Houge tosses gem
If you didn’t know who Mikayla Houge and Collins-Maxwell were before this week, you definitely do now.
Houge, a sophomore, pitched a one-hitter to lead the second-ranked Spartans to the Class 1A state championship game here Wednesday at Rogers Park, 1-0 over No. 9 Lisbon.
Collins-Maxwell (29-1 overall) meets fourth-ranked AGWSR (28-7) on Thursday at 6 p.m. back here on Buena Vista University Diamond in the finals.
Houge, who had a four-hitter with 14 strikeouts in the quarterfinals vs. Newell-Fonda, allowed just a lone single and picked up 10 more strikeouts vs. the Lions (34-9). She also had a double, with leadoff hitter and eighth-grader sister, Alexis, recording the other three hits off Skylar Sadler.
“My spots were a little off, but I moved the ball around well,” Hogue said. “I’ve been in pressure situations before, so I was ready (for the semis). I just wanted to do as best I could for my team.”
Alexis Houge singled to start the first and was plated by Hannah Caple. That lone run would hold up thanks to the pitching of Mikayla Houge and the Collins-Maxwell defense, which did not commit an error.
“The defense played great behind me,” Mikayla Houge said. “We were all locked in right from the first-pitch.”
The Spartans are in their first season as a school and will carry a 13-game win streak into the championship round. That streak includes four postseason shutouts in five games and nine overall during the run.
Mikayla Houge now has 303 strikeouts this season and just 33 walks allowed. The opposition has recorded just 67 hits in 161 innings against her.
“It’s great to give back to the community because we have had tremendous support in all sports this year,” Mikayla Houge said. “It’s great to be able to give (a state title game) back to them.”
For Lisbon, Stacia Hall had the lone hit, with Sadler recording two strikeouts. The Lions will face No. 3 Akron-Westfield (27-5) on Thursday at 5 p.m. on Diamond 2 for third-place.
COLLINS-MAXWELL 1, LISBON 0
Lisbon 000 000 0 — 0 1 1
Collins-Maxwell 100 000 x — 1 4 0
WP–Mikayla Houge (27-1, 7 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 10 K, 0 BB); LP–Skylar Sadler (25-6, 6 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 2 K, 0 BB. 2B–CM: Mikayla Houge. RBI-CM: Hannah Caple.