SMITHFIELD — With a chance to move into a tie for third in the Region 11 softball standings, the Bobcats seized it Tuesday afternoon.
Visiting Green Canyon enjoyed an early lead, but when Sky View heated up in the batter’s box, it was light’s out for the Wolves. The Bobcats plated three runs in the third, six in the fourth and ended the contest early with two more in the fifth for a 12-2 victory on a sometimes windy and other times sunny day.
“Our girls have worked really hard in the box,” SV head coach Amanda Robinson said. “Today they really came out swinging. They came out wanting to win.”
With Mountain Crest losing at Bear River, the Bobcats (13-9-1, 5-5 region) will finish the league season tied with the Mustangs.
“We wanted to move up into that spot, but also head into the state tournament on a high note,” Robinson said. “I feel like we did that today. … I feel we are ready for state. The girls are excited.”
For the Wolves (7-18, 2-8), it was another outing that got away from them after a bad inning.
“We just need to regroup,” GC head coach Joe Astle said. “It seems like when we get behind, we lose the wind in our sails. I told them they need to keep fighting through it, no matter how bad or down we are. This game is mental.”
While the Wolves did commit four errors, Sky View also finished with 14 hits in the five innings. The hosts also took advantage of six walks in the game.
Eight different Bobcats recorded a hit Tuesday with seven getting at least one RBI. Skylee Haramoto and Cambrie Davis led the way with three hits each, while each drew a base on balls as well. Davis had three RBI and scored three times, while smacking a double.
“We’ve been working on being able to capitalize on anything we can, and I felt we did that today,” Robinson said.
Sky View got a strong performance in the circle from Tawnee Lundahl. The freshman struck out 10 — two in each of the five innings — and did not issue a base on balls. She allowed just six hits, and the Bobcats had just one error.
“Tawnee threw great today,” Robinson said. “Carlee (Watterson) did a good job behind the plate. We played super solid today defensively.”
“Today my defense had my back really good,” Lundahl said. “My low-rise and curveball were working well today.”
The young pitcher also helped her own cause with two hits, drew a walk and scored three runs.
“I had to play hard for the seniors,” Lundahl said. “Our team really came together and played for each other. … When we keep our energy high, we go out and play well.”
Before the game began, Sky View honored seniors Abbey Cantwell, Kimber Augustus and Hadlee Noble, who had been injured but got an at bat in the fifth and drew a walk to the applause of the Bobcat faithful. Cantwell had two hits, scored twice, had an RBI and smacked a double, while Augustus had a hit and an RBI.
“Our seniors played very well today,” Robinson said. “Hadlee Noble has been out all season and has been our biggest fan and cheerleader. She really helps us and her getting at bat today was super awesome.”
The Wolves struck first with a run in the top of the first. Abby Hansen reached base on an infield single, went to second on a wild pitch and scored on a RBI single by Morgan Gittins.
The Bobcats evened up the score with a run in the bottom of the second. Davis led off with a single to right field. With the bases loaded, Brynn Mayhew brought Davis home with a sacrifice fly to center.
Hansen and Gittins teamed up again in the third with Hansen getting on with a single and scoring off a single by Gittins, giving the visitors a 2-1 lead. Hansen would finish with three of the Wolves six hits and made several running catches in center field.
“Abby is at the start of the lineup for a reason,” Astle said. “She has everything going for her. She is tough.”
Sky View took the lead for good in the bottom of the third. Cantwell had an RBI double to tie the game, and Carlee Watterson put the Bobcats in front with a two-run single.
Several walks and a pair of Green Canyon errors sparked Sky View in the fourth. Haramoto started the six-run onslaught with an RBI single to center. A ground ball that turned into a throwing error brought two more runs home, an RBI double by Davis, followed by RBI singles by Augustus and Morgan Hernandez made it 10-2.
After Lundahl fielded a ground ball and threw to first, she gave up a single to Hansen, but then struck out the next two Wolves in the top of the fifth. With the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the fifth, Davis ended it with a two-run single to center.
The Wolves did turn two double plays in the game, threw a runner out at third and came up with some running and sliding catches in the outfield.
“I just want to compete,” Astle said. “That’s what we talk about all of the time. We need to go from the start to the end. We will get there.”
OTHER VALLEY GAMES
In other region action Tuesday, Bear River needed five innings to finish off a perfect season in league play with a 15-3 win over Mountain Crest, while Ridgeline needed just three innings to beat Logan, 24-2. Across the border, Preston won a slugfest against Pocatello, 18-14.
At Logan, the Riverhawks (19-5, 8-2) scored four runs in the top of the first, but then proceeded to score 10 in the second and third against the Grizzlies (1-25, 0-10). Eight Ridgeline batters recorded at least one hit as the team had nine total, while 15 different Riverhawks scored at least one run. Ridgeline had five doubles in the game.
Brinnley Anderson had two hits, scored twice, had two RBI and a double to lead the Ridgeline attack. Allie Williams scored four times, while Adi Hansen scored a trio of runs. Markessa Jensen struck out three in two innings of work, while Addy Hess pitched the final frame.
Logan was held to three hits. Abbey Hart had one hit, scored a run and had an RBI. Four Grizzlies saw time inside the circle as they combined to walk 13 and hit eight Ridgeline batters.
At Garland, the Mustangs (8-12, 5-5) scored first, but the Bears (21-4, 10-0) answered with five runs in the bottom of the first. Bear River just kept pulling away.
“We came out excited and ready to play with nothing to lose,” MC head coach Courtnee Maughan said. “We played an all right game. Bear River just hit better than we pitched and played. That’s what they do. That’s why they are region champs.”
Five Mustangs had a hit, while Teagan Hall and Aspen Leishman each had a double for MC. Halle Maddock and Leishman shared time in the circle, allowing a combined 12 hits and walking four.
“It was nice to see us have some quality at bats,” Maughan said. “Hopefully, that gives us the spark that has been missing.”
Kynlei Nelson and Kortnie Burton each had three hits for the Bears and each scored three times. McCall Maxfield and Carlee Miller each hit two-run home runs. Kate Dahle went the distance at pitcher, striking out seven.
At Pocatello, Preston (10-9) was down 4-3 heading to the fourth, but exploded for seven runs. However Pocatello scored twice in the bottom of the seventh to force an extra inning.
Preston once again plated seven runs in the eighth. Pocatello answered with three, coming up short.
All nine Preston players had at least one hit as the Indians finished with 24 for the game. All nine also scored, while eight had an RBI. Rorie Hansen and Jaycee Larson each had four hits, Larson also had four RBI and scored three times. Kendall Keller, Dru Despain and Shandee Parker each had three hits. Keller pitched 5.1 innings with four strikeouts, while Larson finished the game and had two strikeouts.