Northside Christian wins, Iowa errors help Warriors extend streak
IOWA — Defensive miscues early and late doomed Iowa in an 8-4 nondistrict Northside Christian win on Thursday.
The Warriors (13-2) extended their winning streak to 11 games. The loss ended Iowa’s 11-game win streak.
Trouble for the Yellow Jackets (12-2) started early with the first three Northside Christian batters reaching on an infield pop-up and pair of long fly balls that barely eluded the grasp of Yellow Jackets outfielders. Two of the runners came home to score.
The Warriors used extra-base hits to tack on a pair of runs in the third inning, with Kelsey Gaspard hitting a solo home run followed by doubles from Mak Droddy and Kate Daigle. Kinsley Foreman singled and scored on a grounder by Karlee Abshire in the fourth.
Iowa’s offense kept pace early. Kamryn Howard tripled to score Kylie Boudreaux and Bentley Richard in the first inning. Karagan Howard singled in the second and scored on a single by Ana Alexander, who added a solo homer in the sixth inning.
The Yellow Jackets committed a pair of errors in the seventh, leading to a three-run homer by Droddy. Iowa threatened in the bottom half of the inning with singles from Richard and Kamryn Howard, but Warriors pitcher Morgan Louviere escaped with a grounder for the second out and a diving catch by shortstop Gaspard on a liner.
Alexander finished with three hits to lead the Jackets. Kamryn Broussard and Kamryn Howard had two hits each.
“We did a good job of putting pressure on them early, they just outhit us,” Iowa head coach Kenzie Singletary said. “(Louviere) had a lot of movement on her ball; she was keeping it off the plate, keeping it away from (Iowa hitters). She was hitting her spots.”
Singletary said the Jackets’ struggles were uncharacteristic.
“Our pitchers have been hitting their spots, not giving up many hits,” she said. “We have done a good job hitting the ball, putting pressure on opponents. Our defense has been solid. We just made too many errors today.”
Northside Christian head coach Ryan Hanagriff said the win was a quality one for his team.
“It is the biggest win of the year for us,” he said. “(Iowa) is a really good team, a 3A team playing some really good softball. It was good for us to be able to come here and compete.”
The first three hitters for the Warriors — Bailey Newman, Gaspard and Droddy — combined to reach base eight times and score six runs.
“They are huge; they always come through with timely hits,” Hanagriff said. “They do a great job getting on base and they give us great leadership.”
Kirk Meche / Special to the American Press