SYLVANIA — Napoleon’s softball team broke out of its offensive slump in a big way, but Sylvania Northview racked up 17 hits en route to topping the Lady Cats 15-9 in Northern Lakes League play Monday.
“I’m, overall, very happy; this was very tough conditions to play in,” Napoleon coach Kelsey Cowell said of the game, which was played in a steady, light rain on Northview’s field turf. “One, it’s never fun to play in mist, especially as a pitcher. Two, we’re not just playing in mist on a dirt field, we’re playing on a turf field. We haven’t played in rain all year and we’ve only played on turf once and it was dry turf. Those two elements play a huge factor in the game, but we came out and we hit.
“We looked strong in that sense so I’m very happy with that aspect,” Cowell said.
Napoleon fell to 2-13 overall, 1-7 in the NLL; Northview is 7-12, 3-5.
The Lady Cats entered having scored five runs in their last 47 innings — with five scoreless outings in seven games.
They wasted little time getting rolling Monday, putting up three quick runs in the first inning. Napoleon scored four more times in the second and scored twice in fifth.
“Going off of the last time we played Northview, too, they aren’t a weak team,” Cowell said. “They had a very strong first game against us, too. I’m happy with how we came out. Overall, I’m pretty happy with how we did today.”
However, Northview’s offense proved to be too much.
The Lady Kats tied the game with three runs in the first inning, took control with seven runs in the second to go up 10-7 and added two two-run frames and a solo spot in the sixth.
“They hit us hard the first time; they have a team of good hitters,” Cowell said of a 13-6 loss April 16 at Napoleon. “Pitching, holding onto a ball in the rain, it’s tough.”
Napoleon set the first offensive tone as Jadyn Wilcox and Anna Mack smacked first-inning RBI doubles and Ella Rausch had a RBI single — all with two outs.
“That was the first thing I touched on when we had our huddle on the game,” Cowell said of scoring first. “We haven’t done that since the first couple games of the season. That was nice to see. That’s what we want to take into the tournaments. We play Van Wert (next week). We want to come out strong, start getting those things figured out so we’re ready to make a presence in the tournament.”
In the second inning, Napoleon’s Ella Griffith laced a RBI double to left-center on an 0-2 count and scored from third on an error by Northview’s catcher; Mack added a sac fly RBI; and Rausch hit another RBI single up the middle.
Despite falling behind 14-7 through four innings, the Lady Cats kept threatening.
Napoleon was never retired in order all afternoon, while Wilcox and Regan Badenhop each had back-to-back RBI sac flies in the fifth inning.
For Northview, Emily Kahan tallied four RBI with a triple, two doubles and a single; Olivia Topolski had a two-run single and two RBI singles; Jessica Leggett tripled in a run and singled; and Jillian Turner had two hits — one a two-run double in the fourth.
Spencer Schwaiger took the loss in the circle, allowing eight runs on seven hits in one inning with one strikeout and three walks. She faced five batters in the second inning.
Zari Fielder threw six innings of relief and surrendered seven runs with three strikeouts.
Napoleon hosts Wauseon tomorrow in non-league play.