In the long, fierce and hotly contested rivalry between the Germantown and Homestead girls softball teams, Warhawks coach Rich Anderson had to think hard if there had ever been a game ended by the 10-run rule.
That question arose after the Warhawks hit three home runs in an 11-0, six-inning hammering of the Highlanders at Kennedy Middle School on April 24 to improve to 5-0 in North Shore play and 6-1 overall.
"No, not ever," Anderson, a 27-year coaching veteran, said. "In fact, I'd be surprised if it ever happened again."
But he is not surprised at the Warhawks' fast start. Behind sound defense (just two errors in seven games) and the heady pitching of Kelsey Randrup, who beat Homestead, and Jannelle Schroder (one run in five conference games combined), the Warhawks are looking to build on their North Shore Conference championship of a year ago.
"We wanted this game badly," said returning all-state infielder Amy Johnson, whose three-run homer to right in the bottom of the sixth ended the contest. "We know it won't win the conference title for us, but it will help out a lot."
The Warhawks beat the Highlanders (3-2) twice last year in the regular season en route to the league championship but then lost to Homestead in heartbreaking fashion in the WIAA sectional.
But with gusty winds largely blowing out April 24, Germantown's power prevailed. Freshman Erika Swoboda, who was called up to help the short-handed Warhawks over spring break, provided a great deal of it. The freshman stunned Homestead with two home runs to center.
Anderson said he was essentially giving Swoboda a one-week trial.
"I don't think she's going anywhere now," he said.
Especially after she launched a two-run homer in the sixth, just three batters before Johnson knocked her game-ender out of the park.
Randrup gave up doubles in each of the first two innings, but then allowed just one more hit the rest of the way. She had eight strikeouts.
Junior outfielder Katie Aumann helped break open the game with a three-run double in the third.
In other action, Schroder pitched a four-hit, 2-0 shutout at visiting Port Washington on April 23.
Steven L. Tietz can be reached at (262) 446-6619.
THURSDAY, APRIL 30: 4:15 p.m.; vs.
SATURDAY, MAY 2: 2 p.m.; Germantown Invitational
TUESDAY, MAY 5: 4:15 p.m.; at Milwaukee Lutheran
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