Trevyn Feasel of North Union puts the ball in play during a 2019 game. The Wildcats fell to Springfield Shawnee over the weekend. (Journal-Tribune photo by Sam Dillon)
Spring athletics have returned for North Union as the baseball and softball teams stepped back on to their respective diamonds after a year off.
Both teams made the trip to Springfield Shawnee to open the season against the Braves as part of Central Buckeye Conference crossover contests.
The outcome was somewhat bleak for both NU teams.
The Wildcats’ baseball squad fell to the Braves by a score of 13-3, while the Lady Cats stumbled, 15-3.
Shawnee’s bats got to work quickly against NU’s Ethan Hoffer, who was on the bump to open the game.
The Braves stung the Wildcats for a pair of runs in the first inning.
Hoffer was able to hold Shawnee in the second before giving up another run in the third.
The Wildcats picked up their first run in the top of the fourth on a Nolan Draper sacrifice fly .
The Braves will answer with a vengeance in the bottom half of the inning.
Hoffer returned to the mound in the fourth and was roughed up for four runs.
Coach Klarke Ransome called on Caden Potts to come in relief.
He notched the final two outs but not before giving up an additional four runs.
As a result, Shawnee jumped out to an 11-3 lead.
NU clawed back with two runs in the fifth.
The Braves responded with runs 12 and 13 to widen their gap to 13-3 in the bottom of the fifth to end the game on the run rule.
NU 000 12 3 3 2
Shawnee 201 82 13 13 3
The Lady Cats suffered a similar fate in their game.
They took the early lead in the first inning by scratching a run.
Sophomore Bailee Amstutz was inside the NU to open the game.
She hurled solid opening inning to hold on to the Lady Cats’ 1-0 lead.
NU went back to work at the plate and picked up its second run.
Shawnee, though, answered in the bottom of the second with seven runs against to take a 7-2 lead.
North Union couldn’t find an answer to the Braves’ offensive show in the top of the third.
Amstutz returned to the circle in the bottom of the inning and yielded a few runs.
Coach Dawn Draper called on reliever Laine Sparks to pick up the final out of the inning.
Sparks gave up several runs as the Braves continued their offensive show at the plate.
They stretched their lead to 13-2 after three innings.
Shawnee added a pair in the fourth inning.
NU answered with a run in the top of fifth inning.
However, the damage was already done as the game was called after four and half innings.
NU 110 01 3 10 3
Shawnee 076 20 15 10 0
The Lady Cats bounced back from their season opening lose in a double-header Saturday.
The Wildcats opened against Madison-Plains and won 17-2 in five innings.
The Lady Cats ran out to a 17-0 lead after four frames.
The Eagles scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth before the game was called because of the run spread.
Kayla Sedgwick went three-for-four at the plate with three RBIs.
Kennady Ruhl went two-for-two and drove in three runs.
NU 443 60 17 15 1
MP 000 02 2 5 5
NU beat Elgin, 9-3, in the second game.
The Comets struck first with a single run in the opening frame.
The Lady Cats answered back with a pair of runs to take a 2-1 lead.
NU stretched its lead to 4-1 after the second inning.
Sparks kept the Lady Comets at bay in the third inning.
Elgin, however, stung the sophomore pitcher for a pair of runs to close the gap to 4-3 at the end of the fourth.
Amstutz took over in the circle.
The reliever held the Comets to only two hits during her three innings of work.
NU’s hitters worked Elgin for five runs over the fifth and sixth to stretch its lead to 9-3 where the game would stand.
Sedgwick had her second solid game at the plate, going three-for-four for two RBIs. Regan Martino had a perfect two-for-two and added a pair of RBIs.
Elgin 100 200 0 3 8 2
NU 220 014 x 9 7 3
The Lady Cats are now 2-1 for the season and are scheduled to return to action by hosting Graham today.