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Panthers blast Blake in 5AA opener

After finishing the regular season with two wins and a loss, the Glencoe-Silver Lake softball team got the postseason off to a ripping start. The Panthers shellacked visiting Blake, 19-4, in the opening round of the Section 5AA Tournament on Monday, May 20.
GSL batted around once in the first inning and twice in the second inning before calling off the dogs in their final turn at bat. The game was called after just three frames due to the mercy rule.
The Panthers, seeded seventh in the sectional bracket, did not take long to assert their dominance in the contest. Playing as the visiting team on its own field, GSL took a prompt 2-0 lead in the top of the first.
Lexi Hansch drew a leadoff walk before Brianna Wraspir launched a two-run homer over the left field wall to stake the Panthers to a lead they did not relinquish.
GSL went all the way through the lineup in the opening frame.
After Hansch made her second trip to the plate, Blake went to a relief pitcher that was briefly able to befuddle the Panther offense with a softball version of Eephus pitch.
The illusion got the Bears out of the first inning trailing 5-0.
However, it worked for only a short while before GSL exploded for 14 runs in the second inning as the Panthers turned the lineup over twice.
Hansch drove in five of those runs and scored once herself after hitting a triple and a double in the frame. A heavy dose of walks and Blake errors also helped turn the game into a rout.
Wraspir, GSL’s starting pitcher, tossed two innings. She allowed two runs in the second inning before being relieved by Taylor Kaczmarek. Kaczmarek allowed two more runs in the third and final inning before the game was called with the Panthers winning by 15 runs.
The victory advanced GSL to a second-round sectional game at Norwood Young America on Tuesday, May 22, after the Chronicle went to press.
The Raiders are seeded second in the section and blasted Minneapolis Patrick Henry 23-0 in their 5AA opener on Monday. NYA defeated the Panthers 11-0 on May 11.