The Hillsboro softball team picked up where they left off last season with an explosive offense. The Trojans defeated Nickerson 19-2 and 15-0 in two four-inning games Tuesday.
“It was fun,” center fielder Tena Loewen said.
In the opening game, every Trojan hitter reached base and scored a run. The table was set by Danae Bina at the top of the order — she happened to cook the food and bus it too.
In the opening game, Bina went 2-for-2. Her two hits were a home run that cleared the outfield fence and a triple. She recorded four RBIs and three runs. In her other two at bats she was hit by pitches.
She followed up that offensive effort by going 2-for-3 in game two. She reached base twice in the first inning, drawing a walk to start the frame. She punched in two runs with a double to put the Trojans up 8-0.
Bina was pretty good with the glove too. The shortstop turned a double play to end one inning in the first game, stomping on the second base bag and then gunning the runner out at first.
In the second game, she had one play that elicited audible gasps from the Hillsboro crowd. She backhanded a sharply hit ball deep in the hole between short and third. Calmly, she transferred the ball to her throwing hand and rifled the Nickerson runner out by a step at first base.
“It’s hard,” former shortstop Loewen said of the play. “But she knew the batter and took her time.”
“Those are the things we’re going to expect Danae to do,” head coach Stephanie Sinclair said.
Bina had one of many good hitting days for Hillsboro. Second baseman and five-hole hitter Madison Klein went 4-for-4 in the first game with five RBIs and two runs. She reached base three times in game two, scoring a run.
Catcher Bradli Nowak went 2-for-3 with a triple three RBIs and a run in the first game. She went 2-for-2 in the second game with two runs.
First baseman Julie Sinclair went 2-for-3 with a triple, three RBIs, and a run in the first game. She was 2-for-2 in the second game with a run. Loewen was 2-for-4 with three RBIs in game two.
Sinclair really shined on the mound for Hillsboro. She completed three consecutive 1-2-3 innings in the top of the second, third, and fourth. She struck out the side in the third, getting ahead of each hitter with fastballs and then freezing them with changeups for strike three. The last two Ks were looking.
Mother and head coach Stephanie Sinclair said Julie Sinclair gained strength over the offseason showing velocity in her pitches. She also said the sophomore hurler has confidence in her two off-speed deliveries to throw those pitches with runners on in hitter’s counts.