Monday, February 6, 2023

Red hot Huskies sweep Mustangs

If you’re looking for one of the hottest softball teams in the area direct your attention to Middlefield.

The Cardinal Huskies swept Grand Valley in a doubleheader on Saturday to push their overall record to 7-7. After winning just five games last season, the red hot Huskies have won three of their last four games and six of their last 10.

“I’m very impressed with how they played both games,” said Cardinal coach Dennis Ikeler of his team’s 8-2 and 5-1 wins at Grand Valley. “They came out and were hitting the ball. Defensively, they were stopping it. We were on it today.”

The Huskies pounded out 23 hits in the two games with six doubles and two home runs. They also played two of their best defensive games of the season.

“It’s great for all the girls,” Ikeler said. “They’ve all come around and are doing a nice job, both on offense and defense. I’d love it if we can go into the playoffs playing like we are, with the same mentality. That would be good for us. They’re realizing they can do it and they’re playing tough. I think they’re starting to realize they can play as a team and win.”

Cardinal got off to a quick start in game one when Megan Baril doubled and scored on a single by Haley Adams. The Huskies left the bases loaded but the came right back in the second to push their lead to 5-0.

Hannah Hill and Faith Peters hit back-to-back singles and Allissa Nevison drew a two-out walk. Delaney Leichtman and Dawn Scribben then hit back-to-back doubles and Adams had another RBI single.

Leichtman finished the doubleheader 4-for-8 with two doubles, three runs batted in and two runs scored.

“I definitely sense that I've gotten in a type of groove,” she said. “I have been making the contact that I have been because I just go out and have fun. How I've been playing is helping me stay positive when I'm up to bat or on defense.”

Leichtman’s double in the fourth set up Scribben’s two-run homer over the right field fence. Scribben, who finished the day 4-for-5 with three runs scored, two walks and five RBI, also hit a two-run homer in game two.

“Every time I go up to the plate my coach tells me to be confident and just have fun,” Scribben said. “That's what I did. Hitting that home run was the most fun I've had in a while.”

Scribben is the third player to hit a ball out of the park this season.

“I'm happy to be a part of the home run club now with Haley and Delaney,” she said. “Now we need some more players to join us.”

As potent as she was on offense, Scribben might have been more valuable on defense as she stretched and contorted her body at first base to record put out after put out.

“I have no idea where those stretches come from but the adrenaline gets me going and it just happens and it feels so good,” Scribben said. “Overall, I'm so proud of these girls. Between the wins and losses we finally learned how to play as a team and now our hard work is paying off. We deserve this.”

Baril, Adams and Peters all had three hits on the day.

Madysin Ciminello picked up the pitching win in both games.

The Huskies close out the regular season with four league games and a non-conference tilt against Rootstown.

“It’s going to be a tough week coming up,” Ikeler said. “We have four (Chagrin Valley Conference) games plus Rootstown. Hopefully we can win a few of those and get ready for our sectional games. It’s a tough district but if we play well I think we can compete.”


Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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