Three Rivers has been playing varsity softball for a very long time. On Wednesday at Paw Paw, the wait for the first conference championship in school history ended as the Wildcats swept the Redskins 11-0 and 20-2 to finish 18-0 in Wolverine Conference play.
“It is exciting with individual and team records,” Three Rivers head coach Kendra Kutz said. “But at the same time, we talked about the ego. Keep it down, stay humble, keep doing what you’re doing and keep being competitive. Those records are great, but we aren’t done. Those records haven’t won us districts; those records haven’t won us regionals. But they have certainly put us in a position to do so.”
Kylee Nash torched Paw Paw in the opener, giving up just one hit and striking out 12. And it was like a leisurely evening in the batting cage for the Wildcat offense, which included a 3-for-4 performance by Erin Brady, who, along with Amy Jo Tavernier, connected on homeruns. Karalyn Eldridge (one double), Nash (two doubles) and Jessica Barnes each contributed two hits, and Kali Heivilin added a double. Brady drove in four runs, and Nash, Barnes, Heivilin and Tavernier each tallied 1 RBI.
Barnes, Heivilin and Shantel Blyly stole bases for the Wildcats.
In Game 2, Three Rivers plated eight runs in the first inning, one in the second and 11 in the fourth in the shortened contest. Nash gave up five hits and struck out nine without an earned run allowed.
Heivilin was 3-for-4 with two doubles and a homerun, her 16thof the season, and she finished with 5 RBI. Barnes also collected three hits with 3 RBI, and Thatcher (one homerun), Eldridge (one homerun), Halle Carpenter (one double), Nash and Brady registered two hits apiece. Tavernier and Tessa Hawkins chipped in singles.
Thatcher also drove in five runs, Barnes had 3 RBI, and Eldridge, Tavernier and Brady tallied two each.
Vicksburg finished second in the league with a 16-2 record following Tuesday’s sweep against Otsego.
“We aren’t satisfied; we want more,” Kutz said.
Check back soon for postgame interviews.
Video by Mat Stutzman
Watch our interviews with Kylee Nash, Kali Heivilin and coach Kendra Kutz here: