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Softball notes: Augusta offense firing on all cylinders

Published April 19 at 4:26 p.m. | Last updated April 19 at 4:27 p.m.

If opposing softball coaches rack their brains trying to figure out which player to pitch to and which player to pitch around in the Augusta lineup, well, good luck.

Augusta (7-1) has five hitters with home runs, including three by Casady Marlnee and two from Brooke Eberhardt. Seven players are hitting .407 or above.

It’s an intimidating lineup to be sure.

“Who do you pitch to?” asked Augusta coach Shane Steinkamp, whose team finished second in Class 4A in 2013. “How do you pitch to these kids? In 224 at-bats, we’ve struck out (15) times. We’re putting the ball in play, and we have 30 stolen bases in eight games.

“There’s a lot of pressure we put on people offensively, putting a lot of pressure on their defense and pitching staff. When they make a mistake, we’re able to hurt them with it.”

Augusta also has 25 doubles, including five apiece from Kylie Wesbrooks and Marlnee.

“We talk more strategy as hitters this year,” Steinkamp said. “They know what pitch they’re looking for early in the count, and when they get the pitch, what they’re going to do with it.”

While Augusta’s hitting has been on fire, Steinkamp said his team’s success starts on the mound with Megan Hayes, Brooke Eberhardt and Nicole Becker. Eberhardt, a 2013 All-Metro selection, and Becker rotate starts in Game 2.

Hayes, the Game 1 starter, has a 2.06 ERA and has struck out 16, while Eberhardt has a 3.27 ERA, Becker 3.82.

Trinity opens stadium — Months after opening its football field, Trinity has opened its new softball stadium.

“They’re doing the finishing touches over the next couple weeks,” Trinity athletic director Steve Miller said. “We are right there, nearly finished. The bullpen isn’t quite fenced in, but we can play a game on it.”

Trinity will dedicate the field between games on Monday against visiting Douglass. The first game starts at 3 p.m. because Trinity does not have lights.

The dedication was supposed to be on April 14, but the game was postponed due to rain.

Trinity had issues when it dedicated its football stadium in October when a major storm rolled through delaying the start of the game by more than an hour.

Reach Joanna Chadwick at 316-268-6270 or jchadwick@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her on Twitter: @joannachadwick.