It was a fairly quick doubleheader by this season’s standards for the Oskaloosa softball team, and they got a split to show for it against one of the top teams in the state in Class 5A.
Indianola got an unbelievable pitching performance from junior righty Sydney Sickles en route to a 1-0 victory in Game 1, and Oskaloosa leaned on senior Alexis Groet and a potent offense for a 7-2 win in Game 2.
The first game lasted just over an hour, as Sickles and Groet battled back and forth in one of the best pitchers’ duels of the season. Indianola, the #9 team in Class 5A, would scratch across a run in the top of the 1st, and no one else would even sniff home plate.
Sickles would strike out 13 Osky batters on just 80 pitches and allow only two hits, both by senior Aubrey Miller. Groet was nearly as good, allowing just three hits and the one run while striking out seven on only 79 pitches.
The complete game was tidy enough that Oskaloosa Coach Jay Harms decided to go with Groet for Game 2 as well. She picked up where she left off, mowing down the Indianola lineup while her offense got going.
In the second inning, 8th grader Kaylee Johnson came through with a two-run home run to give Osky their first lead of the night. The bomb was Johnson’s second homer in as many varsity at bats in her young career.
Things got weird in the 4th, as Oskaloosa was building up a rally. During a successful sacrifice bunt from Johnson, the lights at the softball field went out due to a blown fuse. After about a 20 minute delay, the Osky bats pounced, eventually plating five more runs in the inning to take a 7-0 lead and chase Indianola starter Destiny Lewis from the game.
Groet and the defense took care of the rest. Indianola would plate two runs in the 7th but that would be all Groet would allow in getting her second complete game of the night and helping Osky get a split.
The #3 team in Class 4A now sits at 13-6 overall and 4-5 in the Little Hawkeye Conference. The next battle for the Indians will be on Wednesday night in Pella as Osky plays a single varsity game against Pella Christian, ranked #9 in Class 2A, and among the leaders in the Little Hawkeye. Our broadcast from PC will begin around7:15 for the 7:30 first pitch on 99.5 FM/740 AM KMZN, radiokmzn.com, and the KMZN mobile app.