Eskymos sweep rival Braves
GLADSTONE — Solid pitching and a versatile offense lifted the visiting Escanaba softball team to a sweep Tuesday against rival Gladstone.
The Eskymos, who totaled 23 hits, swept the Braves 7-0 and 5-2 as Gabi Salo pitched a no-hitter in the opener and Nicole Kamin and Salo combined on a two-hitter in the nightcap.
Esky coach Jamie Segorski especially liked a versatile offense of effective small ball and long ball – Cassie Wisler hit her first career homer and Taylor Gauthier also belted a solo round-tripper in the opener.
“I thought it was nice to see a combination of the long game and short game together,” Segorski said. “We’ve struggled with that this year. It was nice to see it come together. It was nice to see Cassie hit her first homer. She has a ton of power and she finally got one in a game.”
In the opener, Salo walked Gladstone leadoff batter Taylor Trudeau, who was thrown out stealing. Salo retired the next 20 batters in order, including 14 strikeouts for her sixth no-hitter of the season.
Esky (20-3) took a 1-0 lead in the second inning on Wisler’s solo homer.
The Eskymos scored five runs in the sixth inning on five hits and one Gladstone error.
Picking up RBIs in the inning were Claire McInerney, Maddy Griffin, Wisler, Dakota Cloutier and Salo.
Gauthier’s solo homer in the seventh capped the Eskymos’ scoring.
Esky managed 11 hits, with Gauthier and Wisler leading the way with two apiece.
Lexi Winling suffered the loss for the Braves with five innings of work and Andie Balenger pitched the last two innings.
In the nightcap, Kamin pitched the first 5 2/3 innings, allowing two hits and two runs, while striking out seven. Salo closed the game and struck out two.
Esky took a quick 1-0 lead in the first inning and added three runs in the third inning, thanks to RBI singles by Maddy Block and McInerney and an RBI double by Wisler.
Gladstone scored its two runs on RBI singles by Morgan Letteriello and Kaitlyn Hardwick.
Winling pitched the first three innings and allowed four runs and Balenger pitched the last four innings and allowed one run.
Cloutier’s RBI single knocked in Wisler with Esky’s final run in the seventh inning.
Esky had 12 hits in the second game, and Segorski cited speedy sophomore leadoff hitter Block for her quality at bats and two stolen bases.
“We hit the ball pretty well,” Segorski said. “It was nice to put the bat on the ball like we did. Going forward we will have to diversify our game more to get those runs across.”
Esky travels to Marquette Thursday for a doubleheader.