Milan scored four runs in the top of the first inning to lead all the way and defeat Trinity Lutheran 10-4 in varsity softball Monday afternoon on the Cougars’ field.

The Indians, ranked No. 20 in Class 2A, took a 4-0 lead in the top of the first on a 3-run homer by Taryn Cline. Alex Dixon added a two-run homer in the sixth, and leadoff batter Abby Yelton had four hits and scored four runs.

Cougar’s coach Chad Goecker said the Cougars lost to a quality team.

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“They’re good, solid hitters all the way through,” he said. “I’m proud of the girls. They played hard the whole game.”

“We kind of chipped away and chipped away, but we just gave up too much. That doesn’t help anything when you have a walk and then you give up a big hit.”

The Cougars (11-6) scored one run in each of the first four innings.

Savannah Harweger led off the bottom of the first inning with a single. She moved to second on a sacrifice off the bat of Jodi Goecker, then advanced to third on a passed ball. The catcher tried to get her out at third, but the ball went into left field and Harweger scored.

Vidalis Montanez led off the second with a fly ball that hit off the leftfielder’s glove for an error, and she scored on an infield out by Hannah Deaton.

Jaryn Holtsclaw led off the third inning with a walk, and she scored on a suicide squeeze by Gabbard.

With one out in the fourth, Harweger singled and she stole second base and third base and she scored on a ground out by Goecker.

Harweger had a fine game offensively with three hits and a walk, three stolen bases and she scored two runs.

Other Cougars to reach base safely more than once were Holtsclaw with three walks; Amanda Wright with a walk and single, and Montanez on a single and error.

The Cougars had at least one base runner in each of the first six innings as they drew five walks go along with the five hits, while striking out twice.

“I’m really happy with our attitudes and the way we fought and battled,” Coach Goecker said. “(Milan pitcher Lexi Wert) could hit her spots. They were working the outside of the plate a lot, and she was a good, smart pitcher.”

This was the final home game for Cougar seniors Wright, Taylor Russell and Kirstin Hoene.

This game began a busy week for the Cougars against more quality opponents as they will travel to Brown County Wednesday and to Silver Creek Thursday.

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Arv Koontz is a sports correspondent for The (Seymour) Tribune.