EAGLE GROVE Emmetsburg's post season fortunes seemed to be bright through the top of the sixth inning in Tuesday's Class 2A Regional tournament game, but things darkened quickly and turned into a heartbreaking 4-3 loss that ended Emmetsburg's season. The loss ends a long campaign for the Lady E-Hawks with a record of 11-21.
Emmetsburg opened the game with a single from Miranda Vlasman and followed it up with a two-out single from Michaela Rehm, but the two runners were stranded. Eagle Grove would get a base hit of their own but also left the runner.
The Lady E-Hawks would go down in order in the second and the Eagles got a double, only to leave the runner waiting at second to end the inning.
I?GOT?IT! - Lady E-Hawk second baseman Emily Noll squeezes a fly ball in her glove during play in Tuesday’s Class 2A Regional game at Eagle Grove. -- Dan Voigt photo
Emmetsburg right fielder Alexa Naig led off the third by drawing a walk and promptly stole second. An error on a dropped fly ball put Whitney Kibbie on base and a passed ball let Naig scamper home to score the game's first run.
With two outs and Kibbie at second base, Michaela Rehm stepped to the plate and pounded a double to the left center fence. Kibbie raced for home as Rehm stopped at second base, but the scoring would stop with Rehm looking for a way home. Eagle Grove would get a base hit in their half of the third, but left the runner waiting to trail 2-0 to end the inning.
A fly out opened the fourth for Emmetsburg, but a base hit from Ashton Connelly would bring courtesy runner Ashley Overberg to the basepaths. Overberg stole second and then stole third before racing home to score a run off the throw on the try to put her out at third. The run would give the Lady E-Hawks a 3-0 lead when the at-bat ended.
The Eagles came up in the bottom of the fourth and got a base runner off a dropped third strike error, but left her waiting when the inning ended. The two clubs would trade outs to make for a quick fifth inning.
In the top of the sixth, Emmetsburg would go down in order. Eagle Grove led off with a strikeout, but then got back-to-back hits to score one run before a put out, but an error allowed a second run to score before the Eagles were retired.
Clinging to a 3-2 lead to start the seventh, Emmetsburg led off with Ashton Connelly being put out. Kendall Deitering stepped up and belted a single before Alexa Naig struck out. With two away and a runner at first, Whitney Kibbie smacked a single by second base to give Emmetsburg two runners on base. But the hopes dimmed as Miranda Vlasman was struck out to end the at-bat.
Now it was up to the defense. Emmetsburg pitcher Ashton Connelly racked up her 12th strikeout to start the bottom of the seventh, but she hit the next batter with a pitch to put her on base. An error on a dropped fly ball gave the Eagles a spark that was fanned by a single.
A passed ball allowed the tying run to score before a walk loaded the bases with one out.
With the score tied at 3-3, a bunt to Tegan Olson at third was quickly thrown back to catcher Miranda Vlasman to get the out at home, but the bases were still loaded. On the next pitch, a grounder was mis-handled in the infield. The bobble allowed the game-winning run to score, ending Emmetsburg's season.
Ashton Connelly would take the loss, giving up four runs, one earned, off six hits, with one walk and 12 strikeouts in the contest.
Emmetsburg got a double and single from Michaela Rehm, along with singles from Whitney Kibbie, Miranda Vlasman and Ashton Connelly in the effort.
Emmetsburg bids farewell to four senior players with the end of the campaign in Miranda Vlasman, Whitney Kibbie, Jacque Carlson and Emily Noll.