Waitsburg-Prescott, DeSales split softball state openers

Both teams split Friday, with DeSales first winning an 11-inning beast, 7-6, while W-P takes an 11-1 victory in its second game.

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DeSales Irish pitcher Ashlyn Lyons lets out a roar, pumping her fist triumphantly after delivering the final strikeout in DeSales' 11-inning battle with Kittitas during the opening round of the State Class 2B Softball Tournament in Yakima Friday. Behind her, Kittitas' Brittney Rivitt leaves the field dejectedly after having been stranded at third base in the 7-6 Irish win.

YAKIMA - The opening day of the state 2B Softball Tournament here Friday was kind of like the weather for local schools DeSales and Waitsburg-Prescott - periods of sunshine, accompanied by ugly wind and rain.

And in the end, after each school had played through two games against new opponents and traveled at least 130 miles to get to the Gateway Sports Complex in Yakima, the Irish and the Tigers had a familiar opponent in the opening game on Saturday - each other.

But Friday's games were not without their tests.

Colfax 17, Waitsburg-Prescott 7

After entering the state tournament with an 11-11 record and grabbing the No. 2 seed in the Southeast 2B District Tournament last weekend, Waitsburg-Prescott took a surprise trip to state.

And on a team without any seniors, on its first-ever run to state, it was dealing with nerves, said head coach Angie Potts.

"I know for a fact that a lot of the girls didn't get any sleep last night," Potts said. "It's their first time at state, and they were pretty nervous."

The nerves showed in the first game, a 17-7 drubbing from the Colfax Bulldogs.

Cold weather, including rain, wind, mud and a slick field, plus 10 costly errors, didn't help W-P close in the morning opener.

Colfax posted seven in the second, batting through its roster once plus two extras.

W-P looked like it could make a comeback when it brought home six girls in the third inning, including RBIs by Hailey Goenen, Megan Withers, Ashley Wilson and a two-run homer by Sarah Wilson.

With the score 7-6, W-P looked poised to make it competitive.

But Colfax had an unearned run early in the third, W-P went scoreless - and then Colfax put up nine in the fourth to seal it.

W-P scored once more in the fifth, but it wasn't enough to close the 10-run deficit.

Sarah Wilson's two-run homer highlighted the game. Her hit cleared the far left field fence, leaving Colfax's outfielder shrugging.

"We've been waiting all year for Sarah to hit consistently like that," Potts said. "It was good to see."

Ashley Wilson pitched the complete game for the Tigers.

Waitsburg-Prescott 11, Oroville 1

W-P's second game of the day, against Oroville, was the opposite.

The sun was shining, bats were alive and the errors were sliced.

And this time, it was the Hornets - 13-3 losers to Orcas that morning - 10-runned in five innings.

Goenen brought home Rachelle Oseth to open all scoring in the third inning, and W-P's bats got moving in the fourth, posting five runs on six hits.

Ashley Wilson, Sarah Wilson, Jennifer Nichols and Oseth all posted RBIs that inning.

Oroville answered with one of its own, aided by a W-P error, but W-P came back in the fifth with another five, including another RBI for Sarah Wilson and Nichols, and one by Taylor Moon, plus the final steal home by Goenen.

"This game was a lot different," Potts said of the afternoon win. "We're not going to talk a whole lot tonight, I just expect them to come out and play (Saturday)."

Sarah Wilson and Hofer received sportsmanship awards in W-P's Friday games.

DeSales 7, Kittitas 6, 11 innings

DeSales, 16-6, took the No. 3 seed in the 2B District tournament, and got an ugly draw in its first round of state games: Kittitas, a 22-0 powerhouse.

The Irish walked into the match knowing it would be a battle.

And battle it was, through 11 innings and down to the final run, an RBI double by Alex Buley.

"That was a very drug-out game, and you feel kind of bad because after a game like that, both teams deserve to win," said tired Irish coach Russ Vera after the victory. "But the girls didn't give up, and that's something we've been talking about all season long, to keep playing. Just because you're down doesn't mean you can't fight back."

Irish bats were alive - a line-drive foul off Ashlyn Lyons' bat nailed Vera as he stood off third base - but getting the runs in was the challenge.

Vera's response to Lyon's hit, once he recovered, was to point right and mouth, "that way" to the contrite batter.

The Koyotes opened it up early, scoring a run in the first. It stood until the fifth inning, when DeSales posted two for a 2-1 lead.

