Softball Wildcats start slow in EMO play

By: 
Theo Tate

Montgomery County junior catcher Sam Queathem attempts to throw out a runner in a road game against Wright City on Sept. 10. THEO TATE PHOTO

A year ago, the Montgomery County softball team enjoyed an outstanding season in Eastern Missouri Conference play, finishing with a 6-4 record, including a pair of one-run victories.

This fall, the Wildcats are off to a slow start in conference play, losing their first two games to Silex and Wright City by a combined score of 29-5. MCHS lost to Silex 16-3 in its league opener on Sept. 3 and Wright City 13-2 on Sept. 10. Both games were on the road.

“We put ourselves in a little bit of a hole,” MCHS coach Audra Heimer said. “We have to bounce back and get back on top against some teams.”

MCHS will play nine conference games this fall since Wellsville-Middletown cancelled its season due to low numbers. The Wildcats were scheduled to play Bowling Green at home on Sept. 15. They also have Mark Twain, Clopton, Van-Far, North Callaway, Louisiana and Elsberry left on their league schedule.

Heimer said playing a game against an EMO opponent is challenging.

“Every game is tough,” she said. “All of our conference teams are pretty well equal. There are a couple teams that are a little bit more powering. Elsberry is decent. We watched them play at the New Haven Tournament. They were in the championship game. Bowling Green is going to be good and North Callaway beat Wright City (on Sept. 8), so you never know on any given night. Anyone can win, but we have to be a little more prepared in every game.”

Against Wright City, MCHS lost to a team that won the conference championship last year with a 10-0 record, but started its league season with a loss to North Callaway. Wright City, also nicknamed the Wildcats, cruised to a 9-0 lead after three innings. The game ended with two outs in the bottom of the sixth due to the 10-run rule.

“We still should have played better than what we did,” Heimer said. “We struggled in the basics. We didn’t do the basics. When we give up a few errors and walk a few people, that’s when they score and that’s when bad things happen. We just have to tighten up and do the little things all game long.”

The Wildcats scored their only runs in the top of the fifth on a RBI triple by catcher Sam Queathem – a first-team all-EMO selection last year – and a wild pitch that forced Queathem to score from third. Last year, they lost 15-0 to Wright City in three innings.

Wright City defeated MCHS for the third year in a row.

“They played well,” MCHS senior Addison Massey said. “They did what they needed to and we definitely could have done a few things better. I think a lot of our girls were a little worried today and a little stressed out. I think that translated into our playing.”

In the conference opener against Silex, MCHS gave up 13 runs in the first inning and never recovered. The Wildcats scored their only runs in the fourth.

Fischer tosses no-hitter

Montgomery County junior pitcher Brooklyn Fischer threw a no-hitter in her team’s 10-0 victory over the Paris Coyotes on Sept. 9 at MCHS.

Fischer struck out 14 batters in six innings of work against Paris. It also was her second victory of the season.

The game ended in the bottom of the sixth due to the 10-run rule. MCHS scored two runs in the first, one each in the second and third and three apiece in the fourth and sixth.

The Wildcats played their first home game of the season after participating in the New Haven Classic on Aug. 29 and competing in a road contest against Silex on Sept. 3.

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