Mustangs battle tough with 3A foes in Spencer tournament

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

SPENCER - Playing up at least one class in every game, fourth-ranked Newell-Fonda went 2-2 over the weekend as the topped Cherokee (11-0) and Spencer (14-1) and lost to 14th-ranked LeMars (7-3) and 4th-ranked Bishop Heelan (4-2).

The Mustangs totaled 10 hits and six walks in the win over Cherokee Friday, led by Jenna Falline, who was 3-for-4 with a double, a homer, two runs scored and three driven in. Brianna Wells added a run scored and two driven in. Alyssa Henrich was 3-for-3 with three runs scored.

Renee Maneman got the win on the mound, tossing a three-hitter with five strikeouts.

"We did a great job of being patient at the plate and we had a lot of baserunners on base," said Newell-Fonda head coach Dick Jungers. "We left seven stranded and we will need to do a better job of finding ways to get those runners home."

The Mustangs dropped their opener to the Bulldogs Friday, losing a 2-1 lead as they gave up a five-run third inning.

Falline took the loss as she gave up seven earned on nine hits. She walked one and struck out six.

"This was a tough one to lose as we left bases loaded in three separate innings and just could not get the timely hit to bring the needed runs home," said Jungers. "Give them credit they made some nice plays on defense, but we need to learn to embrace those situations and take full advantage."

In their Saturday opener, N-F fell into a 3-0 hole to the Crusaders early and weren't quite able to dig out.

Falline suffered the loss, giving up three earned on 10 hits. She walked two and struck out six. She added a solo homerun, and Maneman drove in one run. Missy Morenz doubled and scored twice.

"This was a tournament type game," said Jungers. "A couple of close plays made the difference in this one. Our girls did a good job of putting the bat on the ball we just needed to string a couple of hits together to score a few more runs. Our defense played very well. Jenna pitched a very nice game for us, but we need to be able to eliminate some of the mental mistakes and to execute on offense to pull games out like this one. Heelan is a very good team, and at the end of the day we just needed a bit more to come on top."

The Mustangs wrapped with the win over the host Tigers, highlighted by seven run outbursts in the second and fifth innings. They totaled eight hits, eight walks and six stolen bases. Falline was 2-for-3 and drove in four in that game, including her third homerun of the tournament, this one a grand slam.

Falline has five homers on the season now, with 28 runs driven in.

Jade Hess was 1-for-3, drove in two and scored two, Maneman was 2-for-4 and scored two, Hailey Falline drove in two, and Morenz and Andrea Christensen added an RBI apiece.

"The girls picked up an impressive win to end out the Spencer tournament. We did a great job of putting the ball in play and Renee pitched a great game for us," said Jungers. "The big second inning was us being patient in the zone and earning a few walks and Jenna Falline hitting a bases clearing grand slam."

Newell-Fonda moves to 22-7 after the weekend. They are at home tonight to take on Storm Lake.

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