Backer comes on strong for NU 18U
NEW ULM – Hannah Backer proved to be a welcome addition to the New Ulm 18U softball team in helping it finish the Windmill Classic on a high note.
After missing two games on Saturday, Backer pitched two solid innings in relief for Tori Botten in New Ulm’s 12-0 victory against Jackson before allowing just two hits in shutting out St. James 8-0 in the final game of the day on Sunday. She had previously taken the loss in the 5-4 contest against Buffalo in the early game.
“She always comes to play, always comes with a smile,” said New Ulm coach Dan Schneider. “I don’t want to throw Tori all weekend, I want to give her a little break … Tori realizes she can relax a little bit with another pitcher, so it’s always good to have [Backer] here.”
Botten was New Ulm’s lone pitcher in Saturday’s 1-1 stand.
Norwood-Young America placed first in the 18U round robin division with a 5-0 record in the two-day competition. New Ulm finished second overall thanks to two different tiebreakers with Worthington and Buffalo, both of which also finished 3-2.
Buffalo placed fourth having allowed the most runs total of the three in the first tiebreaker, then Worthington fell to third because it lost to New Ulm on Saturday.
In the first game of the day, New Ulm fell to Buffalo 5-4. Karlee Pfaff led New Ulm at the plate with a 1-for-3 performance with two RBIs and a double.
In Game 2, the bats came alive for New Ulm. Pfaff reprised her solid first game by going 2-for-3 with a double and three runs scored. Brittany Denn went 2-for-3 with a double and one run scored as well.
The proficiency at the plate for New Ulm continued in Game 3. Of its eight runs scored, seven were driven in by seven different batters – the only run that was not driven in was the first, which was scored by leadoff hitter Ellie Schneider on two wild pitches.
Ellie Schneider finished 2-for-3 with one RBI, two runs scored and a double. Pfaff was 2-for-3 with one RBI and two runs scored.
Anne Schwarz notched an RBI triple and Shaina Widmer followed with an RBI double in the first inning. Botten, Brittany Denn and Kali Denn also recorded an RBI in the game.
“That’s what I would like to keep going and that’s what I expect of this team when I put that lineup out there, I think we should hit the ball,” Dan Schenider said. “So that’s what I was expecting and it’s nice to see.”