With the Ravens' pair of Western Reserve Conference

By Eric Clutter Record-Courier correspondent Published:

With the Ravens' pair of Western Reserve Conference South Division victories over Kent Roosevelt Friday _ a 7-1 win in the completion of a contest begun on Wednesday and the subsequent 7-6 victory in the regularly-scheduled game _ the Ravens improved to 20-5 overall.

According to Ravenna acting coach Jim Ambler, to the best of everybody's recollection, a Ravenna team had never accomplished such a feat in any prior campaign.

"We can't think of any other time," he said. "This is like six games over what we did last year. I think we only had 13 or 14 last year. We're excited about reaching 20 and we look back and think it could have been more."

On a squad that features only one senior, Ambler emphasizes defense and speed as being two main ingredients to the team's rise _ in addition to the dominating Monica Reedy and a solid, patient hitting attack.

"We picked up a lot of speed this year," he said. "The team is much faster."

In the afternoon's full game, the Ravens (6-4 WRC South) built a 7-1 lead after five innings behind Reedy and then had to hold off a seventh-inning rally by Roosevelt (10-15, 2-8 WRC South).

Kellie Griffith's bases-loaded double with two outs in the final frame brought the Rough Riders to within 7-6. The clutch hit, Griffith's third of the contest, followed up Heather Meyers' RBI hit three batters earlier.

But Reedy calmly got a ground out to end the threat.

Ravenna took command of things with a five-run outburst in the bottom of the fourth.

Audrey Ambler (2 singles), Reedy, Brooke VonStein (2 singles), Morgan Prater (single, double) and Jenna Byerly all hit successive run-scoring singles off Roosevelt's Sarah Durkalski to expand its cushion.

"They are a very good hitting team and I definitely think that's their strength," said Kent Roosevelt coach Amy Larkin. "They do a good job of putting the ball in play."

The lone setback for the Ravens came in the early innings when junior shortstop Jamie Williams sustained an injury to her ankle which forced her to leave the game.

Roosevelt, which touched up Reedy for 11 hits, got on the board first when Erica Miller led off the game with a single, moved her way around to third and scored on Meyers' single.

"We haven't been hitting the ball well and we have come back this last week and have really done a good job of making good hard contact," said Larkin. "I think that is the biggest place where we are improving. We are getting more aggressive and believing in ourselves up there (at the plate)."

Ravenna answered in its half of the frame on Prater's sacrifice fly that scored Ambler.

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