Fourth-ranked Northgate hands third-ranked Whitewater first region loss, 2-1

Tue, 09/18/2007 - 8:07pm
By: Kevin Wandra

The third-ranked Whitewater Lady Wildcats and fourth-ranked Northgate Lady Vikings both entered their game Tuesday undefeated in the region.

Somebody had to lose.

Northgate pulled out the win, 2-1, but it had to hold off a late rally by the visiting Lady Wildcats to remain undefeated in the region.

Down 2-0 and on the verge of being shut out by Northgate ace Paige Martin, Whitewater came to life at the plate in the seventh inning; three of its first four batters in the inning reached base.

Jamie Saunders and Lauren Williamon started the inning with back-to-back infield singles.

One out later, Kaitlyn Johnson hit a dribbler to Northgate third baseman Liza Dye, whose throw to first baseman Kelsey Floyd took her off the bag.

Megan Gentry then drove in Whitewater's first run with a grounder to short.

Whitewater was in position to tie the game, with runners on second and third and two out, but Martin struck out Audrey Trammel looking with a nasty changeup to end the game.

Martin struck out 10 and allowed five hits and no walks to record the victory.

The win raised Northgate's region record to 5-0. Whitewater fell to 4-1 in the region.

Besides the pitching of Martin, clutch hits were a key factor in Northgate's victory.

Both of Nortgate's runs came with two outs: The first came on Floyd's infield single in the first, and the second came on Kate Kuzma's single off the base of the center-field fence in the third.

A lack of clutch hits cost Whitewater the victory; it left seven runners in scoring position.

"We're making too many mental mistakes," Whitewater coach Stacey Smith said. "We helped out their pitcher tonight by making poor decisions at the plate."

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