GENOA — Otsego softball came back from down two runs early to defeat Genoa 14-3 in a road contest on Monday.
The win moves the Knights to 4-0 overall and 1-0 in the NBC. The Comets fall to 1-4 overall and 0-1 in the NBC.
Otsego started off the game playing on their heels — something that has been unfamiliar to the team thus far this season as they just came off a 29-1 drubbing of Delta over the weekend.
The Comets found success early against the Knights’ Lexi North, getting one run in the first inning off a double from Kaylin Shields and another run in the second inning as Lily Frias drove in her sister Lacy Frias with a single into left field.
The two-run early outburst for Genoa, and a quiet start to the game for the Otsego bats, gave the Comets a 2-0 lead after two innings.
“I thought Genoa did a good job of coming out and scoring early and punching us in the mouth a little bit,” Otsego head coach Jason Colyer said. “Dealing with adversity early I don’t think is a bad thing.”
The Otsego bats woke up in the third inning as a bunt single by Khole Hutton and a double by Summer Berry drove in the first run of the game for the Knights. The pitcher North helped herself out by driving in Berry and the Knights took the lead with a sacrifice fly by Evelyn Rider.
The three-run inning for the Knights gave them the lead, and they never looked back.
North found her footing in the circle giving up nothing in the bottom of the third. Two more runs from Otsego extended the lead to 5-2 headed to the bottom of the fourth inning.
“We just reminded her (North) that we had the ability to score some runs and put the ball in play. But at the same time, she has no problem stepping up and giving us another gear when she needs to,” Colyer said.
The Comets went scoreless again but so did the Knights in the top of the fifth and in the bottom of the fifth, Genoa drew within two thanks to an Aubrey Lee RBI single.
After a slight hiatus, the Knight’s’bats woke up again scoring nine runs in the final two innings including six in the top of the seventh to pull away with a 14-3 victory.
The 14-run outburst makes it now 43 runs in two games for the Knights, something that Colyer is obviously very pleased to see early in the season.
“I think that the kids are doing a really good job of learning from each of their at-bats. I think their timing gets a little bit better. They continue to communicate in the dugout what they are seeing and the more balls they foul off the more confident they get. Hitting is kind of contagious — when one person gets a hit the rest follow along,” Colyer said.
Despite the rough start for North in the circle, she cleaned it up, getting the complete game win while giving up three earned runs on eight hits and striking out five.
At the plate, it was the bottom of the order that really made some noise for the Knights as Chesney Kuron, Evelyn Hartman and Hutton were the seventh, eighth and ninth hitters and they combined to go 5-for-13 from the plate and scored five runs.
“I was really impressed with the bottom third of our lineup, they did a really good job of getting on base and turning things over for us and moving runners and I think the top of the lineup had a really good day too. It was nice seeing everybody contribute,” Colyer said.
Berry was the major contributor as far as RBIs go. She went 3-for-3, driving in four runs and scoring three herself. She also forced two walks on the day.
Next up for the Knights is another away NBC contest with Rossford on Monday. First pitch is scheduled for 4:45 p.m.