It was a pitching duel that ended in a double header split between the Abilene Cowgirls softball team and the visiting Marysville Lady Bulldogs Friday at the Bill Gravette Sports Complex.
Senior Cowgirl Aldyn Wildey and Dani Finchman of Marysville were locked into two intense battles for their respective teams.
Finchman stole the show in game one as she pitched a no-hitter in a 3-0 win over the Cowgirls. She struck out four and walked one Cowgirl batter.
Wildey allowed seven hits but the Bulldogs were unable to cross the plate until their half of the sixth and seventh inning.
She handled the Marysville lineup easily through five innings with a strong defensive performance behind her as she struck out six and walked two.
The lady Bulldogs scored a run in the sixth and added two more in the top of the seventh.
In the sixth inning Finchman hit a one-out single to center followed by a Liz Vogelsberg single. Wildey got Lacy Uhlik to ground out to second and Megan Roberts followed with a single to right.
Cowgirl catcher Carly Gassman threw a strike to shortstop Kiley Crider to cut down Roberts trying to steal second base to end the inning.
Finchman retired the Cowgirls in order in their half of the sixth.
The Bulldogs added two runs off one hit and two Cowgirl errors in the top of the seventh to make the score 3-0 Marysville.
“We hit the ball very well, but we hit line drives right at their defenders,” Cowgirl Coach LouAna Koochel said.
Wildey and Finchman took the mound for game two for their respective teams.
The Cowgirls didn’t give Wildey much offensive support, but she got it done on the hill without it. She pitched seven strong innings to carry the Cowgirls to a 1-0 victory.
She pitched the shutout, allowing no runs on seven hits and striking out six Marysville batters.
Crider got the lone Cowgirl hit allowed by Finchman in game two.
She hit a one-out single to left and was able to advance to second on a fly ball out by Gassman and then went to third on an error by Marysville’s defense. Crider scored the only run of the game on a passed ball by the Bulldog catcher.
“The girls fought really hard and played 13 innings of solid defense. There was one inning in game one when the wheels fell off and Marysville capitalized on our mistakes,” Koochel said.
“The girls’ bats were on; we just couldn’t find a hole. The Bulldogs played our hitters very well,” she said.
“I’m very proud of how hard we worked. Carly threw out two runners and we turned our first double play. The girls are starting to play very well offensively and defensively,” coach Koochel added.
“Right now, we’re sitting at .500 (6-6) and I’m very excited about what the Cowgirls will do the rest of the season,” she concluded.
Next up for the Cowgirls is hosting a non-conference double header against Smoky Valley on Friday.
Marysville 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 – 3-7-1
Abilene 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 - 0-0-2
WP: Finchman LP: Wildey (4-5)
Marysville 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 – 0-7-1
Abilene 1 0 0 0 0 0 x - 1-1-0
WP: Wildey (5-5) LP: Finchman