Thomas pulls double duty for Leafs

Chris Steele
Jane Thomas, left, earned a win in the sophomore softball game for the Lady Leafs and notched a save in the varsity game against Ottawa.

The Geneseo softball team locked down their first conference win against Ottawa and defeated two top-tier teams from the Western Big 6.

Geneseo at Moline

The Lady Leafs used a six-run third inning to top the Maroons 11-5 at Bob Seitz Field on April 13.

Geneseo trailed 3-0 going into the bottom of the third inning, the Leafs’ Rachel Varland hit a three- run double to tie the game.

Two batters later, Delaney Ostrowski knocked in Varland with a single to give Geneseo the lead.

The Leafs’ Andrea Wagoner knocked in two runs on a single to cap the scoring binge.

After Moline scored three runs in the fourth inning to re-tie the game, Geneseo regained the lead in the fifth with RBIs from Taylor Riffe and a sacrifice fly from Wagoner.

The Leafs added a cushion in the sixth, as Varland hit a two-run double and Moline made errors in the field that led to another Geneseo run.

In her return to the starting lineup, Maddy Shoemaker finished with a pair of hits for the Leafs.

McKinsey Walters and Allison Yager each notched two hits for Geneseo.

The Maroons had five errors in the game, and Geneseo scored four unearned runs.

The Leafs’ Jane Thomas picked up the win in the circle.

Ottawa at Geneseo

The Leafs continued to build their winning streak defeating Ottawa 3-1 at the JF Edwards Complex on April 14.

Geneseo nabbed their first win in the Northern Illinois Big 12 Conference with two stellar performances in the circle from Wagoner and Thomas.

The duo combined to work around five hits and allow just one run in the game.

A sophomore, Thomas had an unconventional outing.

The Leafs’ pitcher earned the win in the sophomore game, and entered the varsity game to close out the conference victory.

Thomas has been in the situation a few times the past two seasons, and she thinks the experience gives her an edge.

“If anything it made me stronger,” said Thomas of pitching in the sophomore game. “It gave me real in game situations to draw from.”

Thomas played in the sophomore game to give her a chance to get more at bats and help Geneseo become an even more versatile team.

Adding to Geneseo’s depth was the return of Shoemaker who has been out with an arm injury since the end of March.

A four-year starter, Shoemaker has been cleared to return to the field and played with the same form which made her an All-Conference NIB 12 player.

“It can be a little scary,” said Shoemaker of making hard throws in game situations. “I still have confidence in myself and in my arm.”

Geneseo took the lead against Ottawa by scoring two runs in the second inning.

The Leafs’ Riffe hit an RBI single, and Briley Koberlein drove in a run on a sacrifice fly.

Ostrowski added a run for Geneseo in the fourth inning after Ottawa committed an error.

Wagoner earned her fifth win of the season allowing four hits in five plus innings.

After starting the conference season with a pair of losses, Geneseo nabbed a much needed win to keep them in the conference race.

“We know we are going to need some help,” Geneseo coach Pat Mitchell said. “You want to put yourself in the race so once you get to regionals you understand what it feel like to be in big games.”

Galesburg at Geneseo

The Lady Leafs topped Galesburg 3-0 on Pack the Park Night at the JF Edwards Complex on April 18.

Playing a potential regional opponent in the Silver Streaks, Geneseo performed like a post season team with Wagoner on the mound.

Wagoner pitched five and two-thirds shutout innings to earn the victory, allowing just three hits with six strikeouts.

Thomas cinched the win not allowing a hit while notching the save.

Geneseo’s Breanna Jones put a run on the board in the second inning, with an RBI double.

In the sixth inning, Geneseo’s Shoemaker and Jasmine McCormick drove in runs take a 3-0 lead.

Jones finished with three hits, and McCormick had a pair of hits.

Walters and Ostrowski each hit a pair of singles, and Koberlein smacked a double.