Softball drops two in Fairfield
Going into the bottom of the seventh, Fairfield had already stranded 10 runners on base during game one of its softball doubleheader Thursday against Washington at Fairfield Middle School.
The Demons had committed four errors, and had given the Trojans three walks and five hits going into the inning, yet Fairfield hadn’t executed with runners in scoring in position; thus the game remained tied at two. Ashley Rausch had struck out 11 batters, so a rally wouldn’t be easy.
Karley Williams kicked off the inning with a single, which was followed by senior Marisa Repp laying down a perfect sacrifice bunt.
With a runner in scoring position, Mackenzie McClure scorched a line drive into left field. Williams took off toward third, but hesitated while nearing the base. She seemed to be caught by surprise that Fairfield coach Bob Bradfield was sending her home.
That gave Washington left fielder Stephanie Fishback time to launch the ball toward the plate. The ball was caught and the tag was applied, but Williams slid in safely, giving Fairfield a 3-2 victory. The Trojans would also take the second game by the score of 7-3.
“We got a key hit under pressure,” Bradfield said. “Repp got us a nice bunt down and Mackenzie came through with the hit. Not every inning works out that way, but it’s nice when they do.”
Williams, McClure and leadoff hitter Sydney Burnett each had two hits. Fairfield started off fast, with Williams smacking a double to bring home Burnett in the first inning.
“We finally clicked on our hitting,” Burnett said. “We hadn’t hit very well against Eddyville or Davis County. It was our home opener and we came out ready to go.”
Washington got nine hits off of Fairfield starting pitcher Alli Deao. Rausch and Fishback both made multiple hits. Lexi Redlinger came through with an RBI single in the fourth. However, the Demons stranded eight runners.
The second game boiled down to a four-run third inning for Fairfield. The Trojans were able to connect on 13 hits in total.
“We just have to play for seven innings,” Washington coach Angie Schrader said. “We take an inning away in both of those ballgames and it’s probably a different story. We need to get the young kids on the team to understand that even if a run scores, we have to take care of the ball and not let the other base runners advance further.”
Fairfield was also assisted in the fifth inning of game one by a tremendous diving catch from centerfielder Sydney Burnett which kept a run off the scoreboard.
“I love playing centerfield,” Burnett said. “I could sleep out there all night.”
Burnett, Williams and Repp each had two hits in game two. Kenady Waugh went 2-4 with a RBI. Sara Trent went 1-3 with an RBI double.
As for Washington, Fishback continued her great performance on the night by going 2-3 with a double, a run scored and a stolen base in game two. Amber Linnenkamp hit a two-RBI single in the second inning.
“We’re just happy to get two wins, because Washington will be one of the conference favorites again,” Bradfield said. “It’s nice to get the sweep.”
No. 9 Fairfield will travel to Iowa City tonight, while Washington will play Saturday in the Oskaloosa Tournament.