ELDON — The Cardinal softball team did more on Thursday then simply extend its winning streak to six-straight games. The Comets earned a win that might have a long-lasting impact on its season.
Facing eighth-ranked (3A) West Burlington, the defending Southeast Iowa Superconference south division champion, Cardinal won a nail-biting battle with an RBI base hit by Schuyler Conger that plated Jessie McElderry in the sixth inning. It was just the second hit of the night for the Comets, but it would be enough for sophomore pitcher Lexi Fullenkamp.
After allowing the pitcher to reach base, McElderry helped out Fullenkamp by throwing the runner out trying to steal second. Fullenkamp got the next two batters to clinch a huge 3-2 victory that came in a somewhat improbable way.
“We forced six walks to get on base and we scored our two runs in the second both on passed balls,” Cardinal head softball coach Hiliarie Droz said. “Jessie got on in the sixth off their one error, but that’s all we needed. She stole second and got to third when the throw went to outfield before Schuyler drove her in.”
Cardinal moves to 6-2 with the win and 3-1 in the SEISC South. The Comets’ only conference loss thus far was a 3-1 season-opening set back in eight innings at second-ranked (1A) New London.
“This win gives us a lot of momentum moving forward,” Droz said. “I’m very proud of the girls. I really don’t expect anything less from them. Hopefully we just keep getting solid wins like these.”
Cardinal will be back on the diamond at the Oskaloosa Invitational tournament, facing the 12th-ranked (4A) Indians in their home tournament before taking on Lynnville-Sully later in the day.
Cardinal 3, No. 8 (3A) West Burlington 2