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Twin River splits at Wisner

August 23, 2018 GMT

Twin River split a pair of games at Tuesday’s triangular in Wisner, dropping an 8-0 shutout to NEN (Wisner-Pilger, Pender, Bancroft-Rosalie, Lyons-Decatur Northeast) before rebounding with an 11-1 victory over Loganview/Scribner-Snyder.

After the Titans were unable to manage a single hit in the loss to NEN, they totaled nine in the win to go with five walks and three extra-base hits.

Emilee Spitz led the way with a double and a triple, scoring twice while also driving in three. She was also the star on the mound pitching four innings while only allowing one earned run to go with four strikeouts and two hits.

Twin River moved its record to 5-2 overall with the results. The Titans now look forward to a tournament on Saturday in Geneva with games at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m.

“I like the chemistry of this team so far. The girls are all getting along, playing together, backing each other up and supporting one another. They seem like they’re having fun out there together,” coach Renae Van Driel said. “I think we just really need to get more base runners and have more timely hitting. We’re just struggling with our at bats right now.”

Van Driel’s comments sound perhaps out of place after scoring 11 runs in a win to finish the night. A quick review of results through the first seven contests reveals some of her concern.

Twin River has scored 52 runs in five wins while producing just one in the two losses. The five wins have come against opponents with a combined 5-13 record while the two losses are two to teams that have an overall record of 7-2.

“We’re still trying to find a good groove with the bats,” Van Driel said. “I’m still trying to figure out how I want (the lineup). I’ve changed it once for sure, twice actually now. We’re still trying to make the tweaks to figure out who can get on base and who can drive in the runs for us.”

Thus far, Lana Hebda has been the most consistent at the plate of any hitter with more than 15 at bats. She has put together a .533 hitting average to go with a double, triple and six RBIs.

Hebda is reaching base at an impressive clip of .611 and has an on-base plus slugging percentage (OPS) of 1.344.

She is one of five hitters with an average at or above .400 including teammates Spitz (.438), Bailey Oberhauser (.444), Erin Cook (.400) and Halle Konz (.400).

In the circle, it’s been a rotation of Spitz, Cook and Katie Paczosa.

Cook has thrown the most innings of the trio with 13 and 2/3, a 2-2 record, five earned runs, 11 strikeouts and a 2.56 ERA.

“I don’t have any freshmen, so a lot of them have game experience, but we’re still kind of young in the circle,” Van Driel said. “We’re giving them each a chance to see who can handle the most pressure.”

The opponents on Saturday include Ord, Raymond Central and Fillmore Central.

“I’m hoping we can show up and play to our potential,” Van Driel said. “I just hope the girls can put aside our loss against NEN and really focus on improving and doing the little things better.”

Nate Tenopir is the Sports Editor for the Telegram. Reach him via email at ntenopir@columbustelegram.com