(Photo by Brent Shipman, Staff)
EAST PRAIRIE -- In giving up six and four-run rallies in the final two innings on Monday the East Prairie Lady Eagles fell 15-5 to Woodland after five innings via the mercy rule.
"Just a little disappointed on that one," East Prairie head coach Steve Stokes said of the game. "We should have played at least a full seven innings. I'm not saying we should have won, but we should have been there to give us a chance to win it at the end of the game."
After following down 5-0 after two innings the Lady Eagles were able to slow down the Lady Cardinals' attack in the third when they sent them down in order. Coming up in the home half of the frame East Prairie proceeded to put together a four-run rally to close back to within a run.
With East Prairie taking advantage of three straight walks to load the bases, Caitlin Harwell got her team on the board with a drive to right field the plated the Lady Eagles first two runs of the game.
Coming up the plate after Harwell, Lauren Magee singled in another pair of runs to close East Prairie to within 5-4.
As quickly as they had worked themselves back into contention, however, the Lady Eagles saw Woodland knock in another six runs in the fourth. Taking advantage of five walks, an error and a single from Kendra Pinkley six straight Lady Cardinals crossed the plate to push Woodland ahead 11-4.
"I didn't see how many walks we had," Stokes said. "But I know that in the third we had came back within a run. Then my pitcher got a little tired and walked five or six. When you do that and let somebody hit on you it ends up being a big inning."
After loading the bases the Lady Eagles retaliated with one last run in the bottom of the fourth on a sacrifice fly from Kali Rice before stranding a pair of runners to end the frame.
Needing only four runs to put the run rule in play the Lady Cardinals came out in the fifth and batted around the order to move up 15-5. Chelsey Kirkpatrick drove in the first on a single before an infield error brought in another.
It was after the Lady Cardinals had loaded the bases that a dropped fly ball in the outfield allowed the final two runs to score, including the game-winner.
With one last chance to extend the game East Prairie came out in the bottom of the fifth and put a runner on second with one out. Unfortunately for the Lady Eagles that runner was caught trying to advance to third on a ground ball before a strikeout ended the game.
"They came out ready to go," Woodland head coach Andrea Arnold said of her team. "We had a three-day weekend so this was kind of a game we had to get into fast. We played hard and I'm proud of them. We have one more game and hopefully we'll have a win tomorrow and finish the year 13-9."
In outhitting East Prairie 12-5 the Lady Cardinals were led by Pinkley, who went 3 for 4 while driving in a run and scoring two. Kathlyn Cooper, Josie Long and Kirkpatrick had two hits each, including a triple and three runs scored by Cooper.
"We hit the ball well today," Arnold said. "That's something we've done pretty well (all year). I'm proud of the way they've been hitting. We don't struggle a lot at the plate. We know when to take walks and we know when to hit the ball. We have several girls who have hit well throughout the season."
For the Lady Eagles Taylor Johnston went 2 for 3 with a pair of singles. Harwell had a double with Desiree Williams and Magee adding a single each to East Prairie's cause.
Going all five innings Long picked up the win allowing five runs and five hits while walking eight and striking out seven.
Now standing at 12-10 on the year East Prairie will finish out its spring season on Wednesday against visiting Bloomfield at 4 p.m.
Woodland 230 64 - 15
East Prairie 004 10 - 5
WP -- Josie Long. LP -- Lauren Magee. Multiple hitters -- (W) Kathlyn Cooper 2-4, Josie Long 2-4, Kendra Pinkley 3-4, Chelsey Kirkpatrick 2-3; (E) Taylor Johnston 3-3. 2B -- (E) Caitlin Harwell. 3B -- (W) Cooper.