By Tim Chambers
The stage between Johnson County and Sullivan East was the same type of setting as the last time the two teams hooked up back on March 17. But this time the outcome was different.
Johnson County managed to make a 1-0 lead stand behind a gutsy pitching performance from Brianna Snyder. The end result would be their fourth straight win.
Michala Cretsinger ripped a line drive base hit up the gut in the first inning, scoring Kesley Duperry who had singled. Eden Fenner’s bunt single allowed her to get into scoring position.
That’s all the run support that Snyder needed who twirled a four-hit shutout. She retired the first six batters she faced before working out of jams in four of the last five innings. She credited her defense for their outstanding play. Head coach Dana Smith said it was a combination of both.
“Bri pitched a beautiful game,” said Smith. “She’s throwing so much better now than when she had the wrist injury. She hit her spots and that was the key. Michala and Kelsey had two big hits in the inning. Eden had one too. I thought Brittany Brooks caught a good game behind the plate. This was a total team effort. We made several good plays in the field too.”
Snyder’s ability to work out of a few jams was also a key factor.
East loaded the bases in the fourth and fifth innings but couldn’t score. Each time Snyder got a lazy fly ball out to end the inning.
“My defense did a great job of backing me up today,” added Snyder. “They are making a lot of good plays. It’s all starting to come together. We’re all playing for one another.”
The Longhorns left the bases loaded in the second. And they had another chance at an insurance run in the sixth.
Courtney Brooks and Duperry singled in the second and Fenner reached base on a walk, but Patriots pitcher Brooke McElyea got a fly ball out to end the frame.
For the rest of the story, pick up a copy of this week’s Tomahawk.