ELYRIA — A little cold — OK, a lot of cold — wasn’t going to ruin the home opener for the Elyria Pioneers.
Despite frigid conditions, the Elyria bats were as hot as can be Monday afternoon.
The Pioneers got contributions all around as they cruised to a 12-0 rout of Shaker Heights in a game shortened to five innings due to the mercy rule.
Elyria (4-1, 1-0) showed patience and aggression at the plate, churning out 11 hits while also walking 11 times.
“We just try to make things happen and put the ball in play,” coach Ken Fenik said. “We still have a lot of young kids in different positions but they’re starting to gel together and we’re happy with where they are at right now.”
After a quiet first inning, the offense exploded in the second, putting up seven runs.
All of them came with two outs, as it seemed like a pitchers duel was brewing before the offense suddenly erupted.
Keearah Williams got things started with a booming RBI triple that scored Cassie Miller. The next eight batters proceeded to reach base, as the rally seemed like it would never end.
Maycee Godbolt, who had two hits and reached base three times, had an RBI single in the middle of the rally.
“I was just looking to make contact and it’s always nice to get a good hit,” Godbolt said. “We do a good job of feeding off each other and if someone gets down it helps pick them up.”
While the offense was dominating, the pitching and defense weren’t far behind.
Starter Isabella St. Peters and Madison Olszewski combined for a four-hit shutout, striking out eight while walking just two.
“It was so cold for them but both pitchers did a nice job and it’s important to get both of them some innings,” Fenik said. “When it’s that cold you don’t get the same type of feel on the ball, so I’m happy, I’ll take this outcome.”
Elyria scored four more runs in the third inning, pushing the lead to 11-0. Six straight batters reached on singles.
Senior April Howser kept the streak going when she picked up an RBI single after falling behind in the count 0-2.
“I grounded out in my first at-bat so I knew I had to shorten up my swing and I took an outside pitch up the middle,” Howser said. “It’s really fun when you do it as a team and everyone gets involved. Makes it feel special.”
Shaker Heights never posed much of a threat, as only three runners reached second base.
It was Elyria’s first game in Ohio and in the Greater Cleveland Conference after starting the season on a four-game trip.
Every player in Elyria’s lineup reached base, and eight scored.
“It’s never that fun swinging in the cold but it’s something you have to do when you play softball, so you just have to suck it up and enjoy it,” Howser said.
Contact Paul Williams at 329-7135 or email@example.com.