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Alex Thomas' power and big day leads Avon Lake Shoregals past Olmsted Falls Bulldogs
Thomas blasted a pair of home runs and had five RBIs to pace the Shoregals 16-hit attack. Fellow senior Annie Wennerberg threw a one-hitter as host Avon Lake moved a step closer to a Southwestern Conference championship with a 10-0 six-inning win over Olmsted Falls on Thursday.
“It was a really good and felt really good to play on our field for the last time as seniors,” Wennerberg said. “I am really going to miss it next year. I knew we’d play well. It was exciting too.”
Thomas got things started for Avon Lake (22-1, 12-1) with a deep blast to right-center field in the bottom of the first. After the Shoregals pushed a run across in the bottom on a Tori Meyer single, Thomas came through again.
With Wennerberg on first, Thomas blasted a 1-0 pitch over the left-center field fence for her second home run of the day and give Avon Lake a 4-0 lead.
“It feels good,” Thomas said. “I was in a hitting slump for a while. (Today), I was focused on hitting line drives and just trying to have compact swings … I guess I just had a good day.
“(On the first one) was a little outside so I took it to right-center (On the second one) it was more on the inside a little and a little bit lower so I had to go down and get it.”
The four-run lead was more than enough for Wennerberg, who allowed just a single hit in the six innings of work. She finished with nine strikeouts — which included four in row to improve to 18-1.
“I was a tired because it’s my fourth game this week,” Wennerberg said. “I knew we’d play well. It was exciting too. I wasn’t worried (about the offense). I knew we’d come alive.”
The Shoregals’ offense did come alive in the bottom of the sixth. With one out, Avon Lake had seven consecutive hits. Senior Allison Theberge had an RBI. Thomas capped her perfect 4 for 4 day with a single to center to plate two more runs. Seniors Paige Collins and Morgan Turner each had an RBI.
Collins scored the game’s final run after she was caught in a rundown, but an errant throw allowed her to score from third.
The 16-hits pleased Avon Lake Coach Buzz Mullen, but he was happier with the way the hits were.
“(In the last inning) Everything was hard and on the line,” Mullen said. “That’s probably three-four games since we’ve done that. That’s a plus going into the tournament that we know we’re starting to come back alive like we were at the beginning of the season.
“I’ve always had confidence in them. It’s just trying to get confidence in themselves to say look I have to get my pitch and hit my pitch.”
Avon Lake looks to clinch a share of its first SWC championship since 2007 when it travels to North Olmsted next Monday.
Last Updated: 5/9/2013 11:44:21 PM EST