Swedes succumb to Henry’s fire
Cozad downs Gothenburg 2-0.
Normally when a team has just one hit while striking out 13 times in a contest that has 21 outs a coach might not have much positive to say about the game.
However, Swede coach Roger Neujahr liked what he saw in much of a 2-0 loss to Cozad Thursday while admitting that the players need to adjust better the next time they face Haymaker pitcher Carly Henry.“It was a good game,” he said. “We had a little error here and a little error there. That’s going to happen in high school.
“We needed to put the pressure on them like that.”
He had nothing but praise for Henry who he called one of the two best pitchers in the state among Class C schools.
“I’ve been around fast-pitch softball for many years,” the Swede coach said. “That’s the most dominating pitching I have been against throughout (that time).”
Henry’s speed—she had to be throwing 60 mph, Neujahr said—kept the Swedes off balance all night. Few players could get their bats around quick enough to place hit balls into fair territory.
“We reminded the kids we aren’t going to swing any harder, we’re going to prepare sooner,” the coach said. “We didn’t do a good job of that. Honestly, I think we didn’t realize she was that fast. We hit some pretty good shots.”
They were just foul.
Henry wasn’t the only good pitcher on the mound, though. If Henry was fire, then Gothenburg’s Bre Messersmith was ice. Her off-speed pitches froze Cozad batters, including Henry, as they didn’t know what to expect.
Messersmith scattered four hits and fanned five Haymakers while walking just one.
The Swede pitcher faced the minimum of batters in four of the first five innings. Cozad struck for two runs in the sixth.
Two singles and a double did the damage for the Haymakers with leadoff batter Kylee Griffis and cleanup hitter Lindsey Roger both scoring after hitting singles.
Gothenburg’s best scoring chance came in the fifth inning when leadoff hitter Vanessa Linegar blasted a double to the right-center fence. She moved to third on a sacrifice but was stranded.
Linegar’s hit was the lone safety for Gothenburg.
Reserves roll to 11-0 win
A seven-run first inning powered the Gothenburg reserves to an 11-0 victory over Cozad.
The Swede JVs continued to roll with a pair of runs in both the second and third innings.
Leah Schwanz had a two singles to lead the Swedes. Brittyn Munster, Payton Prall and Amanda Barkmeier each hit a double.
Both Jordyn Haake and Barkmeier saw action on the mound. Haake gave up a pair of hits while Barkmeier blanked Cozad with four strikeouts and one walk.