By Andrew Westra
Journal Sports Writer
NEW ULM - New Ulm racked up 12 hits in six innings as it went on to defeat St. James Area 10-0 in a South Central Conference softball matchup on Tuesday.
Staff photo by Steve Muscatello
New Ulm’s Briana Sieve slides safely it to second as St. James shortstop Nora Schmidt catches the ball during the Eagles’ win Tuesday at Harman Park in New Ulm.
For more photos of this event go to cu.nujournal.com
The Eagles struck early with three runs in the first inning. Rachel Strandmark and Ellie Schneider both singled to get on base and then scored on a hard hit ball by Brittany Hoffmann which the St. James Area third baseman was not able to handle. Hoffmann later scored on a RBI single by Briana Sieve.
Sydney Schuck started on the mound for New Ulm and earned the win. Schuck allowed just one hit to Anna Haler in the second inning. Schuck shutout the Saints in four innings of work on one hit, one walk, and six strikeouts.
"I know that when they put it in play, my defense will make the play, and that makes me feel very comfortable out there," Schuck said.
Schneider tripled over the center fielders head to lead off the third inning, and Hoffmann singled on a bunt to the pitcher and advanced to second on defensive indifference. Schneider was able to score on a wild pitch, and Hoffman scored on another RBI single by Sieve to put the Eagles ahead 5-0 after three innings.
New Ulm was able to put three more runs on the board in the fourth inning on a RBI double by Sarah Nelsen and two errors by Saint James Area.
"We were just trying to hit the ball hard on the ground and get on base, and it worked for us," Schuck said.
Freshman Brittany Denn came in to relieve Schuck in the circl for the last two innings. Denn preserved the shutout allowing no hits and striking out four batters in her two innings of work.
Sieve scored on a wild pitch in the fifth inning, and Kali Denn ended the game with a RBI double in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Emily Bottem was the losing pitcher for St. James. Bottem allowed 10 runs on 12 hits, three walks and two strikeouts in 5.2 innings.
"We know New Ulm is good," St. James head coach Steve Chapin said. "I thought Emily pitched very well and kept some of their better hitters off-balance at times."
Sieve led the Eagles offensively going 2-for-2 with two RBI. Schneider and Hoffman were each 2-for-4 on the day.
Haler had the lone hit for the Saints as she was 1-for-3 at the plate.
New Ulm (15-2, 8-1) travels to take on St. Peter on Thursday, while St. James (3-12, 1-8) hosts Blue Earth Area on Thursday.
"We just want to keep our bats and defense going and keep everything solid and together as we get close to the playoffs," Schuck said.