Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL


March 28, 2014

Altamont downs Greenville 4-3

Ledbetter, Indians hold off Comets late

ALTAMONT — Deidre Ledbetter picked up her defense after two fielding errors put the tying run on base.

Altamont’s senior pitcher bailed herself out of a seventh-inning jam started when catcher Lauren White threw away a dropped third strike, allowing Greenville’s Jackie Hoffmeier to take first base.

Ledbetter struck out two of the next three batters and Emma Richardson reached on an error by Altamont shortstop Audrey Winters.

Greenville got aggressive after Hoffmeier stole third base. She scored on a close play at home after a Ledbetter wild pitch, but Richardson tried advancing from first to third on the play.

Ledbetter’s tag on Hoffmeier was late, but she recognized Richardson trying to take third and threw her out from her knees for the final out of the Indians’ 4-3 win on Thursday.

“We weren’t real sharp, so (the Lady Comets) were probably trying to take advantage of it,” Altamont head coach John Niebrugge said.

Ledbetter kept the Indians’ lead after scoring all four of their runs in the third inning, capped off by a Brooke Burns RBI triple.

The first three Altamont batters reached to start the inning, including an RBI single by Josie Phillips. Ledbetter grounded out for an RBI.

White and Burns picked up back-to-back RBIs before Greenville’s Whitney Gray got out of the inning.

“Brooke came out with a fire tonight,” Niebrugge said. “The upside is there for her and it’s going to be tough to keep her out of the lineup.”

Burns’ triple was the highlight of her night. She reached second, in her first at-bat, when Greenville left fielder Connor Stich misplayed Burns’ deep fly ball.

Phillips, Lauren Ohnesorge and Winters all singled in the game, while Greenville committed four errors.

Ahead 4-1, the Comets barely touched Ledbetter in the pitching circle. Brianna Vankleef scored on a wild pitch in the fifth inning to shrink the Indians’ lead, 4-2.

Ledbetter finished the game with 11 strikeouts and only gave up three hits in seven innings. She ended three of the last four innings with a strikeout and five of the seven.

Greenville stranded Hoffmeier on third base, in the fifth, as Ledbetter struck out the last two batters. Then, the Comets left the bases loaded in the sixth, as Vankleef struck out to end the inning.

Ledbetter physically made the last 10 outs of the game, striking out eight and throwing out a player at third base on two occasions. She struck out Hoffmeier in the seventh, but an error allowed her to take first base.

“We’ve moved things around where (Ledbetter) is going to be a lot of the cutoffs, so she’s going to be trusted with the ball,” Niebrugge said. “If there’s a play to be made, she’s usually capable of making it.”

Altamont (2-2) returns to action at 4:30 p.m. Monday, on the road against Sullivan.

Greenville     001 010 1     3 3 4

Altamont     004 00 X     4 4 3

WP -  Ledbetter (7 IP, 3 R, 11 K, 3 H, 5 BB)

Greenville: Hoffmeier (1B, 3B, SB, 2 R), Richardson (2 BB), Gary (1B, BB), A Stich (RBI), Vankleef (R)

Altamont: M. Ohnesorge (BB, SB, R), Phillips (RBI, R), Ledbetter (RBI), L. Ohnesorge (1B, RBI), White (RBI), Burns (3B, RBI), Winters (1B, R)

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