Whitnall softball team off to perfect start
Falcons utilize pitching depth during early part of season
A rotation of three capable pitchers is fairly rare in high school softball, and it is quite a luxury for Whitnall head coach Tom Hickman and his staff this season.
Hickman can call upon Alex Cimler, Lara Stachowski and Sarah Bauer, and all three notched victories last week as the Falcons swept their first five games.
Cimler topped New Berlin West 6-1 on Friday and Wauwatosa West 15-0 in a five-inning perfect game on April 8. She also topped Oconomowoc 5-2 in miserable weather conditions on Saturday.
Stachowski downed Greendale 7-2 on April 10, while Bauer defeated Madison Memorial 7-4 on Saturday.
Cimler beats Vikings
The biggest triumph of the busy week was likely the decision over New Berlin West, a WIAA Division 2 state tournament qualifier last season that should be a strong squad again this year.
Cimler worked a complete game, scattering three hits and striking out seven hitters.
She pitched out of jams in the third and fifth innings. West loaded the bases in the third but Cimler struck out cleanup hitter Hannah Just to end the frame.
In the fifth, the Vikings scored a run and had two runners on with one out before Cimler retired the third and fourth hitters on a fly out and strikeout.
The Falcons tallied twice in the first on a two-run single by Liz Thon and added three in the second on consecutive singles by Sierra Grubor, Cimler and Thon. The final run came in the fourth when Jessa Abing reached on a bunt single and scored on Valeri Nowak's single.
Cimler went 3-for-4, Thon 2-for-4 with three runs batted in, Grubor 2-for-4 with an RBI and Abing 2-for-3 with a stolen base.
Whitnall 15, Tosa West 0: Cimler set down all 15 West batters, with five strikeouts.
Kim Robinson went 2-for-3 with a double and three RBI, while Sydney Opdahl was 2-for-3 with a double and two RBI, Stachowski 2-for-3 with three RBI and Grubor 1-for-4 with a two-run inside-the-park homer.
Whitnall 7, Greendale 2: The Falcons scored two runs in the first on doubles from Thon and Opdahl and a single by Renee Caron.
In the fourth, Grubor singled in Emily LaMonte and Nowak, and in the fifth, Thon belted a long opposite field home run.
Thon went 3-for-4 with a double, home run and one RBI, while Nowak was 2-for-3 with a triple and RBI and Grubor 2-for-4 with two RBI.
Stachowski went seven innings, allowing three hits and two unearned runs while striking out seven.
Whitnall 5, Oconomowoc 2: The Falcons had only 10 players in the first game of a doubleheader at Oconomowoc as five junior starters were taking the ACT exam.
Cimler had to work on a field which had been covered by hail and was forced to battle a biting wind and temperatures in the 40s, but she pitched a complete game, allowing four hits and fanning 10.
"Because it was so cold, it was tough to get a feel for the ball," the coach said. "It limited the amount of spin she could put on the ball."
Whitnall broke open the game in the bottom of the fourth. Krista Stribling doubled in one run and Alex Goudy walked. LaMonte singled to score Stribling and Goudy scored as well.
Opdahl was 2-for-3, Nowak 1-for-3 with two RBI and Stribling 1-for-3 with a double and RBI.
Whitnall 7, Memorial 4: Bauer got her first start of the season and went the distance, allowing eight hits, striking out 10 and walking two.
"She struck out the last batter of the second with the bases loaded," Hickman said. "She kept wiggling out of trouble with strikeouts."
Thon singled home Grubor in the first inning and singled home two more in the fourth inning to make it 5-0.
"It was nice to get outside of the Woodland (Conference) for a day and play Oconomowoc and Memorial, teams that we don't get to see very often, if at all," Hickman said.
Whitnall played two games earlier this week and is now off until Monday, April 28, when it hosts New Berlin Eisenhower.
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