Softball: Reavis defeats Lemont at Rosemont Dome
By Tony Baranek firstname.lastname@example.org April 1, 2014 6:56PM
Updated: May 3, 2014 6:32AM
Stacy Pratscher didn’t exactly have the greatest start to her day Tuesday at the Rosemont Dome. The Reavis second baseman was standing near the bag during an early inning warmup when a throw through the infield smacked her on the left side of the face.
Pratscher still was feeling it a little bit after Reavis defeated Lemont 4-3, but she didn’t have any problem flashing a smile.
“It just took a really bad hop and caught me off guard,” she said. “It hurts a little.”
Pratscher hurt Lemont a lot more, going 2-for-3. She started the bottom of the fifth inning with a double and scored on a sacrifice fly by Natalie Dudek to tie the game at 3. Then Pratscher stroked a two-out line single to right-center in the sixth to send home Ally Balandis with what would be the winning run.
Balandis finished 2-for-3 and tossed a four-hitter for the Rams (1-3, 1-1) in the South Suburban crossover. Maddy Vermejan doubled and tripled for Lemont (0-2, 0-2).
Pratscher had the final say offensively in a well-played contest on the indoor turf. No one handled her position defensively better than Dudek, who had seven assists and one putout.
“I got comfortable after a while,” Dudek said. “From there, with the other defenders ... I feel we work together well. The ball jumped on you fast, but it was good.”
She was Balandis’ best friend. Balandis had just one strikeout, but consistently kept the ball in the infield. More often than not, the players behind her made the plays.
“The big thing is hitting my locations,” Balandis said. “It’s always better to keep (the ball) low. I’m not a strikeout pitcher, but I know I’ve got my defense behind me.”
Reavis jumped on Lemont pitcher Lauren Young in the first, Alyssa Baffin, Ashley Galason and Balandis stringing together three singles to produce two runs.
Lemont broke through against Balandis in the top of the third. Rachel Hall singled, Vermejan drove a shot to the fence in left for a triple, Rylie Jay walked and Lauren May smacked a two-run single.
Balandis settled down after that, retiring the next 14 Indians.
Pratscher was a fire-starter for the Rams in the fifth with her leadoff double, and provided the clinching blow in the sixth after Balandis reached on a two-base error.
“It felt good. It was a nice swing,” Pratscher said. “I just hit it where I wanted it to go.”
Lemont caught a break with two outs in the seventh when Hall reached on an error. Vermejan followed with a double, but Balandis was able to retire the Indians’ top hitter (Jay) on a sharp one-hopper back to the circle.
“We’ve just got to get those bats going,” Lemont coach Christine Traina said. “We’re a little up and down at the top of the order. We’ve got to get the bottom going, too.”