Sabers sweep Cards, stay unbeaten

MANISTEE — Amber Robke gave up a hit in the first inning of her start Monday afternoon.

From there, the Manistee Catholic Central senior faced the minimum number of batters.

Robke’s dominant performance set the tone for the Sabers, who recorded a West Michigan D League sweep against Mason County Eastern. MCC won the opener 6-0 and the second game 12-2 by mercy rule in five innings to stay unbeaten.

Manistee Catholic Central shortstop Hannah Janicki steps on second and throws to first to complete a 6-3 double play during the first game of Monday’s doubleheader against Mason County Eastern. (Matt Wenzel/News Advocate)

Manistee Catholic Central shortstop Hannah Janicki steps on second and throws to first to complete a 6-3 double play during the first game of Monday’s doubleheader against Mason County Eastern. (Matt Wenzel/News Advocate)

“We’re doing all right I guess,” said first-year MCC coach Everett McLinden. “These girls are excellent ballplayers.”

Robke was locked in a pitchers’ duel with MCE’s Tammy Campbell before the Sabers (8-0, 8-0 WMD) scored three in the fourth and three in the fifth against the Cardinals (4-8, 4-2 WMD). Robke allowed just one hit and no walks while striking out five.

“You can tell she’s a veteran out there,” McLinden said of Robke. “She’s cool, she’s calm.”

With runners on second and third and no outs in the fourth, MCC’s Hannah Janicki ripped a two-run triple to center field and Molly McLinden followed with an RBI single.

MCC added three in the fifth on walks, passed balls and a RBI triple for Alysha Heck.

Down to the final three outs, Robke retired the Cardinals quickly on a strikeout and pair of groundouts.

“I trust my defense a lot,” Robke said. “They’re always there to back me up. I’m pretty confident in them.”

Shelby Papes earned the victory in the second game after allowing just two hits and no walks while striking out four.

MCC broke through with three runs in the third before MCE answered with two in the bottom of the inning. The Sabers scored four in the fourth and added five in the fifth.

Janicki led the Sabers with three hits, including an inside-the-park homer, Robke finished 3-for-4, Heck 2-for-3 with an RBI and Courtney Sorenson had a hit and four RBIs.

“It rolled right into the second game,” Everett McLinden said of the offense. “The girls hit very well.”

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