BROWNSTOWN — The Brownstown Central and Hauser softball teams could tell it might be an offensive outburst as the wind was blowing toward left field for Tuesday’s season opener.
The Braves and Jets combined for five runs on five hits in the first inning. Hauser led through four and a half innings, but Brownstown pushed across 13 runs in the fifth and sixth innings to claim the 16-6 win.
“When you give up 14 hits and walk five batters, that is not going to win too many games,” Hauser coach Craig Sims said. “It’s that simple, and offensively, I thought we did a decent job by scoring six runs. We earned those six runs and put pressure on their defense.”
In the first inning, Erynn Shaw made it a 3-0 game with a two-run home run. In the bottom half, the Braves got a two-run homer from Brooke Ebbing to pull within 3-2.
Then in the third inning, Hauser’s Leslie Sims scored on an error, and Shaw blasted a solo home run to right field for a 5-2 lead. Brownstown tacked on one run in the bottom of the third to make it 5-3, and Hauser made it 6-3 with a run in the top of the fifth.
“We knew coming in that Hauser was going to be pretty good,” Brownstown coach Monte Ault said. “On that Shaw girl, I didn’t know too much about her, but we gave her two good pitches that she put out.”
In the bottom of the fifth, the Braves’ ninth batter in the order, Morgan Wehmiller, hit a solo homer to make it 6-4. Beth Wayman followed with a double, and Brooke Rogers crushed a pitch over the center field fence for a 6-6 tie.
Bailey Bonebright then grounded out to the second baseman for the second out, and Ally Lorenzo scored the go-ahead run to put Brownstown on top 7-6.
“Defensively, we had three errors, but I don’t think any of them cost us,” Craig Sims said. “Shaw did a nice job, and our leadoff batter got on base and scored every time. Offensively and defensively, I thought we did enough to win the ballgame.”
The Braves put the game away with a nine-run sixth inning. Kourtney Branaman and Courtnie Pullen each had a two-run single, while Katelyn Gray had a two-run double.
The Braves finished with five doubles and three home runs.
“I just liked the way our team bounced back after getting down 3-0,” Ault said. “We have some good hitters, too, as we had three home runs by three different players. We’ve got five girls who are capable of putting it out.”
The Jets used two pitchers, and it was Sidney Giles who took the loss. She pitched the first inning and was replaced in the second by Kali Shoemaker. Giles then returned in the sixth inning.
Branaman pitched all six innings and gave up six hits, struck out five and walked two.
“I thought Kourtney pitched well, and she is not going to strike everyone out,” Ault said. “Our defense is also pretty solid, but overall for first game, the way we hit the ball was good. We had hits throughout the lineup and got a home run from our No. 9 hitter.”