MCDONALD'S SWNEWS4U.COM GAME OF THE WEEK (May 2–9)
SRW SOFTBALL: Belmont 8, Highland 0
By Jason Nihles, The Platteville Journal / Fennimore Times / Boscobel Dial
Braves blank #3 Cardinals to pull within a game of first place
BELMONT — The Belmont Braves are still in the hunt for this year’s Six River West softball title after posting their fifth straight win Monday afternoon.
Coach Jeff Hodgson’s Braves (14–4, 10–2 SRC) dominated host Highland 8–0 to hand the Division 5 #3-ranked Cardinals their first conference loss of the season and just second overall.
Highland (18–2, 11–1 SRC) beat Belmont 2–1 back on April 18.
The Braves beat Benton/Shullsburg 3–1 Tuesday to improve to 10–2 in the Six Rivers Conference.
Belmont (14–4, 10–2) within a game of first place with conference games against Pecatonica (8–6) Thursday and at Potosi/Cassville (7–10, 6–6) Monday afternoon.
Rylee Rogers singled to lead off the top of the fourth and later scored on an RBI double by Reese Runde to break a scoreless tie. Sophomore Lainey Riechers then belted a two-run homer over the centerfield fence to make it 3–0.
A Kaci Riechers walk and back-to-back Highland errors allowed two more runs in the top of the fifth.
Another error opened the door for another Belmont big inning in the seventh. Runde had an RBI double to make it 6–0, and Addie McNett capped the rally with a two-out tro-run single to right field.
Senior Payton Johnsen (10–3) struck out three and scattered six hits in the 90-pitch complete game victory.
Belmont opened last week with a 10–0 five-inning win over visiting Potosi/Cassville. Runde went 3-for-3 with a pair of double and two runs scored to lead the winners.
Belmont then beat Wauzeka–Steuben 5–1 Thursday and Arygle 11–0 in five innings on Friday.
Belmont 8, Highland 0
(from Monday, May 8 @ Highland)
Belmont.....000 320 3 — 8 9 1
Highland....000 000 0 — 0 6 3
Leading hitters — B: Reese Runde 2x4 (2RBI, 2R), Lainey Riechers 2x4 (2RBI, R); H: Ella Cody 3x4. 2B — B: Runde. HR — B: Riechers.
W — Payton Johnsen (10–3, 7IP, 6H, 0R, 3K, 2BB). L — Kate Tarrell (7IP, 9H, 8R, 3ER, 3K, 3BB).