VAN WERT — The Van Wert Lady Cougars faced off against the Ottawa-Glandorf Lady Titans on Thursday night at Jubilee Park for Western Buckeye League softball action. The Lady Cougars flexed their muscles with three extra bases hits –all of the run scoring variety — as Van Wert picked up the 6-4 victory.

Van Wert got two base knocks in the bottom of the first from Laine Spoor and Lauren Moore. Unfortunately for the Lady Cougars a lineout to second baseman Rachel Warnecke started a double play and later on Warnecke ground ball turned into the final out of the first.

The Lady Titans got a two out rally as Cassie Schroeder and Hannah Hiegal singled back up the middle to put two runners on with two outs. The Van Wert pitcher, Spoor, was able to induce a fly out to center fielder Peyton Okuly for the final out.

The Lady Cougars just missed a big inning in the bottom of the third as Allie Halle and Olivia Kline reached based to start the frame, but back-to-back outs at third, one via a force out and one from runner’s interference, put a damper on the Van Wert scoring attempt.

The bottom of the fourth was huge for Van Wert, as the Lady Cougars pushed across five runs in the frame. Hall got it all started with an RBI double to plate the first Van Wert run. The Lady Cougars got big hits from Katie Coplin to score one run and Moore, who doubled, to plate two runs.

“We had a couple errors that lead to some runs in that fourth inning. We just need to continue to work defensively to get better in situation like that. We can play that frame smarter and hopefully get out of it with fewer runs scored,” Titan head coach Keith Fisher said. “We have played well overall beside a couple mistakes the last three games but we need to continue to get better as a team.”

O-G got two runs back in the top of the fifth as Hiegal walked to start the frame, and, later, Masie Utrup reached on a throwing error. Both Hiegal and Utrup scored on a base hit by Leanna Zynda to cut the Van Wert lead to 5-2.

The Lady Cougars’ faithful got a little jolt in the bottom of the fifth as, with one out, catcher Katie Dickson absolutely tattooed a ball to dead center field and over the wall for a solo homer. The blast brought the Van Wert crowd and Dickson’s teammates to their feet, 6-2 Van Wert.

“We were getting base runners on early but were unable to advance anyone, and we have been struggling getting that leadoff runner on base,” Van Wert head coach Greg Steinecker said. “We got our timing down pretty well today, and we started to make some contact. Plus, [Ottawa-Glandorf] had some mental mistakes that helped out a little bit.”

O-G fought back in the top of the seventh, as, with two outs, Warnecke doubled to put one runner on. Zynda took a 2-0 count and turned on a pitch and deposited the ball over the center field fence for a two-run homer to cut the Van Wert advantage to 6-4.

Spoor got the next O-G batter to ground out to Hall, who ended the game with a strong throw to first baseman Alli Kennedy.

“Lanie is continuing to get stronger every inning she is out on the rubber,” Steinecker said. “She came in relief on Tuesday, and she has been able to keep her pitch count down in the 14 to 15 range [per inning]. She has been relying on her defense to get outs, and that has really helped out.”

The Lady Cougars improve to 3-4 on the year and 2-2 in the WBL as the Lady Titans drop to 1-6 and 0-3 in the WBL.