Softball: Minooka’s five-run inning seals victoryThe Griffins' Jorgi Calombaris tags out Mikayla Melone. |Allen Cunningham~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: March 26, 2012 8:12PM
During the top of fourth inning No. 19 Minooka loaded the bases against No. 10 Lincoln-Way East during a scoreless tie. After already hitting a single and being lifted for a courtesy runner, starting pitcher and No. 2 hitter Jackie Lilek looked at her teammates and said: “I will be satisfied if we can get three — we have to score some runs here.”
Apparently, when Lilek talks her teammates listen. The Indians put together a five-run rally that accounted for all of the scoring during a 5-0 victory in New Lenox.
Lilek (1-1), a junior, did the rest — going the distance, striking out four, walking two and scattering three hits for the Indians (2-1).
“She is a bulldog,” Minooka coach Mark Brown said of Lilek. “She always keeps us in games. She had some tough luck during the loss against Naperville North with three unearned runs. But she really battled today.”
And the Indians battled Griffins senior starter Kaycee Hart, who managed her way out of the first two innings thanks to catcher Kesley Smith. Smith threw out three base runners stealing, including two at second base in the first inning to record the first and third outs.
The defense stepped up again in the fourth for the Griffins (1-1) when senior left fielder Brianna Morell threw a laser to the plate, easily throwing out Jordyn Larsen (3-for-4, RBI) for the first out of the inning.
“She threw a bullet,” Brown said. “I told our third baseman, Sara Novak, to pick me up.”
Novak didn’t have a chance to since when she walked with first base open. But Mikayla Melone, Kelsey Smith, Taylor Edwards, and Larsen picked up their coach with RBI singles.
Junior Chrisi Mizera relieved Hart the last three innings, striking out three, allowing one hit and no runs.
“They had a great pitcher,” Lincoln-Way East coach Elizabeth Pawlicki said. “We can hit up and down the lineup, but we haven’t played in a few weeks. We just look to get better every single day.
“Chrisi stepped up big time today, but don’t get me wrong, Kaycee threw a nice game. It was just nice to change up the speed a bit on them.”