was done. Mount Si added two more runs in the fifth to make it 9-2, then Auburn scored a run in the seventh off of Nyberg, who came in to relieve Brett on the mound after the senior’s solid six-inning, eight strikeout performance.

Mount Si is home Thursday, March 27, against Newport, believed to be possibly be the team to beat this season in Kingco. First pitch is 4:30 p.m.

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