Lady Hounds rebound with win over New London


Girls get 20th win of the year behind Rehm's shutout


NEW LONDON - Junior Neeley Rehm went seven innings, allowing just three hits and striking out six, as Fort Madison earned its 20th softball win of the year Wednesday at New London in a non-conference matchup

The Lady Hounds (20-12) got on the board quickly when Emily Steffensmeier hit a one-out single in the top of the first, swiped second, and then came around to score on Erika Kruse's single to left for a 1-0 lead.

Rehm gave up one of her hits in the bottom of the first when Ashlyn McSorley doubled to deep left, but Rehm got a pop-out and a ground out to end the threat, leaving McSorley stranded.

Neither team would score in the second inning, but Fort Madison would put up two runs in the top of the third.

Elle Ruble walked to start the inning and Taylor Johnson got hit by a Kaitlyn Lee pitch to two on with no outs. A pop-out to second held everyone, but Steffensmeier followed with her second hit of the game, driving in both Ruble and Johnson for a 3-0 lead.

The Lady Hounds would put up five more in the fourth to put the game out of reach. Lauryn Helmick singled to open the frame. She would move around on a stolen base and passed ball before McKenna Cashman sent a ball to center allowing Helmick to tag and score.

Ruble got hit with a pitch and Johnson walked before Logan Johnson lined a single to left scoring Ruble. An error on the play allowed Taylor Johnson to move to third and Logan Johnson to advance into scoring position. Steffensmeier would continue her hot day at the plate with another, scoring Johnson and Johnson.

Then Erika hit her Southeast Conference-leading 11th home run of the year on the first pitch she saw to set the final score at 8-0. Rehm would allow just one base runner on a single in the bottom of the 7th in sealing the win.

Steffensmeier led the Lady Hounds offensively going 3-4 with 4 RBIs and a run scored, accounting for five of the Hounds' eight runs.

Kruse was 2-4 with an RBI and a run scored off the dinger. The junior is also first in the conference in RBIs with 47 on the year and she's fifth in the conference in hitting with a .412 average. Whaley leads the conference in doubles with 11 and Steffensmeier is first in the field with a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage from centerfield.

Logan Johnson, Lexi Whaley, Rehm, and Helmick had the other hits for Fort Madison.

Fort Madison (16-2 in the Southeast) has a doubleheader tonight in Burlington. If the Hounds win either of the two, they will be the outright conference champions. Fairfield currently stands at 13-4 with three conference games remaining, including a makeup game. If they win all three and Fort Madison would lose both to the Grayhounds, the two would share the Southeast title.

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