SYRACUSE — It’s part of the plan when these things are put together before the schedule is finalized.
On Wawasee softball’s senior night, which honored the two elder stateswomen in the program, one led with her bat while the other fired missiles at an overwhelmed Goshen side.
Amber Yoder jacked her first homer of the season and second of her career to lead the offense while Gabi Routson didn’t allow a ball out of the infield, holding Goshen hitless in an 11-0 win in five innings Monday night.
The no-hitter by Routson had the ace face just two batters over the game’s minimum in the five innings played. Only a fielding error in the second inning and a walk in the third kept Routson from being perfect. Routson finished with 10 strikeouts and looked more than atoned against a Goshen team (5-19, 4-9 NLC) that had beaten Routson and Wawasee, 10-9, just two weeks ago.
“They didn’t really hit my drop ball at all, and the change-up, so I threw them a lot,” Routson said. “I didn’t really worry about the hits tonight. I usually am more worried about earned runs. It’s nice to throw a no-hitter, but I wasn’t really thinking about it.”
The other senior in Yoder led an offensive charge that was consistently making solid contact off Goshen starter Taylor Caouette.
Yoder’s bomb was part of a four-run second inning that began with a two-run single by Alli Ousley, who came home just ahead of Yoder’s trot. Yoder added another two-run single in the third inning.
“It was just so fitting for this game, to finally break out and get some hits and get those RBIs again,” Yoder said.
Sam Malik also added a two-run single, Kylie Norris had three infield hits and scored a pair of runs and Stacie Carr had a pair of hits and scored three times.
The win guarantees Wawasee (14-12, 8-5 NLC) a plus-.500 conference record this season and a spot in the top half of the standings. A win at Concord on Wednesday would move Wawasee into sole possession of third place, its highest position in the NLC since 1996. Wawasee head coach Cory Schutz knows the defense played tonight will make or break his club as the regular season winds down ahead of the Fairfield Sectional.
“Our story all year has been if we play defense, we do well,” Schutz said. “Gabi did a good job of keeping their hitters off balance. Forcing little ground balls and bloops. And we made the plays in front of us. We have the ability to make the plays, and tonight we did that.
“There were some tough plays tonight, a couple bunt attempts that were well-placed, and we did a good job picking them up and throwing them out.”
The Wawasee JV beat Goshen for the second time in three days Monday night, 10-7, despite being outhit 13-9. Eight of nine Wawasee hitters had at least a hit, with Kailee Shepherd doing the big damage with three RBIs. Alexis Graber picked up the win in the circle for Wawasee, now 16-5 on the season.