Top-ranked Benton wins battle of Bobcats, 1-0

VAN HORNE – Benton Community got all it needed in the first inning.

The Class 3A No. 1-ranked Bobcats got a four-hit shutout from Amber Fiser and scored the game’s only run with two of their three hits in the bottom of the first, fighting off a stiff challenge from Marshalltown for a 1-0 victory on Tuesday night.

Marshalltown’s Cassidy Blackford surrendered three hits, three walks and struck out six in the loss. She also had half of the visiting Bobcats’ four singles in the team’s eighth shutout loss this season.

Savannah Halstead singled and scored on Alyssa Wiebel’s double in Benton’s first at-bat, and that was all Fiser needed. She struck out 11 and walked one in the victory.

Taylor Busta had the only other hit for Benton (29-4), which won its 20th straight.

Blackford finished 2-for-3 with a stolen base for Marshalltown (3-22), which suffered its 11th consecutive loss. Kaley Mead and Lexi McKown added singles for MHS.

Marshalltown is back on the road tonight with a doubleheader at Southeast Polk.