Reed won its first game Friday, getting by Damonte Ranch 5-3 in 10 innings, but then was handed a gut-wrenching 3-2 winners’ bracket loss by tournament host Bishop Manogue.
The split on Day 2 of the regional tournament leaves Reed to meet Damonte Ranch again. That meeting will take place at 10 a.m. today with the winner earning a date with Manogue in the championship.
“We played 17 innings today and every one had intensity in it,” Reed coach Jon Wunder said. “I’m proud of the girls. We could’ve rolled over at any time in that first game and we didn’t. We battled and did what we had to win.
“We didn’t let down, we just ran into a good pitcher. Both teams left a lot of runners on base. We needed to do a better job of executing … I think we’ll be ready to go tomorrow. We’ve got an uphill road but we’ll battle.”
Reed and Manogue battled through four innings of scoreless softball in their winners’ bracket tilt before the Raiders found the scoring column. Mary Dettling singled and Cori Gammon walked to start the RHS fifth.
A Shivaun Landeros single plated Dettling. Gammon came home later in the inning when a Manogue outfielder made a throw to the plate trying to hold Gammon at third. The errant toss sailed wide and high, allowing Gammon to score and gave Reed a 2-0 lead.
Manogue wasted no time pulling into a 2-2 deadlock. The Miners got the two runs back in the bottom of the fifth. Manogue’s Kelly Lujan laced an RBI single for the private Catholic school’s first run. She scored soon after on a fielder’s choice.
Unfortunately for Reed fans, the Raiders could never post the go-ahead run. Reed left a go-ahead run on third base in both the sixth and seventh innings.
Manogue made Reed pay for not cashing in on its opportunities. In the bottom of the seventh, with two outs, Manogue’s No. 5 hitter, Cara McCarthy bashed a solo walk-off homer over the center-field fence, propelling Manogue to victory and into the Northern 4A tourney’s title game Saturday at noon.
Reed, the High Desert League’s No. 2 seed, advanced into the winners’ bracket game against Manogue thanks to its extra-innings upset of top-seeded Damonte Ranch earlier in the day.
The Raiders held a 3-2 lead as Damonte Ranch came up for its turn in the bottom of the seventh. The Mustangs tacked on a run to force extra innings. The teams traded zeroes through the eighth and ninth innings, but Reed cashed in on a Damonte miscue to steal the win.
Destinee Levesque reached on a two-base error after hitting a ball to right field that was misplayed. Makaela Moore was issued a walk. Andi Lee singled to score Levesque and Dettling grounded out for an RBI to score Moore.
When Damonte did not score in the bottom of the tenth off Levesque, Reed had the key win. Levesque went all 10 innings in the circle for Reed. She scattered nine Damonte hits, while striking out seven and walking one.
•The day didn’t go near as well for the other Sparks school competing at Regionals. Spanish Springs, the defending state champion and one of the tournament’s two No. 1 seeds was eliminated from contention after a 1-0 loss to Manogue and a 10-5 defeat against Damonte Ranch. Sandwiched between the two losses was a 6-3 win over North Valleys.
“It is tough,” Spanish Springs coach Jeff Davidson said. “In that first game some things went against us that took a lot out of us emotionally. But the bottom line is we did not play well enough to win.”
In the loss to Manogue, Spanish Springs had the potential game-tying run cut down at the plate on the final out of the game. The Cougars did bounce back and beat North Valleys in the losers’ bracket to briefly stay alive. The triumph over North Valleys was keyed by a five-run first-inning outburst.
Damonte Ranch jumped on Spanish Springs from the start en route to sending the perennial state power Cougars home for the season. Damonte scored two runs in the first, two more in the second and three more in the third, building a 7-0 lead before Spanish Springs knew what hit it.
The Mustangs got a two-run homer in the first and a three-run dinger in the third to highlight their hot start.
Spanish Springs did not go down without a fight. The Cougars rallied for two runs in the third and three in the fourth to get back in the game. Sydney Darby and Brette Lawrence had RBI doubles for Spanish Springs in the third. Danica Arterburn raked a three-run homer for the Cougs in the fourth.
“The kids played well all year,” Davidson said. “We just didn’t play well today. We made a lot of errors on routine plays and you can’t beat good teams when you don’t play well.”