July 12, 2013

Alexander, Hopkins help EBF to tournament win


Juniors Tasha Alexander and Nataliah Hopkins used the bat and the arm to advance in the Class 2A softball tournament Wednesday. 
Alexander just missed hitting for the cycle and Hopkins hurled a four-hitter and struck out six to help Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont to a 7-1 victory over North Mahaska.
The game was closer than the score might indicate. Eddyvville-Blakesburg-Fremont took a 1-0 lead in the second inning after a scoring opportunity was erased in the first. The Rocket’s Rachel Maloy reached base on the only walk issued by North Mahaska’s Nicole Brand. 
Makenzie Jensen, who ran for Maloy, scored on Shelby Allgood’s single. 
A second possible run was erased by a play at third by North Mahaska third baseman Carissa McBirnie.
North Mahaska (19-12) was able to tie the contest with their sole run in the top of the third. Freshman Carly Ehret hit a bunt single with two out. She advanced on Sarah Bowen’s single and an error by the right fielder. Bowen reached third, but was stranded. The Warhawks managed just two more baserunners the rest of the way.
Rocket skipper Tony Fenton said it was a combination of his team’s defense and pitching that aided the win.
“We kept people off base and she (Hopkins) had some strikeouts,” said Fenton. “Our defense is pretty tough.”
North Mahaska coach Chris Sampson echoed Fenton’s sentiments.
“We got beat by a good ball club,” said Sampson. “Probably one of the best we have seen all year.  From top to bottom they hit the ball well. Pretty solid defensively. We played well, but they got the runs they needed.”
Sadie Baugher got the Rocket ship rolling in the fourth with a leadoff ground rule double. Allgood reached on a fielder’s choice and a pitch hit Paige Shafer, with bases loaded, Haegen Boyer singled, then Alexander cleared the bases with a double. 

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