Strong defensive effort leads Patriots past Jets

By Kyle Shaner kshaner@civitasmedia.com

April 30, 2014

NEW MADISON — Tri-Village played a solid game while Franklin Monroe struggled with three errors in the Lady Patriots’ 3-1 win on Wednesday in a Cross County Conference softball game.

The teams were almost even offensively as Tri-Village collected five hits and Franklin Monroe had four, but defense played a big factor in the game as Franklin Monroe made three errors and Tri-Village made none.

“We played really well tonight,” Tri-Village softball coach Tracy Barhorst said. “Defensively we played well. Our bats, we’re still hitting the ball very well. We’ve been hitting for a week or two pretty well. We put it together. Rachel (Fickert) pitched a really good, nice game tonight. She kept the ball movement. But our defense played behind her.”

Like it often is, that defensive effort was a deciding factor in the outcome of the game.

“When you play a league game, errors are a big thing,” Barhorst said. “We go back to some of the games we lost it was because of errors. We played a solid game tonight, and we capitalized on their errors. They would have done the same if it was vice versa. That’s how you win games in our league. Our league is tough, and when the other team has an error we have to capitalize, and we did that.”

Franklin Monroe coach Mike Morris said he knew even before the game began that his team wasn’t ready to play.

“We didn’t play good at all,” he said. “We made errors tonight. I don’t know if any of their runs were earned. We walked them; one of the runs was on a walk. We weren’t focused. I knew before we got to school, got on the bus. We’re thinking about anything other than softball. So it’s done. No longer. It’s going to be focused on softball.”

Ecko Brown led Tri-Village with a single, a double and a RBI. Allie Downing, Alex Bietry and Krystal Falknor also each had a hit.

“Their team played great,” Morris said. “They made the plays they had to do. They took advantage of our mistakes.”

For Franklin Monroe Susan Boston had a double and a RBI. Morgan Booher and Bryanna Diceanu also had hits.

Franklin Monroe will play at Bethel Thursday while Tri-Village will play at Newton Thursday.

“We still have a lot of work to do,” Morris said. “We’re going to turn it around.”