PLAINFIELD — Sitting in Class 2A and representing the smallest class school competing in the Hendricks County Softball Tournament, the climb to the top of the county softball mountain has never been easy, or for that matter likely for the Cascade Cadets.
However, the Cadets have positioned themselves as one of the county’s elite, winning two of the last three county titles including last night’s 2-1 victory over the Class 4A defending state champion Plainfield Quakers.
The key to Cascade’s victory was simple, the Cadets played superbly in each facet of the game.
Butler-bound senior Brandyce Sallee led the Cadets both offensively and defensively as the Cadets’ lone senior went 3 for 4 with a home run, double and single.
“We are always the underdogs when it comes to the county tournaments,” Sallee said. “Coming out on top really feels great.”
Plainfield took an early 1-0 lead on a solo homerun from pitcher Erin Laswell in the second and Sallee answered with a homer in the third to tie it up. That shot over the right field fence gave Cascade a spark, according to Cadets coach Don Helmick.
Helmick said after the game the girls did not want to let Sallee down and one of those players was junior Kayla Havens.
Havens, who said she’s looked up to Sallee from a young age, made sure that wouldn’t happen.
After a sacrifice bunt from Sydney Stein in the top of the sixth moved Sallee from second to third, Havens stepped to the plate. With two outs and runners in scoring position, Havens connected on a single that brought Sallee home for the deciding run.
“I knew I had to get a bat on it and turned on it and booked it to first,” Havens said. “Brandyce doesn’t get excited that often and just seeing the smile on her face is just really awesome. It’s great to see her really excited because she knows she has a solid team behind her.”