The Prairie Home Lady Panthers softball team fell one run shy of capturing the championship in their own tournament over the weekend, losing to the Fayette Falcons 3-2.
Fayette, who beat Otterville earlier in the day 21-6, finished the tournament at 2-0. Prairie Home, meanwhile, closed out the tournament at 1-1 while Otterville finished third at 0-2.
In the opening game against Otterville, the Lady Panthers appeared to have their hands full while playing the Eagles to a 1-1 tie after 2 1/2. However, in the bottom-half of the third, Prairie Home broke the game wide open with four runs to go up 5-1 and then exploded for five more runs in the fourth to make it 10-1.
Unfortunately for Prairie Home, the Lady Eagles wouldn't go away while rallying back with three runs in the fifth to cut the lead to six at 10-1. Then, after Prairie Home added three more runs in the bottom-half of the inning to extend the lead back up to nine at 13-4, Otterville came back and made it interesting in the sixth inning while exploding for seven runs only to fall by a score of 13-11.
Prairie Home coach Glenda Scott said Josie Flood had two home runs in the game against Otterville.
"Josie really hit the ball hard today," Scott said. "Defense was a struggle for us against Otterville. We had five freshmen and sophomores on the field, so they need playing time to learn their position. Freshman Rachel Distler is a backstop at first base while freshman catcher Shianne Rhorer and senior Kohlie Stock are playing well defensively for us. Kohlie is also getting on base for us each game and then Makayla Zey pitched another solid game."
Sophomore Makayla Zey picked up the win in the circle for Prairie Home. In six innings, Zey gave up 11 runs on five hits and one walk while striking out nine. Stephanie Oswald, meanwhile, took the loss for Otterville by surrendering 13 runs on 11 hits and four walks while striking out five.
Prairie Home also out-hit Otterville 11-5, with Josie Flood going 3-for-4 with one single, two home runs and five RBIs.
Makayla Zey also had three hits, with two singles, one triple and one RBI while Rachel Distler added a double and one RBI, Brooke Emmerich and Ally Small each with a RBI-single, Kohlie Stock and Krista Small each with one single and Shianne Rhorer with three RBIs.
For Otterville, Whitney Homan, Stephanie Oswald, Trudy Capps, Eleanor Oehrke and Lisa Robertson each had one hit.
In the game against Fayette, the Lady Panthers jumped out on top with one run in the top-half of the first. However two innings later, Fayette rallied back with two runs in the bottom-half of the third to go up 2-1. Then, after Prairie Home tied the game with one run in the fifth, Fayette came back and scored the winning run in the seventh for the victory.
Scott said Fayette hit a game-winning single down the right field line just out of the reach of Danielle Paulson.
"The game turned into a pitching contest," Scott aid. "Makayla pitched a super game. We moved players around on the infield to improve our defense and the players are adjusting to their new positions. It seemed to have paid off. We had only two errors in the game. Our hitting is coming around. Shianne Rhorer had a home run in this game. It was by far our best all around game of the year."
Clara Lutz picked up the win for the Lady Falcons while Zey took the loss for Prairie Home. Zey pitched 6 2/3 innings and struck out eight batters while giving up three runs on nine hits and one walk.
Minari Hirokawa and Kenzie Smentkowski each had three hits in the game for the Lady Falcons.
For Prairie Home, Makayla Zey went 4-for-4 with four singles. Shianne Rhorer was 2-for-4 with a single, home run and two RBIs while Josie Flood added a single, triple and two RBIs and Daniel Paulson with one single.