Kittitas came back with three runs in the sixth, 4-2.

In the top of the seventh, the Irish posted four - including a two-RBI double by Janelle Hartford, a one-run double by Amy Arnzen and a one-run triple by Lyons.

The runs brought the Koyotes' backs up.

Faced with the prospect of losing their first game that season, they posted two to tie at the bottom of the seventh.

Now 6-6 and heading into extra innings, both defenses were prepared to battle, catching hard balls and sitting batters down.

Beginning in the ninth, a runner from each team started on second.

With the runner on base, Kittitas managed to load the bases in the ninth - and Lyons sat the next two batters down for three outs. DeSales managed a sac in the ninth, moving its runner to third, but a Prior hit a short ground ball, outing herself and then the runner.

In the 10th, the Kittitas runner was at third when Brittney Rivitt hit a hard grounder, caught by DeSales shortstop Lexi Zander.

Paul was on her way home, and Arnzen made a grab on the line, outing the runner at home.

DeSales managed to load the bases in the top of the 10th, but Maupin sat the final batter down for the out.

Now heading into the 11th of what was supposed to be a seven-inning match, the DeSales-Kittitas game had drawn a crowd.

Lyons sat down three Kittitas batters in the top, and it looked like more of the same in the bottom.

But Buley, in her fifth at-bat that day, was ready.

She doubled, moving the runner home to an ecstatic team.

Lyons threw 16 strikeouts on the way to handing Kittitas its first season loss, Vera said.

"That was a well-deserved win and a well-fought game," Vera said, while his team celebrated.

Napavine 22, DeSales 5

After a four-hour break, the Irish came back to play Napavine.

This game didn't go as planned.

Lyons, tired from her earlier 49-batter effort, allowed Napavine eight runs and went through four and a half innings before telling Vera she was done.

But it was too late for DeSales. Its last scores came in the fourth.

Amanda Warnick relieved her, but the hole - 8-2 - was already deep, and the Napavine bats were alive.

After seven complete innings, DeSales escaped, 22-5, with Napavine's last 10 runs coming in the seventh inning.

"It was tough," said Vera. "Ashlyn, our starting pitcher, had shoulder problems and we had to pull her out to rest her. Amanda came in, and she did the best she could do. You've got to give credit to Napavine, they came out and hit the ball."

Lyons pitched 16 and a half innings of the first day of the tourney.

Tired and ready to get back to the hotel, Vera said the girls would come to Saturday play ready.

"They're disappointed, but they're still pumped to be here and we'll be ready (Saturday)," he said.

Prior and Warnick received the sportsmanship awards for DeSales' two games.

Colfax 17, Waitsburg-Prescott 7

Colfax 071 9x - 17 9 2

W-P 006 01 - 7 6 10

Hickman and Hall. Grende and Withers.

HR - W-P: Wilson.

Hits - Col: Hall 2, Burke, Nyholm 2, Waldo, Webber, Herne, Robinson, Hickman. W-P: Goenen, A. Wilson, Withers, Hofer, S. Wilson, Moon.

Waitsburg-Prescott 11, Oroville 1

Oro 000 100 - 1 3 4

W-P 001 55X - 11 10 2

Egerton, Hutsell (5) and R. Quick, Thompson (5). Nichols and Withers.

HR - none.

Hits - Oro: Carper, J. Hutsell, C. Hutsell. W-P: Goenen, A. Wilson, Hafen, Withers, S. Wilson 2, Nichols 2, Moon, Oseth.

DeSales 7, Kittitas 6, 11 innings

DeS 000 020 400 01 - 7 10 2

Kitt 100 003 200 00 - 6 8 1

Lyons and Arnzen. Maupin and Calahan.

HR - Kitt: Maupin.

Hits - DeS: Lyons 2, Warnick, L. Zander 2, Arnzen, Hartford 2, Buley, Prior. Kitt: Erickson, Maupin 3, Paul 2, Rivitt, Uceny.

Napavine 22, DeSales 5

Napa 010 524 (10) - 22 23 2 DeS 001 130 0 - 5 6 6

Hylton and May. Lyons, Warnick (5) and Arnzen.

HR - none.

Hits - Napavine: Pannette 3, Sahlinger 3, May 3, Smith 2, Morris 2, Dekoker 2, Brossard 2, Goodman 3, Hylton 3. DeS: Arnzen, Hartford, Lyons 2, Buley, Prior,

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