Since a 5-0 loss to Liberty District softball power McLean on April 9, the Madison High girls had reeled off six straight wins going into this week’s action.
With three weeks remaining in the regular season, the red-hot Warhawks are at or near the top of their game. The district tournament is set to begin on May 17.
“The loss to McLean was an eye-opener,” said Madison coach John Schneeberger, of the road setback to the 12-1 Highlanders earlier this month. “After that game, the girls got focused. We believe our best softball is ahead of us.”
Madison (11-2 overall, 7-1 district) will host first place McLean (8-0 district) again next Tuesday evening, May 4 at 6:30.
One of the Warhawks’ most impressive wins of late came early last week over a talented Marshall team, 7-2, on April 20. The district meeting against the long-time, cross-town rival Statesmen team (10-3 overall record, 6-2 district) took place at Madison.
“I expected a hard game against Marshall,” said Schneeberger. “They beat us last year and the second meeting we barely [won]. I thought we hit the ball hard all night [in last week’s win]. And [pitcher] Sam [Brady] pitched her best game of the year.”
Brady, Madison’s junior pitching ace, struggled through a tough top half of the first inning when the Statesmen plated two runs to take the early lead. But after that inning, Brady shut Marshall down over the final six innings. She finished with 13 strikeouts.
“We knew Marshall could hit,” said Schneeberger. “It was a matter of knowing how to pitch them [after the first inning]. They’re a good hitting ball club.”
Madison’s offense tallied 13 base hits in the win. Brady had three of those hits, along with a couple of RBI. Two-hit games for the Warhawks came from EmJ Fogel (double), Kaila Conlon (double, 2 runs, 1 RBI) and Steph Buchko (1 RBI, 1 run).
The Warhawks and Marshall will square off again on Friday, May 14 at Marshall. That will be both teams’ regular season finale.
Madison has received outstanding play from shortstop Khristin Kyllo, who missed the first half of the season because of health reasons. In the six games she has played since her return, the All-District shortstop has batted over .400.
Schneeberger and the Warhawks will be looking to continue to play well over their final seven regular season games.
“I tell the girls to keep working hard over the final three weeks of the regular season, and then it’s the playoffs,” said the coach.