TREYNOR, Iowa — While Sydni Huisman may not have had her best stuff early on, she got stronger as the game went on. And that was bad news for Sioux Center.
Huisman, who entered Friday leading the state with 344 strikeouts, allowed four hits while striking out nine to lead Treynor to an 8-0 win in the Class 3-A Region 7 semifinal.
The Cardinals will host Southeast Valley, 4-3 walk-off winners over Carroll Kuemper in the other semifinal, Monday for the regional title.
Huisman retired the last 10 batters she faced and 13 of the final 14 to improve to 28-2.
Huisman credited her defense after the game.
“Our defense was really good tonight,” she said. “We really executed. We got the outs when we needed to get the outs and held them to zero runs. And that’s how you win.”
The Warriors were able to make contact off Huisman and put together a threat in the first inning.
Annie Bullock and Chloe Harskamp singled, but Huisman struck out Lainey Pomrenke to get out of the jam.
Treynor coach Kara Huisman said she didn’t sense Sydni was dominating early, like she has so many times this season.
“She wasn’t as sharp as she has been, and they swing the bats well,” the coach said. “We knew coming in that if she brought the ball and they hit ground balls, we needed to play good defense. And that’s exactly what they did.”
Sioux Center coach Kara Schmalbeck said that despite the shutout, her team fought at the plate and on the mound.
Eighth-grader Tatum Schmalbeck pitched a complete game.
“(Huisman) is a really, really good pitcher, and it’s fun for our eighth-grader to see someone like that and see what it takes,” the coach said. “We actually were blessed to have the opportunity to watch her.
“She averages about two strikeouts an inning, and we could have walked in and three-up three-down each inning. And I felt like we had good at-bats, and our girls battled and fouled them off a lot.”
Treynor’s Konnor Sudmann reached third base with one out in the bottom of the first inning and tried to score on Stella Umphreys’ grounder to third. But third baseman Dana Den Herder threw Sudmann out at the plate to keep the game scoreless.
The Cardinals (29-3) went on to load the bases in the frame with two outs, and Reagan Darrah delivered with a two-run single to put Treynor on top.
The Cardinals added three more in the second on a two-run single by Umphreys and a hit by Huisman to make it 5-0.
Schmalbeck had a two-out triple for the Warriors (18-14) in the fourth inning, but Sioux Center was unable to get her home.
Umphreys put the Cardinals ahead 6-0 in the fourth inning with a grounder to short that plated Kayla Chapman.
Sioux Center (18-14) 000 000 0—0 4 2
At Treynor (29-3) 230 111 x—8 11 1
In the Class 2-A, Region 3 semifinals, Mount Ayr beat Underwood 4-1 and West Monona topped AHSTW 14-5.
The winners advanced to Monday’s regional final.