Good time to shine

Kelm silences West Geauga; Lakeview rolls

Tribune Chronicle / Robert Hayes Cait Kelm delivers a pitch against the West Geauga Wolverines in a 4-0 win for Lakeview on Thursday in Cortland. Kelm had 15 strikeouts to lead the Bulldogs to a Division III district semifinal.

CORTLAND — Cait Kelm of Lakeview High School was stellar Thursday as she tossed a one-hit shutout to help guide her team to a 4-0 victory over West Geauga in a Division II Jefferson Sectional bracket final.

“My curveball was spinning really good, and my changeup, that was really good too,” Kelm said.

Kelm was composed in the circle throughout the whole afternoon.

“I was comfortable from the beginning because I know they have my back, no matter what.”

She also recorded 15 strikeouts. Bulldogs coach Nate Schick was proud of his starter.

Tribune Chronicle / Robert Hayes Lakeview’s Raegan Schick scampers toward home plate during a passed ball. She scored the first of Lakeview's four runs in the fourth inning during the Bulldogs’ 4-0 win.

“It was the best game she pitched all year,” he said. “It was a good time for it. She’s a senior, this was her last game on this field, it’s a special day for her. She really stepped it up against a good West Geauga team.”

There wasn’t a whole lot of offense on the afternoon, as the only scoring occurred in the bottom of the fourth inning, when Lakeview (11-13) plated four runs on two passed balls and two errors.

Schick knew his team was able to have a better read at the plate the second time through the lineup.

“We’ve been playing well lately, and we’ve been winning some 12-2 games, some higher scoring games,” he said. “Eventually we’re going to get in that situation where we’re going have to be gritty and battle to score some runs. The girls stepped it up. We knew the next time through, the second time in the order, we were going to really do some damage.”

One of the stars of the game offensively for Lakeview was Raegan Schick, who went 2-for-3 with two singles and a run scored. Raegan Schick’s patience at the plate paid off.

“I was just seeing the ball really well off of the pitcher,” she said. “At first I had some trouble seeing a release point, but after that, I felt good.”

Lakeview advances on to the district final to play Jefferson on Tuesday, a team they split the season series with this year.

Nate Schick looks forward to facing Jefferson again.

“It’s going to be a good matchup because our girls know that we can go up there, and it’s going to be on their home field in the districts, but we won up there three weeks ago,” he said. “We’re going to be able to go up there with confidence, and that’s the key at this point in the season.”

Kelm agreed with her coach.

“I feel very confident against them,” she said. “We put up 17 hits against them last time, so I feel pretty confident in our abilities.”