Touchet wins two in first day of state softball play

The Indians' Friday wins move them to the winner's side of Saturday play and a chance at the Class 1B state championship.

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With sporadic rain speckling the field, Touchet second baseman Meghan Cantrell gets the out to first base against Thorp in their opening round game at the State 1B Softball Tournament Friday afternoon in Yakima. Touchet won the game.

YAKIMA - They say pitching and defense win championships.

And Touchet had just enough of both Friday to advance to the class 1B state championship game Saturday.

Nicole Brown and Megan Reed led the Indians from inside the circle to beat the Thorp Tigers 6-3 in the quarterfinals and pummel the Cusick Panthers 12-1 in the semifinals.

Brown pitched a complete game, giving up three runs and five hits, striking out 10 and walking four against the Tigers.

"Nicole had a lot of strikeouts," Touchet coach Gary Dorman said. "But she gave up more walks than she usually does. The good thing about Nicole is she can pitch her way out of jams with strikeouts and she did that (Friday)."

The Indian defense made three errors behind Brown.

Reed pitched all of game two, striking out seven in five innings and giving up one run on six walks.

"Megan Reed did a nice job on the mound today," Dorman said. "The other team just couldn't ca tch up to her. They tried to choke up on the bat and slap at the ball just to put it in play."

Touchet made two errors behind Reed.

Touchet 6, Thorp 3

The Indians jumped out to an early two-run lead in the first inning. Reed singled, Zoe Weaver and Cheyenne Kessler each popped up a mile high to the outfield - with both pops resulting in two base errors. Reed scored on Weaver's pop, and Kessler's moved Weaver to third. After a Nicole Brown walk, Taylor Jaspersen RBI'd with a sac fly, scoring Weaver.

The Tigers responded to the Indian's third with two runs of their own, tying the game.

A blooper to right field dropped in for Carolyn Free, a sac bunt moved her to second, a throwing error by the pitcher moved her to third and put a runner on first. A wild pitch scored Free, the next batter was walked, and Kelsey Hutchinson singled with an RBI before the side was retired.

Thorp took the lead in the fifth inning with another run off Jerica Reiners.

The Indians came back with two runs in both the fifth and sixth, to make the final 6-3.

In the fifth, Weaver walked, stole second and scored on the two-base error by the Tigers' third baseman off the bat of Brown. Jaspersen singled to right field, scoring Brown. Jasperson's RBI gave the Indians the lead for the rest of the game.

Insurance runs were added in the sixth inning with a dead-center home run by Reed, a freshman.

"It must be awesome to be a freshman and be hitting like Reed at her first state tournament," Dorman said. "She really slammed that pitch to center."

Weaver added another run with her speed. An infield single, stolen base and two errors by the Tigers allowed Weaver to scamper around the bases and score.

Touchet 12, Cusick 1

Reed nailed her second home run of the tournament on a 2-2 lead-off pitch. The line shot was out to left field and quickly moved the Indians ahead, 1-0. Four Indian walks and one costly Cusick error later, Touchet had three more runs before the first inning was out.

The Indians added a single run in the second inning, when a Weaver line drive scored Cantrell, who reached on a fielder's choice and stole second.

The fifth saw Touchet bring 11 girls to the plate and score seven runs on seven hits. They were aided by two Cusick errors and one walk.

Jaspersen recorded two hits in the inning and an RBI.

Six of the Touchet hits were singles. Reed's two-run double was the exception.

The Panthers scratched out a run in the bottom of the fifth in an attempt to prolong the game past five innings. Bailey Ostrom walked, Haley Adams singled and Ostrom stole third. An error on the Indian right fielder put another runner on and allowed Ostrom to score and Adams to move to second.

Adams stole third, then Reed gave up another walk before the final out was recorded, with the bases full of Panthers.

"We played decent defense in game two," Dorman said "We also showed a lot of patience at the plate. When we did get a fairly good pitch to hit, we put a bat on it."

Touchet 6, Thorp 3

Thorp 002 010 0 - 3 6 3

Touchet 200 022 x - 6 6 3

Hutchinson and Me. Alma. Brown and C. Kessler.

HR - Touchet: Reed

Hits - Thorp: Houle, Free, Hutchinson, Ma. Alma, Me. Alma, Reiners. Touchet: Reed 2, Weaver, Jaspersen, Samuel, Cantrell, C. Kessler.

Touchet 12, Cusick 1

Touchet 410 07 - 12 9 2

Cusick 000 01 - 1 3 2

Reed and C. Kessler. Ostrom and Adamson.

HR - Touchet: Reed

Hits - Touchet: Reed 2, Weaver 2, Cantrell, Jaspersen 2, Warner, Samuel. Cusick: Dierner, Adams 2.

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