PREP SOFTBALL: Van Dyke homers twice to lead Dutchmen by LHS 8-2MARSHALL — If Reggie Jackson is Mr. October then Edgerton/Southwest Christian’s Breana Van Dyke is Ms. May.
MARSHALL — If Reggie Jackson is Mr. October then Edgerton/Southwest Christian’s Breana Van Dyke is Ms. May.
Van Dyke has hit three homers in the postseason for the Flying Dutchmen, including two in Tuesday’s elimination game versus Lakeview to lead E/SWC to an 8-2 victory in Section 3A playoff softball action. Van Dyke also struck out 10 and gave up two earned runs in seven innings of work on the mound to get the victory.
“Not only did she pitch a good game, but she got that home run for us and she got us over the hump,” E/SWC coach Andrew Fleischman said.
The hump E/SWC (19-4) was unable to get over early on in the contest was getting the first run across the plate. A leadoff double by Sarah Post was squandered in the top of the first inning and Brittani Roskamp was left in scoring position in the top of the second inning. The third inning had a strange case of déjà vu for the Flying Dutchmen.
Amanda Schaap started the inning with a walk and stole second and Post reached on a fielder’s choice with Schaap moving to third. Back-to-back strikeouts made the scene all too familiar for E/SWC. Until Van Dyke connected on a two-out three-run homer to center to put the Flying Dutchmen up 3-0. And E/SWC would never give up the lead from there.
“This is my field,” Van Dyke said. “I always play good on this field. My goal at the plate was to just get a hit and get the girls in, but a home run is better. For some reason, high pitches I just always hit home runs.
“I’ve been waiting all season to get (home runs). Playoffs is the only time I’ve hit home runs. Feels good to finally get them.”
It was a play in the inning before, which was a big factor in the momentum. With Lakeview’s Sarah Berg on third, Van Dyke threw a pitch that got away from E/SWC catcher Kameron Kroh. Kroh left no hesitation, popping out of her stance, scooping the bounce back to her and dishing the ball to Van Dyke, who was in perfect position to tag Berg out and keep the game scoreless.
“That was big,” Fleischman said. “(Kroh) snapped out of there good and Breana covered well and got the tag where we wanted.
“It was very textbook and all the credit goes to those two. They executed the play, but it was big for momentum. It prevented us from getting down early.”
Van Dyke’s bomb kept the momentum with E/SWC and the Flying Dutchmen never looked back.
Déjà vu struck again the very next inning.
In the bottom of the third, Kroh and Van Dyke (2-for-3, five RBIs, two runs) nailed a runner at the plate a second time on a wild pitch to end the inning. Once again, the Flying Dutchmen kept the momentum with the bats, scoring five runs in the top of the fourth.
“I was just thinking I had to get it to Breana,” Kroh said. “It was a pretty good bounce.
“It really got us going.”
Post (2-for-4, two RBIs, two runs) hit a two-run single, Tara Dekam (1-for-3, RBI, run) ripped an RBI single and Van Dyke struck again with two outs, sending a rocket to center for a two-run homer to make it 8-0.
“Earlier we got runners on and we couldn’t get the big hit when we needed it,” Fleischman said. “Then, all of a sudden, we got it going.
“I thought we played a really good game all around. It was one of our better games of the year.”
Van Dyke gave up four hits and two walks. Her only blemish were solo homers to Berg and Lyndsey Peterson.
“Today was pretty much dominated,” Van Dyke said. “We are facing a good pitcher and a good lineup (Thursday), so we have to be ready to play and ready to bat.”
E/SWC will take on undefeated Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg (22-0) Thursday back at Marshall. Since the Flying Dutchmen lost to K-M-S 4-0 Saturday, they will have to beat K-M-S twice to clinch a section championship and move to state.
“They have to keep playing,” Fleischman said. “We just have to build on it.
“K-M-S is a good team. We play like we did today and we’re going to be very competitive. We just have to take it inning by inning. We just have to play 21 outs.”
R H E
EHS 003 500 0 — 8 9 1
LHS 000 101 0 — 2 4 3
Daily Globe Sports Editor Chris Murphy may be reached at 376-7328.