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Lady Wolves head to playoff action

Posted by: tdt -

The Lady Wolves softball team and fans traveled to Hereford on Saturday. Their opponent in a tiebreaker game was Lubbock Estacado. The two teams had split in their earlier two meetings, each winning at home. The sun was out and the weather was hot and windy. Both teams were ready to play and take the third playoff spot in district. Tori Thrash pitched for Dalhart and the two teams were able to limit scoring to only a few runs each inning.

In the first inning, Estacado got on the board quickly with three runs and Dalhart followed with one. In the second, Estacado added one run and Dalhart two to make the score 4-3, Estacado.

The Wolves held Estacado scoreless in the third, but added three more to take a 6-4 lead. Neither team scored in the fourth and fifth, but in the sixth Dalhart tacked on another run while keeping Estacado from scoring, taking a 7-6 lead going into the top of the seventh.

A determined Estacado team was able to put two more runs on the board tying the game and kept the Wolves from scoring, ending the game in a tie and requiring extra innings to be played.

Dalhart, being the home team, got last bat so they had to hold Estacado and add a run. The first batter for Estacado struck out with the second walking. The next two batters connected with the ball and made it to base. With bases loaded, Dalhart walked the next batter allowing the runner on third to score, giving the Lubbock team a one run lead with bases loaded and one out. The next batter up hit a pop to center where Sadye Hammett moved up on the short ball, and caught it and threw it home to Molly Kruse. At the same time the third base runner headed home without tagging up on the caught ball, the runner and ball got to home about the same time and Kruse threw the ball back to third basemen Melody Gonzales who touched the bag for the third out.

Trailing 7-6 the Wolves had to make something happen. The first batter up was Sadye Hammett, known for slap bunts. She had Estacado up close and after two strikes they had not moved back, so she popped a ball over the third baseman’s head for a base hit. Vanessa Fowler followed suit with a base hit over the short stops head, moving Hammett to second. Makayla Gant had a base hit, and a bad throw to second allowed Hammett to score tying the game. Fowler who had run to second, then headed to third on the bad throw to second. A bad throw to third allowed her to arrive at the base safely. With the action at third, Gant saw an opportunity and stole second. Next batter up was Kruse who got a base hit with a shot to the third base, loading the bases. With bases loaded, no outs and the game tied, Thrash came to the plate. Something broke the pitchers concentration causing her to balk on the pitch to Thrash. This balk allowed the runners to advance giving Dalhart the lead and win. The team will now travel to Lubbock and take on Graham in playoff action. Time and date are not known yet, but will probably be Friday and Saturday if it is a best of three series.


(Photos by N.L. Olson)