Seven innings, two wins.

The Class B No. 3-rated Northwest softball team has proven to be efficient early this season.

In Thursday’s home opener, the Vikings needed just four innings to down Lexington 10-0. That’s one more inning than it took to win Monday’s opener at Central City.

"I thought we played pretty well," Northwest coach Dave Prokesh said. "There’s always a few things that you’d like to see us do better, but for the most part we were pretty sound defensively.

"I thought our pitchers kept the ball where we needed it for the most part, and we did a nice job of putting the bat on the ball. We really can’t complain."

Ashley Scherer scored the first run of the game on a passed ball with one out in the bottom of the first. The Vikings’ next nine runs all came with two outs.

"We got some key hits, and that’s a good sign for down the road," Prokesh said. "We got a little help from them. They missed some plays that they probably typically would make. But I guess you take advantage of that when you get it, and we did."

The Minutemaids (0-4) committed four errors which led to four unearned runs.

Scherer went 2-for-3 with two runs while also picking up the win. She gave up three hits with two strikeouts in three innings. Alyssa Vanosdall pitched a 1-2-3 fourth inning.

Maddi Jussel and Laura Springer each had a two-run single.

Northwest will face much tougher competition on Saturday in the Lincoln Public Schools Tournament.

The Vikings are in a pool with Class B No. 5 Beatrice and Class A teams Kearney and Lincoln Northeast.

"We got into the tournament for the first time last year, and it got rained out," Prokesh said. "We’re looking forward to getting down there and locking horns with some Class A teams and of course Beatrice is a perennial power.

"It’ll be a measuring stick for us. We’ll find out where we’re at, that’s for sure."

An experienced Vikings team with high expectations must match up against tough competition to get better, Prokesh said.

"We need (tough games)," he said. "You need good teams to put pressure on you offensively. You need to see good defensive teams.

"You’ve got to see good pitching. You’ll see it down the road at some point and time if you do the things we want to do. So the sooner you see it, the better you are."

Lexington (0-4) .............. 000 0—0 3 4

Northwest (2-0)............. 442 x—10 6 0

WP—Scherer. LP—Schultze.

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