By Michael Rich
The Delaware Hayes softball team added another line in the history books with a 10-3 victory over visiting Mount Vernon to capture the OCC-Capital title on a chilly Friday evening in Delaware.
“Everyone’s really chill about it because we’re a really good team,” sophomore right fielder Audrey Hannahs said about Hayes’ historic season.
Hannahs, Amaia Daniel and Mallory Stonebraker combined to drive in nine runs to help the Pacers (19-0, 12-0) overcome an early two-run deficit.
“It’s a great feeling,” Hayes coach Mark Thomas said about his team’s fourth title during his tenure. “The girls have been great through the whole thing — level-headed. We’re having a blast.”
Madi Drabick, the third batter of the game, crushed a two-run homer to give the Yellow Jackets (13-4, 9-3) an early lead.
“It was like, ‘OK, we’ve given up two runs — lets go play ball’ … and a lot of teams would have buried their heads right there,” Thomas said.
Hannahs hit a two-run single as part of a four-run second inning to put Hayes on top. Hannahs later scored what turned out to be the game-winning run on a wild pitch.
“She’s coming through clutch,” Thomas said. “She battled that outside pitch and went with it to right field.”
Daniel extended the lead with a two-run single to right in the third inning and Mallory Stonebraker clubbed a two-out, three-run home run in the fourth inning to provide the exclamation point on a three-hit game.
“She’s been hot, and when she puts that (barrel) on the ball and does her thing, she’s a great hitter,” Thomas said.
Madi Huck settled in after giving up the homer. She gave up three runs (two earned) on five hits and two walks and struck out nine batters in a complete-game victory.
“As the game goes on, she tigers up and knows that the D is going to make plays (behind her),” Thomas said. “She’s comfortable … she’s having fun.”
Kaily Schutte finished with two hits and two runs scored and Huck and Caylin Morstadt each had a hit and drove in a run for the Pacers.
Hope Straight took the loss for MV. She gave up 10 runs on 11 hits and three walks and struck out four over four innings.
Bayli Pope led the Jackets with two hits out of the nine spot and Megan Pentz drove in the third run with a single in the fifth.
Macee Marcum pitched two scoreless, hitless innings in relief for MV.
Hayes hosts a three-way against Olentangy Liberty and Westerville North today. Hayes and Liberty are scheduled for 11 a.m. Liberty and North will play at 1 p.m. and Hayes wraps up the day against North at 3 p.m.
Follow Michael Rich on Twitter @mrichdelgazette.