By Jake Thompson
MARTINSVILLE — For the second night in a row, the Plainfield Quakers softball team 10-run ruled a sectional opponent in the fifth inning. After downing Martinsville 12-1 Monday night, Plainfield came back and dispatched Mooresville 13-2.
The Quakers’ offensive output and strong defense have both played a big role in their success.
“The thing of it is, if we play intense and play our game, we play well,” Plainfield coach Brad Beaman said. “The thing is to keep that intensity and focus and we’ll be there.”
Just a week ago, the Quakers split with the Pioneers winning 2-1and losing 7-6 on a walk-off homerun. Beaman said Mooresville pitcher Taylor Chitwood had caused the Quakers problems in the past.
“Chitwood has always kept us off balance and the team listened to our adjustments in what we told the to do and it just worked,” Beaman said.
Plainfield jumped on top of Mooresville in the first as a single by Maggie Stahl and a walk by Chitwood of Mackenzie Reeder brought Erin Laswell to the plate. After a two-run homer to end last night’s contest, Laswell blasted one over the left field fence and on top of the batting cage for a 3-0 lead.
The Quakers never looked back or let up.
A solo blast in the second by Kylie Cason — her second career homerun — put Plainfield up 4-1. Cason played softball her freshman season and returned after running track for two years.
“It feels really good,” Cason said. “I’ve been working hard in practice and it just worked for me. (The ball) came in high and I just went for it.”
It was another big inning that put the game out of reach as the Quakers cycled through the batting order in the fifth, racking up hits from Stahl, Laswell, Cason, Mackenzie Jeffries, Brooke Bryant, Kelsey Bruhn, Kendyl Wheeler, Darien Garrigus and Brooke Bryant.
That onslaught brought in six runs and put the contest far out of the Pioneers’ reach.
The chemistry between the players on the Class 4A defending state champions has brought out the best play so far this postseason and at just the right time.
Some relationships have grown since childhood, like that between the pitcher (Laswell) and catcher (Stahl).
“We just turn it on,” Stahl said. “The seniors push everyone and they in turn start to push us. It’s a chain reaction.
“(Erin) and I have always had that bond and if I want her to throw something, she already knows what I want her to throw. She know’s what I’m thinking and she know’s what I’m thinking and we mesh well.”