|Bluebird Softball, Baseball Teams Record Region Wins at Cooper|
|PHOTO: G. Michael Graham, Fort Thomas Matters. The Highlands baseball team beat Cooper, 5-0 to end a two-game losing streak on Monday.|
The Bluebirds moved to 9-2 in region play. They'd lost to Beechwood and Dixie Heights in region action last week.
"No one really needed to say anything. I think we all knew what we needed to do going forward to get momentum going into the postseason," said Mason Schwalbach, Highlands junior. "I think we did that (Monday)."
Senior Tanner Juett picked up the win to move to 2-0 on the season pitching the first four innings striking out five and walking three. Senior Nolan Turner picked up his third save throwing the final three innings. Turner struck out two and allowed no walks or hits.
Highlands went 10-for-31 at the plate for a .323 average and drew seven walks. Senior Trey Gabbard went 3-for-4 with two RBI and a run scored with senior Bryce Ziegler going 3-for-5 with two RBI. Junior Ethan Kavanagh scored twice and senior Chris Bridwell drew two walks.
Both teams played well defensively making one error each. All five Highlands runs were earned.
"We pitched really well and you have to pitch well to be able to compete," said Jeremy Baioni, Highlands Head Coach. "Tanner Juett and Nolan Turner threw really well. They kept us in the game. We made some plays behind them including a couple double plays. We had some timely hits. We still left a bunch of guys on base (14 to eight for Cooper). But it's a good sign that we're getting on base and putting ourselves in position to score frequently. We just need to knock a few more guys in."
Highlands travels to Bellevue (10-18) to finish 36th District play on Tuesday. Game time is 5 p.m.
Highlands 7, Cooper 6:
Highlands (9-5) held off the Lady Jaguars (14-16) to move to 5-2 in 9th Region play in Union.
The Bluebirds batted .424 (14-for-33) in the victory with two extra-base hits and Cooper batted .322 (10-for-31) with five doubles. Senior Rachel Gabbard went 3-for-4 to lead Highlands with four RBI.
Freshman lead-off Anna Greenwell went 2-for-3 with a triple and three runs scored for Highlands. Sophomore Caroline Class went 3-for-4 with an RBI. Junior Taylar Lorenzen went 2-for-4 with a double and run scored with eighth grader Carly Cramer going 2-for-4 with a run scored.
Freshman Gracie Schosser picked up the win for Highlands to move to 5-1. She struck out three and walked two. Schlosser and eighth grade pitcher Kennedy Baioni had injuries in the preseason. But they have made progress throughout the season.
"Since we both had (preseason) injuries, it took a while to get back to our full potential," Baioni said. "But we've been working every day at practice to build up our arms back to normal so we can throw like we have in the past."
Highlands plays at Newport on Tuesday. Game time is 5:15 p.m.
Highlands 5, Newport Central Catholic 0:
The Bluebirds moved to 15-1 on the season with a convincing victory. Senior Jacob Schuh won second singles on Senior Day.
Highlands plays Beechwood at Tower Park on Tuesday. Game time is 3:45 p.m.