Single was first hit of the game for the Genoa-Kingston outfielder
GENOA – Genoa-Kingston outfielder Ashley Peterson was the hero for the Cogs, delivering a walk-off RBI single up the middle of the infield to give G-K a 6-5 victory over Winnebago in extra innings Wednesday.
The at-bat was Peterson’s lone hit of the game but was all the Cogs needed to secure the victory in the bottom of the ninth inning after G-K tallied only one hit the previous four innings.
“That’s softball,” G-K coach Andrew Freund said. “You just keep hitting it hard, see what happens, and then you get a little dinger like that up the middle to win the game.”
With one out and the bases empty in the bottom of the ninth, G-K infielder Leea Perry hit a single to give the Cogs their first hit since the fourth.
In the next at-bat, G-K pitcher Ashley Clemente smacked a double to left field, advancing Perry to third.
After going hitless in her previous four plate appearances, Peterson rose to the occasion and hit a slow roller up the middle of the infield, bringing in Perry for the victory.
“It wasn’t the best hit, but it was just good enough.” Peterson said. “It did the job.”
Clemente finished 3 for 5 at the plate with three doubles and two RBIs. She struck out 10 batters, pitched all nine innings and didn’t allow a hit in five innings.
“She’s a good player,” Freund said. “She’s really hitting the ball hard this year. She battles on the mound, just a great senior leader. That’s the kind of player you love having on your team.”
After allowing Winnebago to score five runs on eight hits through the first six innings, Clemente didn’t allow a hit or run in the final three innings of play.
I just tried to keep the ball low and minimize the hits,” Clemente said. “And the hits that they did get, I tried to make them groundouts, so my fielders could back me up and make the plays.”
By the numbers: Perry finished 3 for 5 with two doubles and an RBI. G-K’s three consecutive hits to conclude the game were its most successive hits of the contest. Winnebago infielder Addy Provi went 2 for 4 with an RBI and a run.
Beyond the stats: Winnebago outfielder Bella Intravaia made running catches in center field to prevent Peterson from getting her first hit of the game in the second and fourth innings.
“She was making really good catches, and I don’t want to take that away from her, but it was kind of like, ‘Aw, come on. I have to move it around,’ ” Peterson said.
They said it: “It was a hard-fought battle,” Winnebago coach Annie Getschel said. “We didn’t get a hot jump on the bats today. We didn’t get the key hits when we needed them, left a lot of runners on base. I’m proud of my pitcher, and I’m proud of us going strong for the nine innings we did.”
Up next: The Cogs are at a tournament Saturday at Rockford East.