Emmetsburg's Lady E-Hawks suffered a tough 19-4 loss at the hands of Spirit Lake on Monday night to start the second half of the softball season. The setback gives Emmetsburg a 4-12 mark on the season with a 2-6 tally in conference play.
The game started with Spirit Lake going down two outs and stranding two runners on base in their half of the first inning, but Emmetsburg would strand Jenna Chapman when the inning ended. The Indians would score five runs in the top of the second inning, as a two-run home run from Paige Krause would finish off the at bat for the 5-0 advantage. The Lady E-Hawks would draw a walk for Hanna VanOosbree but no more in their half of the inning.
The defense stiffened in the top of the third as Emmetsburg allowed the Indians a single in their at-bat and no more. But Emmetsburg would suffer a similar fate in their half of the inning to leave the score at 5-0.
FIRE?AWAY - Ashton Connelly fires off a pitch in Monday’s loss to Spirit Lake. -- Dan Voigt photo
Spirit Lake would leave runners at second and third in the top of the fourth inning but couldn't bring them home in the face of the Emmetsburg defense. But in the bottom of the fourth, the Lady E-Hawks finally made some noise of their own as Miranda Vlasman walked to lead off and would come home off a double by Ashton Connelly. Courtesy runner Kate Jackson would get to third base before the Lady E-Hawks were retired to make the score 5-1.
As the fifth inning started, there was no warning that things would get out of hand, but they would, in a decided Spirit Lake fashion. Back-to-Back errors by the Emmetsburg infield put two runners on base before a single loaded the bases. A double would score two runs and a fielder's choice scored a third run before a runner was thrown out at home.
With one out, a bunt single allowed a run to score and a single loaded the bases again before a single scored two runs to make the score 10-1. A single would follow before the Indians started through their batting order a second time with an error that allowed two runs to cross the plate. A three-run home run shot made the score 15-1 with one out and the Indians kept coming. An error was followed by a single before the Lady E-Hawks made a pitching change, as Hali Noll came in to relive starter Ashton Connelly.
A fielders' choice would score a run before catcher Miranda Vlasman recorded the second out on a foul tip fly catch. But, another error would put a runner on base, as well as score another run for a 17-1 lead. A double by Paige Krause scored two more runs before Noll retired the Indians with a strikeout to end the marathon at-bat.
Trailing 19-1, Emmetsburg refused to give up.
Alexa Naig led off with a walk and then stole second before going to third as Emily Noll singled, which allowed Naig to score her run. Whitney Kibbie hit an infield fly for the first out, but Jenna Chapman's fielders' choice put Noll out at second for the second out. Miranda Vlasman calmly stepped up and ripped a double to center field, moving Chapman to third base and then home.
Jacque Carlson would deliver a single that brought Vlasman home, but Carlson was thrown out at second to end the ballgame.
Ashton Connelly would pitch four and a third innings, giving up 18 runs, four earned, off 14 hits, including two home runs. Connelly walked one batter in her time in the circle. Hali Noll pitched the final two-thirds of an inning and surrendered one run off one hit with one strikeout.
For the Lady E-Hawks, Miranda Vlasman and Ashton Connelly both had doubles, while Emily Noll, Whitney Kibbie and Jacque Carlson all had base hits in the loss, which saw the Lady E-Hawks commit seven errors.