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Thursday, August 16, 2018
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Belz, Saladino help Kirkwood roll along

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Kirkwood freshmen Samantha Belz and Shyanne Saladino, commonly known around the ballpark as Sam and Shy, could be the No.1 pitcher for lots of junior college softball teams in Iowa and grab their share of the headlines.

The star pitcher at Kirkwood, however, is freshman Amber Logemann, a strikeout whiz who is being wooed by NCAA Division I teams who are aware of her string of no-hitters, one-hitters and double-digit strikeout performances.

If Logemann is 1A, then Belz is 1B and Saladino is 1C.

"We've got a pretty good staff," Coach Joe Yegge acknowledged Sunday after the seventh-ranked Eagles swept Iowa Lakes in an ICCAC doubleheader. "We're pretty fortunate to have them."

Logemann (10-3) tossed a two-hitter and fanned 13 batters as Kirkwood won the opener, 10-0, in five innings.

Belz and Saladino shared the pitching in the nightcap, just like they did at Davenport West, as the Eagles rolled 15-1 in five innings in the nightcap.

Belz (10-0) pitched the first three innings and got the victory.

Kirkwood (26-3, 12-0) has won 19 straight games with outstanding pitching, robust hitting and excellent defense. logemann, Belz and Saladino all joined the Eagles this season as freshmen.

"They're just doing their thing, just throwing strikes," said Yegge. "I couldn't be any happier with the way they're pitching right now."

Yegge thought he'd have a good pitching staff, but they've exceeded even his high expectations.

"I thought we'd be solid," he said. "I guess I'm shocked that we're this good.

"I knew we'd be good. I didn't think we'd be THIS good. They come out each day ready to play."

Logemann has struck out 156 batters in 74 1/3 innings and sports a miniscule earned run average of 0.76 per seven innings. Belz is not a strikeout artist, but she's collected her fair share with 58 whiffs in 67 1/3 innings and has a 0.83 ERA.

Saladino, who usually pitches in relief, has a 6-0 record with a 2.17 ERA.

Logemann normally starts the first game of a doubleheader, Belz starts the second game and Saladino is ready when needed.

Very few teams have a No.2 pitcher like Belz with her perfect 10-0 mark. After teams get done trying (and failing) to hit against Logemann, they have to deal with her.

Belz doesn't mind being No.2 in the rotation.

"It does kind of take the pressure off," she said. "I come out and pretty much do the same thing (as Logemann). I'm perfectly fine with it."

Belz said she's happy for Logemann and her success.

"It's exciting that she's getting talked to (by Division I colleges) and stuff," said Belz. "A lot of schools are looking into her."

Logemann confirmed she's been talking to Division I coaches, but has not made any plans for the future. She could leave Kirkwood after this season or return next year as a sophomore.

"Amber has been awesome," said Saladino. "Of course there's some competition among all three of us, but it's mellow between us, because we're all after the same goal, to win and go to nationals."

Belz and Saladino cheer for Logemann, then Logemann cheers for them.

"I think the world of Amber," said Saladino. "She's just an awesome pitcher. When you have all three pitching as well as us, Coach doesn't have to think about putting us in."

Belz and Saladino played for Steve Saladino, Shy's father, at Davenport West and helped the Falcons place seventh at the state tournament last year. They did not make a pact to play softball in college together, but it worked out that way.

"I don't know who decided first," said Belz. "We pretty much grew up together and played softball together for many years."

Saladino's four older sisters - Shae, Steph, Sarah and Sam - all played softball at Davenport West. She doesn't care if you call her Shy or Shyanne.

"As long as you get it right," she said with a smile, "because I'm used to all of my sisters' names being put in place of mine. You can see how they get it mixed up."

Hayley Krack hit her 11th home run in the first game Sunday and drove in two runs. Lauren Smith went 2-for-2, Shelby Crist was 2-for-2 and Kelsie Campbell drove in two runs.

Krack belted her 12th homer in the nightcap and Kristen Winter socked her seventh round-tripper of the season. Saladino went 3-for-3 and drove in two runs as the "designated player" before coming in to pitch in the fourth inning.

Krack, Winter, Campbell and Kadarenna Sales all had two RBIs in Game 2.

The Eagles are scheduled to play the Mount Mercy junior varsity at the Mount Mercy field on Monday at 4 p.m.

Kirkwood is headed for a showdown with ninth-ranked DMACC on Wednesday, with both teams 12-0 in the conference. The doubleheader is scheduled to start at 3 p.m. at Kirkwood.

GAME 1

IOWA LAKES (0): Vlasman, 2b, 2 0 0 0, Zollner, 3b, 2 0 1 0, Larson, ss, 1 0 0 0, Holmgren, 1b, 2 0 0 0, Frausto, p, 1 0 1 0, Abrahamson, c, 2 0 0 0, Tendal, dp, 2 0 0 0, Hunt, rf, 2 0 0 0, Hinners, lf, 2 0 0 0, Derflinger, cf, 0 0 0 0. Totals 16 0 2 0.

KIRKWOOD (10): Duffe, ss, 1 1 0 0, Winter, 2b, 3 1 1 1, Tatge, rf, 2 0 0 0, Krack, 3b, 2 2 1 2, Smith, dp, 3 2 2 1, Tutsch, c, 2 2 1 0, Sales, lf, 2 0 0 0, Campbell, 1b, 2 0 1 2, Weber, ph/1b, 1 0 0 0, Crist, cf, 2 2 2 0, Boehm, ph, 1 0 0 0, Logemann, p, 0 0 0 0. Totals 21 10 8 6.

Iowa Lakes    000 00 -  0 2 2
Kirkwood       451 0x - 10 8 0

Frausto and Abrahamson. Logemann and Kutsch. W - Logemann (10-3). L - Frausto. HR - Krack. SB - Crist 2, Duffe.

GAME 2

IOWA LAKES (1): Zollner, 3b, 3 0 1 0, Larson, ss, 2 0 0 0, Holmgren, 1b, 1 0 0 0, Vlasman, 1b, 1 0 0 0, Frausto, p, 2 0 0 0, Abrahamson, c, 2 0 0 0, Derflinger, cf, 1 0 0 0, Hunt, pr, 0 1 0 0, Grengs, rf, 1 0 0 0, Hinners, lf, 2 0 0 0, Gudvangen, 2b, 2 0 1 1. Totals 17 1 2 1.

KIRKWOOD (15): Duffe, ss, 4 2 3 1, Winter, 2b, 4 2 2 2, Tatge, rf, 3 2 1 0, Krack, 3b, 2 2 2 2, Smith, 3b, 1 0 0 0, Saladino, dp/p, 3 2 3 2, Tutsch, c, 1 1 0 0, Compton, ph/c, 0 1 0 0, Sales, lf, 3 2 2 2, Campbell, 2b, 2 0 1 2, Weber, ph/1b, 0 0 0 0, Crist, cf, 2 1 1 1, Listenbee, ph, 1 0 0 0, Belz, p, 0 0 0 0. Totals 26 15 15 12.

Iowa Lakes    000 01 -  1   2 2
Kirkwood       735 0x - 15 15 1

Frausto and Abrahamson. Belz, Saladino (4) and Tutsch, Compton (5). W - Belz (10-0). L - Frausto. 2B - Duffe, Campbell. HR - Winter, Krack. SB - Sales.

 
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