WALLA WALLA - Saturday's abundant rays of sunshine shone brightly on both DeSales and Wa-Hi's junior varsity during a high school softball doubleheader at Murr Sports Park.
The junior Blue Devils prevailed in game one, 5-3, and the Irish, playing for the first time in just over two weeks, claimed the nightcap, 11-6, to improve their overall record to 3-1.
"We needed to get a game," DeSales coach Russ Vera said. "All in all, it was good. I'm proud of the girls and proud of the way we played."
Ashlyn Lyons drove in the first run of Saturday's opener with a single to left field in the first inning and Bobbie Prior followed with a run-scoring grounder to first base to give DeSales a 2-0 lead.
Jacie McDaniels produced Wa-Hi's first run with a two-out triple to right in the third inning and Kylie Schuster lofted a sacrifice fly to center in the fourth to tie the game at 2-2.
The Irish took their final lead of the game in the fifth inning when Ashlyn Lyons grounded a two-out single to center that scored Allesyn Lyons, who had reached base on a one-out triple.
Carly Clark put the Blue Devils in front, 4-3, with a two-RBI single to center in the bottom of the fifth. Katy Hussey poked an RBI single down the left-field line later in the frame.
Kate Ferenz pitched a six-hit complete game for Wa-Hi and struck out seven.
"We played great ball," Wa-Hi coach Kate Keyes said. "We were aggressive on the bases, got runners in scoring position, and made stuff happen.
"Kate settled in and started to hit her spots," Keyes said of Ferenz's performance after inning one.
DeSales put up a five spot in the first inning of game two. Claire Conley and Cassidy Meliah had RBI hits to highlight the stanza.
Wa-Hi plated an unearned run in the home first before the Irish scored single tallies in the second and third innings. In the second, Conley singled to left and scored on a three-base error, and Allesyn Lyons made it 7-1 with an RBI single in the third.
Wa-Hi cut the six-run deficit in half with three runs in the fourth. Maddie Fortney hit an RBI single to right and Jessica Norby clubbed a two-run triple to left.
Allesyn Lyons continued her hot hitting with a three-bagger in the fifth inning that brought home a pair of runs. DeSales eventually stretched its lead to six, 10-4, after four-and-a-half innings.
An RBI single by the Blue Devils' Madison Doepker made it 10-5 after five.
Both teams scored in the seventh. Ashlyn Lyons towered a sacrifice fly to right in the top half of the inning, and Doepker duplicated her fifth-inning effort in Wa-Hi's final at-bat.
Ashlyn Lyons worked the first three innings in the circle for the Irish and fanned seven before giving way to Allesyn Lyons in the fourth.
"Allesyn was on a tear (five hits on the day)," Vera said. "We wanted to get one full game from Ashlyn (in the circle) and a couple of innings in the second game to get her arm in shape."
"We struggled defensively," Keyes said when referencing the Blue Devils' five errors in the nightcap. "Offensively, we did pretty (well). We kept fighting our way back, but couldn't get enough (runs)."
DeSales travels to Colfax for a non-league twin bill on Tuesday.
DeSales 200 010 0 - 3 6 3
Wa-Hi J.V. 001 130 x - 5 8 0
As. Lyons and Postlewait; Ferenz and McDaniels.
HR - none.
Hits - DeSales: Al. Lyons 3, As. Lyons 2, Lesko; Wa-Hi J.V.: McDaniels 3, Clark 2, Likes, Aichele, Hussey.
DeSales 511 030 1 - 11 11 1
Wa-Hi J.V. 100 310 1 - 6 9 5
As. Lyons, Al. Lyons (4) and Postlewait; Aichele, Ferenz (6) and McDaniels.
HR - none.
Hits - DeSales: As. Lyons 2, C. Conley 2, Postlewait 2, Al. Lyons 2, Meliah, Hall, J. Conley; Wa-Hi J.V.: Aichele 2, McDaniels 2, Doepker 2, Fortney, Norby, Hussey.