The Waterloo, Columbia and Dupo softball teams got off to good starts last week, while Valmeyer and Gibault suffered defeats.
Waterloo opened its season at home last Wednesday against Wood River. Waterloo jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the third inning and added single runs in the fifth and sixth innings to take the game, 4-2.
The Bulldogs received a strong pitching performance from Kasey Bradley, who went the distance allowing 2 runs on 7 hits while striking out 11.
Kaitlyn Storm led the offense, going 2-for-3 with a homerun, double and RBI and scoring 2 runs. Katy Polacek was 2-for-3 with a double and run scored and Kylie Albrecht, Kasey Bradley and Taylor Yearian added an RBI each.
The ‘Dogs played Steeleville on Saturday and got another strong outing on the mound and gave their pitcher an early lead to work with on the way to a 3-1 win and a 2-0 season start.
Mallory Meyer pitched 7 innings, giving up 1 run on 3 hits and striking out 7.
Storm continued to hit well, going 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored. Bradley, Kady Cecena and Madison Kruse had an RBI each.
“Overall, the team has shown great promise. Since it is early, we still have some kinks to work out, but we are doing a lot of the small things right,” Waterloo head coach Sarah Renner said. “I think the first two games have built some confidence and helped the girls get comfortable in their new roles and positions.”
Waterloo hosts O’Fallon on Wednesday and plays Friday at Belleville East before hosting cross-county rival Columbia on Monday.
Columbia also started strong, easily sweeping a doubleheader against Piasa Southwestern at home on Saturday, 11-1 and 12-2.
The Eagles scored 8 runs in the first two innings of game one, the big blow coming off the bat of Rachel Garcia, who hit a grand slam.
Brianna Weilbacher went the distance on the mound, allowing 1 run on 3 hits and striking out 8. She also helped her own cause at the plate, going 1-for-3 with a home run and 2 RBIs.
The Eagles’ offense stayed hot in game two, putting up 12 runs in the first three innings on the way to a 12-2 win.
Garcia led the offense again, going 3-for-3 with another homerun and 5 RBIs. Caitlyn Touchette was 1-for-2 with a double and 3 RBIs. Weilbacher went 3-for-3 with a double.
“Overall, I am pleased with how we performed. We played
solid defense and we were patient at the plate and had good at bats,” Columbia coach Rhonda Major said after the game.
Columbia hosted Belleville West on Tuesday, and will host Mascoutah on Thursday and Shelbyville for a Saturday doubleheader before Monday’s showdown with Waterloo.
Dupo opened its season in style Thursday at Bunker Hill. The Tiger bats were on fire, putting up 15 runs in the first three innings on their way to an easy 15-0 short-game win.
Megan Brown went the distance on the mound for the win, allowing no runs on 4 hits while striking out 12.
Rachel Donald went 3-for-3 with a double and 3 RBIs. Skylure Barlow, Caitlyn Brizzi, Brown and Amber Mobbs each added 2 RBIs.
The Tigers played two games Saturday in Waltonville. The first game was against Nashville. Dupo had a hard time figuring out Nashville’s starting pitcher, who held the Tigers to 4 hits in the game on the way to a 7-0 victory.
Dupo played Waltonville in the second game and they found their stride on offense, belting out 17 hits en route to an 18-2 win.
Donald led the charge, going 3-for-3 with a home run, double and 5 RBIs. Mobbs was 2-for-2 with a double and 2 RBIs and Alyssa Strubburg was 3-for-5 with an RBI and 2 steals.
Valmeyer opened its season at Carlyle on Friday. The Pirates kept the game in reach until the fourth inning, when the Indians erupted for 9 runs on the way to a 17-7 victory.
Paige Bangle led the Pirates at the plate, going 2-for-3 with a home run, 2 stolen bases and 3 RBIs. Grace Nappier was 1-for-3 with an RBI and Miranda Kaufmann was 2-for-3 with a double and 2 steals.
Gibault opened play Friday against New Athens. The Hawks got on the board with a run in the first, but the Yellow Jackets answered with 2 runs in their half of the second and 3 more in the third on their way to the 8-2 win.
Noelle Davis went 2-for-2 at the plate with a double and 2 runs scored for the Hawks, while Hannah Knese went 1-for-3 with an RBI.