Stars hold off Tigers in softball

Apr. 17—LEBANON — It wasn't as comfortable as the day before, but Western Boone's softball team did what they needed to in order to get a sweep of Lebanon on Wednesday night.

The Stars led 4-0 after two innings, and held off a late Lebanon rally to come away with a 4-2 win.

"Our pitching and defense were solid tonight," Western Boone head coach Mike Vanderpool said. "Our bats went a little dead in the later innings. We weren't as aggressive as we wanted to be at the plate."

After a 12-2, five-inning loss to the Stars in game one on Tuesday, Wednesday was a much better showing for the Tigers, but it was just a little too big of a hole.

"Krryn (Miller) pitched well today and we did well in certain situations," Lebanon head coach Robert Archambeau said. "They had a red-hot start, and I was hoping we could match that at the end, we just couldn't get it done. Hats off to Western Boone, and we look forward now to the rest of the games we have this week."

Western Boone was cruising up 4-0 through five innings and starter Gabby Lewis had only allowed two hits in the game.

She ran into a little trouble in the sixth, when Miller hit an RBI-single with one out, then Hannah Wilborn singled to bring the tying run to the plate.

The Stars turned to Ally Lewis, who got a strikeout for the second out, but then walked Lillie Hollingsworth to load the bases.

A wild pitch made it 4-2, but with the tying run on second, Lewis got a strike out to end the threat.

"It's great that we have two really good pitchers that we can turn to," Vanderpool said. "Gabby did a great job in those first five innings, then this was a great experience for Ally to come in during that pressure situation and come through. They both did great."

The Tigers tried to rally again in the seventh.

Piper Sharkey walked to lead off the inning, and after a strike out, Addy Zell lined a sinking line drive to left field, but Kirstin McCormick made a catch tumbling to the ground for the second out. The Stars won when the next batter popped out.

"That was a great play by Kirstin," Vanderpool said. "She made some great plays for us last year too, so hopefully making a catch like that continues to give her confidence."

While it didn't end with the win they were hoping for, Archambeau said there are a lot of things the Tigers, now 10-4 and 2-2 in the Sagamore, can take away from the two-game series.

They continue to do a good job of making in-game adjustments, and giving themselves a chance late in games.

"The girls had a lot of inner fight today," Archambeau said. "They saw this is something they can do. At this level, confidence is everything. At the end of the day, we had some confidence at the end and put ourselves in a position to get back in the game."

Western Boone scored three in the first, getting RBIs from Morganne Grant, Mickey Burns and Ally Lewis. Grant drove in another run in the second to make it 4-0.

Gabby Lewis was 2-for-4 with a run scored, and Ally Lewis was 2-for-3 with an RBI. Zell was 2-for-4 with a run scored for Lebanon.

Lebanon is set to host Crawfordsville on Friday, then play Valparaiso in a double header Saturday.

Before the game Friday, the Tigers will do their field dedication that has been pushed back multiple times due to weather.

"Crawfordsville is doing better and better in terms of their program growing, and we look to have a good product on the field on a special day," Archambeau said. "We have to work on the small things to make sure we keep our softball IQ on the front of our thoughts and have solid at bats in the batters box."

Western Boone, now 6-2 and 4-0 in the conference, hosts McCutcheon on Friday and Tri-West for a double-header Saturday.

"We beat a good, quality team here that is strong 1-9 in the order," Vanderpool said. "This should give us some confidence heading into this weekend."

Will Willems is the Sports Editor of the Lebanon Reporter. Follow him on Twitter @Will_Willems.