ROXANA — The Roxana Shells softball team played host to the Alton Redbirds and handed them their first loss of the season in a 4-0 non-conference match-up on Monday.
The Shells welcomed the warm temperatures as they improved to 2-4, while the Birds slipped to 3-1.
Roxana senior Andrea Lawson looked good in the circle, tossing a one-hitter, fanning five and walking one.
"We've been working hard in practice and you want to see results," Shells' head coach Mike Arbuthnot said. "For the most part we played mistake-free ball and we got our bunts down. We were able to get a couple big key hits that made a difference for us. I all starts in the circle and Andrea Lawson, our right-hander, really threw a great game. She was able to keep Alton off stride. This is just a nice win."
Roxana was able to scratch across a run in the bottom of the first off of AHS starter Brittany Roady. Hannah Rexford picked up a hit and came around to score on an Alton error to push the Shells in front 1-0.
"We were able to go to Pana on Saturday and pick up our first conference win," Roxana head coach Mike Arbuthnot said. "It's nice to come home and get our first non-conference win of the season against a nice ball club like Alton. Coach Dan Carter does a good job with his team and they always play hard and make it a good game."
Alton freshman Rachel McCoy picked up the lone hit for the Birds in the top of the third, but was later caught attempting to steal and Roxana got out of the inning unscathed.
"We just struggled on offense today," Alton head coach Dan Carter said. "We struggled at the plate and Lawson did a nice job keeping us off balance. We have to make adjustments. If you don't adjust the first time through, you've got to make them the second and we didn't."
The score remained 1-0 until the Shells doubled their lead in the bottom of the fourth inning. Hannah Rexford reached on a base hit and found her way to third base on a bunt by Abby Palen. Cindy Scroggins earned the RBI on a base hit to center field to send Rexford home and make it a 2-0.
The Shells sealed the game in the sixth inning when Elizabeth Rexford knocked a double to left center field to put a runner in scoring position. Hannah Rexford joined her older sister with a base hit, but Alton was able to hold up Elizabeth to put runners on first and second. The Rexford sisters both advanced to second and third on a double steal and Palen sent both home on a two-run base hit to propel the Shells ahead 4-0.
The Redbirds attempted to get a rally going in the seventh inning with Roady making it to first after being hit by a pitch. Bronte Fencel reached and advanced Roady to second on an error in center field, but the effort was cut short when Lawson struck out the next two batters and threw Savannah Fisher at first base to end the game.
The Shells board the bus to face off with Staunton at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday in South Central Conference action, while the Redbirds stay home to welcome Belleville East at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday to open the Southwestern Conference docket.