Hays scored nine of their 14 runs in the first two innings with a dominate performance from all three phases in a 14-3 victory over the Westlake Chaparrals Tuesday night.
“Its a good win for us, huge win,” said Hays head coach Lisa Cone. “Especially with our cross town rival game coming up Friday against Lehman. So hopefully we just keep our bats going.”
The Lady Rebels came out slugging in the first inning scoring three runs. Junior Bri Rodriguez got it started by reaching second base on a throwing error by the Chaparral defense, which gave Kari Louk the opportunity to cross home plate to give Hays the early lead. The Lady Rebel bats turned it up another notch in the second inning, tallying six total runs, including a two-run home run over the left field wall by senior Illyanna Cisneros.
“Yesterday at practice we did a lot of hitting,” Cone mentioned. “You know the last few games we haven’t had our hits that we are used to having. Our bats haven’t been as lively as we are used to. So we just really focused on letting the ball get deep, because we were early on a lot of pitches and hitting the ball right to somebody.”
The runs kept coming for the Lady Rebels as they scored five more across the third and fourth innings. Outside of hitting, Hays did a superb job running the bases and capitalizing on Westlake’s mistakes. Hays as a team had five total stolen bases on the night, including two from Louk herself. Louk used her speed agains’t the Chapparals, baiting them to make throws that resulted in errors. Louk actually scored an inside the park home run off a throwing error early in the second inning, sparking the Lady Rebels big inning.
“We want to be aggressive and not run into outs,” said Cone. “So we did a better job on the bases as far as confusing the defense.”
The winning pitcher on the night for Hays was junior Maxine Valdez. Valdez recorded nine strikeouts, while only giving up three runs and two walks through four innings pitched. Other than a rough third inning where she gave up all three runs, Valdez controlled the strike zone and had Westlake’s batters second guessing themselves.
So whats next for the Lady Rebels? A home game versus cross town rival Lehman on Friday night, March 9 at 7:00 p.m.
“I know that they’ve been playing great softball so far, so we need to anticipate it being a good game.” Cone said about the upcoming game with Lehman. “We are going to prepare for them to throw everything they can at us. They’ve come to scout, so they know what we’ve got. You know hopefully we do a few things differently they aren’t prepared for. But, it will be an exciting game for sure.”