WHEELING - Head Coach Dee Davis has watched her Wheeling Park softball team do most of the things necessary to win this season, such as pick up timely hits, hit the ball for power and get good pitching in the circle.
The one thing that has been missing from the Patriots' arsenal has been the ability to get off the field without making errors, thus letting innings continue.
Thursday night Davis watched her club put everything together in a nice victory over West Virginia Class AAA Section One rival Brooke.
Freshman Kat Donzella provided the power with a pair of two-run doubles, senior Carly Greer limited the Bruins to just four singles in the circle and Park's defense did not commit an error in rolling to a convincing 6-0 blanking of the Bruins on Lisa's Field at the Chamber's I-470 Sports Complex.
"That is the first game we have had zero errors and normally zero errors are going to mean zero runs and I like that," a smiling Davis said.
"Defensively we played a lot better (Thursday).
"We haven't allowed many earned runs this season, but errors and walks have hurt us some. This is the first clean game we have played."
Coach Michael Wagner's 6-8 record Bruins actually had a chance to get off to a good start and take an early lead. Brette Geary began the game with a single, stole second and moved to third on a wild pitch. Lindsay Preston reached on a two-out walk and took second.
However, that threat ended when Greer induced Cassi Camiletti into a ground-out to third to keep the visitors off the board.
The inning got no better for Brooke in the bottom half as the Patriots took advantage of their opportunity and put up the only runs they needed. Kelsey Johnson's lead-off single was followed by Ashleigh Sidon's one-out base hit two batters later. Donzella then followed with a shot deep off the center field fence that brought both around and gave the Patriots a 2-0 lead.
Kaleigh Sidon then reached on a Bruins mistake which allowed Donzella to come around and the Park (8-3) was enjoying a 3-0 upper hand after one.
Neither team was able to mount much offense or plate any runs until Wheeling Park went back to work and pushed across three more in the fifth.
Greer worked a walk on a 3-2 pitch after fouling off seven pitches and courtesy runner Laurel Saunders moved to second when Ashleigh Sidon hustled down the line to beat out an infield single.
Again, Donzella did the brunt of the damage, ripping another two-run double in the right-center field gap and extending the lead to 5-0. Donzella moved to third on Skyler Carrington's single and scored when Morgan Karnell dropped a double over the left fielder's head to complete the scoring.
"We are still searching for timely hits," Wagner commented. "Park has good pitching and when you do get on against them you have to find a way to get hits and get runs home.
"I thought we had a chance to get things going in the first, but we didn't get that hit and then we gave them the momentum in the bottom of the inning. We have got a lot to do to get better."
Geary and Camilitti each had a pair of singles for the Bruins.