"We beat them 3-1 last night and they might have thought that they could come out here tonight and put it to us. But I think we had these girls ready and they were hungry and had been hungry for a couple of years now," GHS coach Dave Keller said. "They came out and did exactly what we wanted them to do tonight which was bunt, steal bases, run the bases smart and play good defense."
He added that the Lady Tiger Cubs (6-3, 4-0 WCC) performed according to plan on Tuesday.
"This was exactly what we told them we wanted to do tonight," Keller said. "We left Cascade (Monday) and weren't totally satisfied with our offense. We decided, as a team last night, that we were going to come out tonight and play our new style of ball. That's aggressive base running -- small ball -- whatever it takes. Everybody contributed to this tonight."
The key to the Greencastle offense on Tuesday was constantly applying pressure to the Cascade defense. Hannah Spencer led off the bottom of the first with a double. Cassie Alspaugh then bunted her over to third before she scored on a wild pitch. Three batters later, Sarah Land doubled to drive in Briana Baker, who had reached after being hit by a pitch. The Cubs led 2-0 after one inning.
And the next two innings went on like that for the Tiger Cubs. Not only were they getting timely hits, but they were also taking advantage of Cascade mistakes in the form of passed balls, wild pitches and a total of eight walks.
In the second, Spencer and Alspaugh picked up an RBI on back-to-back singles. Land also picked up her second RBI on a Cascade error to put GHS up 5-0 after two.
In the third, it was Alspaugh who drove in both runs on a two-out single.
GHS led 7-0 after the third inning.
But it wasn't just a few players who were being productive. Up and down the lineup, players were getting hits, drawing walks and stealing bases. They were doing just what Keller had said -- whatever it took.
In the field, the Tiger Cubs really showed their growth over last year by how they dealt with not making every play. The first Cascade hitter of the game reached on an error, but Alspaugh caught her stealing later in the inning.
In the second, a miscommunication led to a ball dropping between the first baseman and right fielder. However, right fielder Brooke Lewis grabbed the ball and gunned down the lead runner at second.
"The way I look at is, if we make one bad defensive play, unless it's the last play of the game somebody generally makes up for it for their teammate," Keller said. "The thing we've tried to preach to these girls is, 'You may not make every play, but don't put your head down. There's going to be another play right around the corner.'"
Starting pitcher Mallory Miller went six innings for the Tiger Cubs, giving up two runs on seven hits and three walks. She struck out five Cadets.
While the first three batters reached on Miller in the sixth, the team made the plays to get out of the jam with just two runs scored. They then added a run of their own in the bottom half on a Veronica Sawyer RBI to bring the game to its final 8-2 total.
"We're very proud. It puts us at 4-0 in the conference," Keller said. "We're not thinking too big; we're just plugging away, one game at a time.
"This team's made great strides. They have fun together. They play well together and they pick each other up," he concluded.
The Tiger Cub junior varsity also won, defeating the Cadets 13-5. Kayla Downing picked up the win for GHS. Tennille Burgeson had a triple and Carollea Davis added a double.
Greencastle visits Rockville at 5 p.m. Thursday.
Cascade 000 002 0 -- 2 7 2
Greencastle 232 001 X -- 8 7 2
Hueston and Cooper; M. Miller, Baker (7) and Alspaugh.
WP -- M. Miller.
LP -- Hueston.
2B -- Priest (C), Spencer, Land (GHS).
Greencastle 13, Cascade 5
WP -- Downing.
2B -- Davis.
3B -- Burgeson.
Next game -- Greencastle (6-3, 4-0 WCC) travels to Rockville at 5 p.m. Thursday.