ROSEMONT, Ill. — Team McCleney tallied just six hits in its Week Three opener against Team Jaquish on Friday night. In its Saturday contest against Team Chidester, the squad surpassed that total in the first two innings before cruising to a 10-2 Athletes Unlimited Softball victory at the Parkway Bank Sports Complex.
Both teams stand at 1-1 on the week after Saturday’s game, including Team McCleney claiming its first win of the weekend.
Team McCleney’s top three hitters – outfielders Haylie McCleney, Victoria Hayward and Amanda Lorenz – accounted for 10 of the team’s 16 hits in the victory. The trio also scored eight of the team’s 10 runs in the contest with McCleney and Hayward each crossing the plate three times.
Pitcher Rachel Garcia complemented the offensive explosion by pitching a complete game, giving up two runs on five hits with six strikeouts. Garcia, who earned MVP 2 honors and a game-high 184 leaderboard points in the victory, upped her record to 2-1 with her first complete game of the season.
Outfielder Morgan Zerkle paced Team Chidester in the loss with a 2-for-3 effort, including a home run, while pitcher Maggie Balint was named the game’s MVP 1 selection after throwing 4.1 innings with four strikeouts.
HOW IT HAPPENED
After Team Chidester opened the scoring with Zerkle’s solo home run in the first inning, Team McCleney exploded for 10 unanswered runs in its first three trips to the plate for a commanding 10-1 lead. The squad scored three runs in the first inning before a five-run outburst in the second frame. A two-run third inning upped the advantage to nine runs.
The win allowed McCleney to rise up the leaderboard by five spots, moving into the No. 2 position pending the result of Saturday’s second game. Hayward, meanwhile, sprinted into the seventh spot after elevating up the leaderboard 10 positions with her 150 leaderboard points.
Lorenz was named as the game’s MVP 3 selection and finished the night with 168 leaderboard points.
Hayward ran her hitting streak to 15 consecutive games with her 3-for-5 performance … It also marked her fourth multi-hit game in the last five outings.
McCleney has now hit safely in five of her last six games after a season-high four hits on Saturday … She has also reached base multiple times in a game five times so far this season.
Hayward became the 18th different player to hit a home run with her two-run shot in the third inning.
Corner infielder Rylee Bayless made her first plate appearance of the season as a pinch hitter in the seventh inning, drawing a walk.
Garcia became the second pitcher to hurl a complete game this season … Danielle O’Toole has pitched a pair of complete games in her last two outings.
Balint nearly matched her season total with her 4.1 innings on Saturday … The San Diego State alum had thrown 5.2 innings in her three previous appearances.
- #1 – Maggie Balint (Team Chidester, +60)
- #2 – Rachel Garcia (Team McCleney, +40)
- #3 – Amanda Lorenz (Team McCleney, +20)
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