Softball: West Aurora uses small ball to down Waubonsie ValleyWest Aurora's Ally Wayzer hustles down the first-base line against Waubonsie Valley High School after laying a bunt down on Thursday, April 12, 2012 in Aurora IL. | Terence Guider-Shaw~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: May 9, 2012 10:26AM
Starting out small came up big Thursday for the West Aurora softball team.
The host Blackhawks opened with three straight bunt singles, helping lead to a big first inning. They went on to edge Waubonsie Valley 7-6, snapping the Warriors’ win streak at seven.
“We came out on fire,” said West coach Sara Nagy, whose 4-11 team has had its share of struggles this season.
“Execution. We get the first bunt down then another one and we get some hits. It just comes down to us finally executing and putting pressure on their defense, and we were able to take advantage of it with our speed.”
Senior LaRi Mitchell, who came in batting .550 and went 2-for-3 with a pair of bunt singles, got it started. She then went from first to third on Jessica Mykiska’s well-placed bunt that scooted to the hole vacated by the Warriors’ second baseman moving over to cover first base.
Mitchell scored on Juliana Evischi’s bunt single and one out later, Molly Jordan drove in two runs with a well-placed triple down the right field line that sliced to the fence. LeDesha Nelson then slapped an RBI single.
“They caught us on our heels,” said Waubonsie Valley coach Aly Kelly, whose team falls to 9-3. “We came out expecting them to hit (away) and we just couldn’t handle the short game. The first inning really killed us. We didn’t react well to it.
“The good thing is it’s a nonconference game and gives us an opportunity to learn and the next time we come across this we’ll be well-prepared.”
The Warriors had used a similar attack earlier in the week to down Elgin 5-1 in conference play.
“I even yelled at my kids in the first inning, ‘You’re getting beat at your own game,’ ’’ Kelly said.
The visitors scored a run in the third without a hit with Amanda Lack drawing a walk, stealing two bases and coming home on a wild pitch, but West upped the lead to 7-1 on Mitchell and Mykiska RBI singles in the fourth.
West Aurora sophomore starter and winner Kaylee Hayton (4-5) carried a no-hitter into the fifth inning but gave up four straight singles to open the frame and the Warriors scored three more.
She gave up two more in the sixth, when she was relieved with one out by Gianna Drager, who got her first save.
“They’re both sophomores,” Nagy said. “It’s a big step (to varsity) and they’ve both come a long way since the first of the year. They’re gaining more confidence.”
The bottom of the order keyed Waubonsie Valley with 7-8-9 hitters Jordan Kurth, Haylie Wensel and Jessica Sarch getting two hits each and scoring five of their team’s runs. Senior Alyssa Garcia (1-1) took the loss as Kelly gave freshman workhorse Shannon Hohman a day off.