Prep Softball

Canton powers way past Gallatin into quarterfinals

By Herald-Whig
Posted: Oct. 12, 2017 9:25 am Updated: Oct. 12, 2017 12:12 pm

CANTON, Mo. -- Abbey Hultz wasn't sure where her flyball to left field was going to land.

That's why the Canton third baseman was shocked to see the softball end up on the other side of the fence.

"I just had my timing and hit it," said Hultz, the seventh hitter in Canton's batting order. "I didn't really even know it was a home run at the beginning."

It jolted life into the Canton lineup.

Hultz's two-run homer broke a scoreless tie in the top of the fourth inning, and the Tigers erupted for 17 runs in the final three frames for a 17-6 victory over Gallatin in Wednesday's Class 1 sectional at the Cotton Bowl.

Canton (18-5) awaits the winner of the Salisbury-Atlanta sectional in Saturday's quarterfinal. The Salisbury-Atlanta matchup was postponed until Thursday due to wet field conditions.

"(Hultz) performing at the bottom of the lineup really changed our attitude," Canton coach Jonathan Bastian said. "That was huge for us."

Prior to Hultz's home run, Canton had just two hits against Gallatin's Karley Salmon.

Afterward, Canton had 17 hits, including seven doubles and two more home runs.

Shortstop Laken Hugenberg had both of those homers. The first was a two-run home run that hit off the scoreboard in left field in the fifth inning and pushed Canton's lead to 4-0. She smacked her second homer -- another two-run shot -- in the sixth as the Tigers blew the game open with a nine-run frame.

Hunter Collins added a bases-clearing double in the sixth against the Bulldogs (10-15).

"Any other game I think we would have let up a little bit," said Hugenberg, who finished with four RBIs. "But we're trying to go for gold here. We kind of treated it like batting practice and made sure we got our swings down."

It led to 19 hits total.

Hultz had three hits and drove in four runs. Riley Marshall had three hits with two RBIs, while Tegan Burbridge had two hits and two RBIs.

"I was waiting for us to explode like that and could feel we wanted to," Bastian said. "Finally we made adjustments and were a lot more confident at that plate. It was huge to just pour it on like that when they figured it out."

It provided more than enough run support for Canton right-hander Olivia Jarvis, who threw 5 1/3 innings. She allowed six runs on eight hits while striking out three and walking five.

Jarvis had a double and scored twice, while Abby Jarvis had two hits and scored three times.

"Tonight felt like our freshman and sophomore years when we went to state," Hugenberg said. "We had such a fun time there, and we want to get back there."

 

Canton 17, Gallatin 6

Canton 000 269--17 19 2

Gallatin 000 024--6 8 3

O. Jarvis, Hultz (6) and Collins; Salmon, Baker (5), Salmon (6) and Maxwell. WP--O. Jarvis. LP--Salmon. 2B--Canton 7 (Hultz 2, Marhsall 2, Caldwell, O. Jarvis, A. Jarvis), Gallatin 2 (Michael, Shubert). HR--Canton 3 (Hugenberg 2, Hultz).

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