(Photo by Brent Shipman, Staff)
SCOTT CITY -- Trying to extend their season-opening win streak to three games, the Scott City Lady Rams mounted a four-run rally in the seventh frame against St. Vincent on Wednesday only to fall 8-7 in extra innings.
"We started off the game kind of slow with our energy down," Scott City coach Amy Pobst said. "Then about the seventh inning they finally woke up and decided to get the energy really going and made a big run to come back (and tie). We just couldn't put anything else across."
Coming up to plate in the bottom of the seventh facing a 7-3 deficit, the Lady Rams offense came to life as Lyndsie Robert and Alexis Spriggs posted back-to-back singles before a walk to Macy Hall loaded the bases.
Taking advantage of a pair of passed balls, both Robert and Spriggs then found their way across the plate to close Scott City to within two runs of the Lady Indians.
Later in the frame, in only her second at bat since coming off the bench, Becky Burger scored runners from second and third on a line drive down the first base side that got just a taste of the first baseman's glove before sailing into the outfield.
"That was a very good hit by Becky," Pobst said. "She's been hitting the ball hard in practice so we gave her the chance to go ahead and hit and she did a good job of keeping it going."
Unable to cap the rally with a game-winning run, the Lady Rams battled with the Lady Indians for another three innings before St. Vincent pushed across the winning run in the top of the tenth.
With a runner on third and two outs, Abby Ruessler laced a ground ball up the middle, easily scoring leadoff hitter Kayla Seabaugh to gain her team the 8-7 edge.
With one last chance to at least knot things up, Scott City quickly found themselves down to their final out following a line out to short and a pop up to shallow right field.
Closing out the Lady Indian win, Kayla Seabaugh fielded a hard hit grounder at short before firing to first to seal her team's win.
"It almost felt like there was magnets in their gloves," Pobst said. "It seemed like everything we hit was hard, but right at a somebody in those extra innings.
"We had a lot of hard hits, just right to people."
Leading Scott City's effort was No. 9 hitter Julie Holder, who had three singles while reaching base in four of her five plate appearances. Lyndsey Rendleman, Robert and Burger had two hits each, including a triple by Rendleman that kicked off a two-run rally in the third inning.
For the Lady Indians, both Ruessler and Amanda Breig had three hits apiece with Seabaugh, Kayla Winkler and Nicole Pruitt each contributing two.
After starting the day with a ground out and pop up, Ruessler went on to bat in three runs while reaching on each of her final four plate appearances. St. Vincent (2-6) coach Jose Robles noted her perseverance.
"One of the things I told her is whether you hit a home run or strikeout, you have to leave it behind you because you still have to play defense," Robles said. "And the first two at bats she struggled just hitting fly balls in the infield. She couldn't get a base hit.
"Then in a big at bat, she comes up with the winning run in scoring position and got a base hit up the middle. So it has a lot to do with the mental game too."
Picking up the win, Casey Unterreiner pitched four innings in relief. She gave up four hits and struck out one while not surrendering an earned run.
Next up, Scott City (2-1) will play a doubleheader today in pool play at the Notre Dame Softballfest. They will start with Chaffee at 4:30 p.m. and then play Notre Dame at 7 p.m.