Everytime the Prairie Home Lady Panthers softball team needed a run or spark Thursday night at home against the California Pintos, junior Shianne Rhorer was right there to deliver for the Lady Panthers.
While trailing 6-3 going into the bottom-half of the third, Rhorer hit the first of her two home runs on the night with a two-run shot to left-center to cut California’s lead to one at 6-5. Meanwhile, after the Lady Pintos increased that lead to 10-5 in its half of the fourth, Rhorer again made a difference in the bottom-half of the fifth with another two-run shot to center field to put Prairie Home on top 15-10.
The Lady Panthers never trailed after that while holding California scoreless in the next-two innings for a 15-10 victory.
While the win improved Prairie Home’s record to 5-2 on the season, head coach Jessica Scott said this was a straight battle from the very beginning. “Both teams were hitting, scoring and making plays,” Scott said. “There were a few things we wanted to be different but we didn’t let anything get us down. Makayla Zey and Kurstin Leonard worked hard on the mound. Shianne Rhorer hit two home runs and everyone was working. I am so proud of my girls for never giving up and coming out on top. They stayed together as a team and earned that win.”
In addition to the two home runs, Rhorer also finished the game with a single and four RBIs on the night.
Needless to say, the win didn’t come easy for the Lady Panthers. While committing five errors in the field, Prairie Home also trailed for the first-four innings while giving up three runs in the top-half of the second on three hits.
Meanwhile, after getting two of those runs back in the bottom-half of the second on a ground out by Josie Flood and a RBI-single to short by Leonard, Prairie Home let down its guard again in the third as California tallied three more runs on three hits, which included a one-out triple to left by Trimble to extend the lead to 6-2.
Prairie Home kept plugging away, though. In the bottom-half of the third, the Lady Panthers added three more runs on the RBI-single over second by Kristen Peterson and the two-run home run to left center by Rhorer to cut the lead to one at 6-5.
Then, in the fourth, the Lady Pintos added four more runs on three hits and a costly error to extend the lead to 10-5.
Prairie Home answered with four runs of its own in the bottom-half of the fourth on back-to-back doubles by Josie Flood and Ally Small and a two-RBI single over third by Kristen Peterson to trim the lead again back to one at 10-9.
The Lady Pintos couldn’t buy a hit after that while putting only two runners on for the rest of the game.
As for Prairie Home, they had their best inning in the bottom-half of the fifth by exploding for six runs on three hits and three walks to go ahead by a score of 15-10. Rachel Distler had a two-RBI-single up the middle in the inning for the Lady Panthers while Zey added another RBI-single to left, followed by Rhorer’s two-run home run.
Makayla Zey picked up the win in the circle for Prairie Home while Johnson took the loss for California. Zey pitched the first-five innings and gave up 10 runs on 11 hits while striking out four. Kurstin Leonard then came in and pitched two innings in relief and allowed one hit and one walk while striking out one batter.
Prairie Home also out-hit California 13-12, with Ally Small going 3-for-4 with a single, two doubles and one RBI.
Rachel Distler was 2-for-4 with a triple, home run and three RBIs while Kristen Peterson added a single, double and three RBIs, Makayla Zey and Josie Flood each with a RBI-double and Kurstin Leonard with a RBI-single.
For California, Moore had three hits while Trimble and Allee added two hits each.