Fairfield Ledger
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Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Nov 22, 2017
SOFTBALL

No. 2 FHS wins two

By ALLAN MANDELL, Ledger sports editor | Jun 20, 2017
Photo by: ALLAN MANDELL Haley Beard fires against Washington on Monday. Beard pitched Game 1 and went the distance, tossing a shutout.

 

 

A chocolate chip muffin.

And she ate it at precisely 9 a.m., Monday.

At around 6:30 p.m., Monday, in the bottom of the fourth inning, Fairfield junior Ashtyn Drish blasted a softball over the centerfield fence for a two-RBI home run against visiting Washington.

This was a wallop. That ball may still be rolling.

“It felt really good as soon as I swung,” Drish said.

“I was exited when I saw Ashtyn hit that shot,” said Trojan pitcher Haley Beard.

Fairfield won Game 1, 10-0, via mercy rule after five innings.

Drish went 4 for 4. Besides her orbit-the-earth homer, she had a double, two singles and scored three runs.

Her secret?

“The chocolate chip muffin at 9 a.m.,” Drish said. “I’ll do the same thing on Tuesday.”

Makes perfect sense. Fairfield hosts Albia tonight at 6:30.

Drish is a sensational hitter. She’s in the pivotal No. 3 spot of a batting order which may very well be the best 1 through 9 lineup in Iowa.

Of Drish’s homer, Fairfield's leading hitter Brynna Bowman said, “I actually have seen Ashtyn hit a ball that far before. But it was her first homer this year and I was very proud of her.”

This is a team that takes enormous pride in its play.

In Game 1, Bowman had two singles and teammate Shay Drish had two hits. Also for Fairfield, Allison Rebling had two hits and an RBI, Sara Trent smacked an RBI double and Kenady Waugh hit a single.

Fairfield’s Kaylee Watson had four RBIs. She hit a single in the third frame, another in the fourth and a game-winning, two-RBI to-the-wall double in the fifth.

“That double was off the end of my bat,” Watson said. “I have no idea how it went so far.

“Our whole team hit very well the whole game. Everything was clicking. We kept getting one hit after another.”

From the circle, Beard totally confounded the Demons. She struck out four batters, yielded only four scattered hits, and no Washington player ever touched third base. Only twice did a Demon ever make it to second base.

Pregame, if Beard would have told Washington she’d give the Demons a run every time they reached first base, Fairfield still would have won Game 1 by a healthy margin.

“Haley’s rise-ball was really on,” said Trent, Fairfield’s outstanding senior catcher.

“The rise-ball has always been my go-to pitch,” Beard said.

Fairfield, currently ranked No. 2 in Iowa, won Game 2 against Washington, 6-3.

The Trojans led 4-1 after one frame, 5-2 after the second inning and 6-3 after the sixth.

Trent was the defensive star of the contest. Actually, she was the defensive star of the night.

No Demon dared run on her in Game 1.

In Game 2, Washington tried stealing on her twice in the second frame. Both times, Trent gunned down the runners with her bazooka right arm.

“That was amazing what Sara did,” said Ashtyn Drish. “She’s awesome.”

Trent has tossed out plenty of runners in her terrific career. But two in one inning?

“I think this was the first time I’ve ever done that,” Trent said. “I’m glad I was able to help us out there.”

Needless to say, all Washington base runners received the stop sign the rest of the night.

Trent was also a power on offense in Game 2 — she had a double, single and three RBIs. Bowman had a double, two singles and two stolen bases. Shay Drish had two hits and an RBI, Watson hit a double and two-RBI single, and Waugh hit a single and stole a base.

With Fairfield ahead 5-3 in the top of the fourth and two Demons on base with two outs, Rebling was called into the circle for relief work — and she delivered.

Rebling induced a groundout to end the fourth inning, completely putting out the fire. Then she blanked Washington in the fifth, sixth and seven frames, yielding only one harmless single.

“Allison shut them down,” Trent said. “The rise-ball was working for her, too.”

Fairfield upped its season record to 22-3. The Trojans have won seven in a row. They remain all alone in first place in the SEC with a 9-1 record.

Washington fell to 5-7, 14-13. The Demons left town feeling no shame.

“Hey,” said Washington’s top player, shortstop Morgan Brinning, “Fairfield is a very, very good team.”

 

 

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