FORT WAYNE – Katy Guebard wasnt bothered about the game-opening bunt single she gave up Wednesday night.
In fact, after her Carroll Chargers defeated Columbia City 7-0 she could barely remember it as she was doing postgame maintenance to the mound on her home field.
I didnt really think too much about it, she said. I try to not really put too much pressure on myself. I know that me and my team are going to get the outs. So it didnt make too much of a difference.
You can say that again.
After she allowed the Eagles Emily Gangwer to reach first base, Guebard retired the next 19 batters.
She gave up two hits, walked one and struck out 10 as the Chargers (19-4, 6-0 NHC) clinched their first outright conference championship.
Katy is a workhorse, and we know we are going to get Katys best out there, Chargers coach Donetta Betley said. Thats something shes worked on this year, just that confidence and if that leadoff gets on, shes going to work to retire as many as she can. Im very confident in her and her abilities, attitude and work ethic.
The Chargers were paced by first baseman Heather Schmidt, who was 3 for 4 with two runs and an RBI, and catcher Tori Alberding, who was 3 for 4 with two RBI. Right fielder Kimberline Morris was 3 for 4 with a run.
The Chargers got things going with three runs in the first, as Schmidt tripled, Maddy Peterson had a two-out RBI single and Alberding had an RBI single.
I was really happy that Maddy came through and was able to experience that success because shes been struggling with her bat and getting a little bit down on herself, Betley said. So it was great for her to come through in that pressure situation and pull through and get a big hit for us. Ive very proud of her and her confidence and effort.
After Guebard stuck out the side in the top of the fourth, Schmidt singled up the middle, Jackie Phipps had a bunt single and Ali Richards sacrifice fly made it 4-0.
In the fifth, an RBI single by Mackenzie DiPrimio and an RBI infield pop fly by Schmidt that found a vacant spot at shortstop made it 6-0.
I think we played really good. We played really good defense and had a lot of fly balls caught, Guebard said. We just did a good job tonight.
The Chargers racked up 14 hits off pitcher Krystin VanHouten, who struck out five and walked two for Columbia City (5-10, 2-4). The Eagles other hit was a seventh-inning double off the left-field wall by Allie Vodde.