FORT?DODGE - It took some last moment heroics from freshman Michaela Rehm for the Emmetsburg Lady E-Hawks to earn a seventh place finish in the Class 2A Portion of the Iowa State Softball Tournament last Wednesday. After a morning consolation semi-final game loss to Denver, Emmetsburg moved into the seventh place game against the Lady Falcons of Wayne.
For the final game of the season, Emmetsburg Coach Travis Birkey made a pitching change, sending Freshman Ashton Connelly to the circle to start the contest. Connelly tallied two strikeouts to open the contest, then gave up a double before Emmetsburg got the third out. In the bottom of the first Emmetsburg went down in order.
Wayne would lead off the top of the second with a single, but followed it with a strikeout. However, Wayne would get a single and then scored a run off an error at first base to take a 1-0 lead, but left their two runners stranded when Connelly earned her fourth strikeout to end the at-bat.
The Lady E-Hawks pose with their seventh place award. Kneeling from left are Kendall Deitering, Faith Schmidt, Kaity Degen, Aly Berven, Jacque Carlson, Whitney Kibbe and Michaela Rehm. Back, from left to right, Hannah Bird, Ashton Connelly, Tegan Olson Coach Travis Birkey, Emily Bonnstetter, Alexa Naig, Miranda Vlasman, Hali Noll, Hannah VanOosbree, Bailee Garrelts, Assistant Coach John Kennedy and Katie Ruiz. --Dan Voigt photo
In the bottom of the second, Emmetsburg would lead off with Jacque Carlson rapping out a base hit. Pinch runner Kendall Deitering would take over on the base paths and advanced off a sacrifice bunt by Miranda Vlasman. A sacrifice fly deep into right field allowed Deitering to come home and score the tying run before Emmetsburg was retired to end the inning with the 1-1 draw.
,Wayne would be retired in order in the top of the third inning, despite a walk that turned into the third out when the runner was thrown out at second base by Emmetsburg catcher Miranda Vlasman and shortstop Aly Berven.
The Lady E-Hawks would also go down in order in the bottom of the third as the two teams battled defensively in near-100 degree temperatures.
The fourth inning saw Wayne come up with a single, but the Lady Falcons would leave their runner at first base when the at-bat ended.
Emmetsburg would be struck out in order in the bottom of the fourth inning as the 1-1 deadlock continued.
Wany would put a runner on base in the top of the fifth after relief pitcher Faith Schmidt hit the third batter. The runner would advance to third base off a stolen base and a wild pitch, but would be left waiting.
But once again, Emmetsburg struggled at the plate and was put out in order to end the fifth inning of the game.
In the top of the sixth, Wany led off with a single and followed it up with an error on a fielder's choice that allowed the runner to get to first without a play.
With two Wayne runners in scoring position, the Lady E-Hawk defense answered the call and made the stop with a pair of strikeouts and an infield fly catch by third baseman Tegan Olson to end the threat.
However, the Lady E-Hawks were stymied in their turn at bat, as they went down in order for the fourth consecutive inning.
With the score still knotted at 1-1 in the top of the seventh, Wayne would go down one out before getting a big single, but the runner would be thrown out as she tried to steal third as Vlasman threw to Berven, covering the bag on a bunt attempt for the second out.
A single would leave a runner at second base after stealing second, but the threat was ended when Whitney Kibbie caught a fly ball at second.
Now, it was time for Emmetsburg to make something happen.
Faith Schmidt led off the bottom of the seventh with a base hit, and courtesy runner Alexa Naig took over on the basepaths. Jacque Carlson would strike out looking and Miranda Vlasman was put out at first as Naig moved to second.
With two out and the winning run at second, Michaela Rehm stepped up to the plate and tallied her second hit of the game, a single deep into center field. The ball rolled to the fence as Naig broke for third and rounded the bag, headed for home. The throw came in but Naig beat the throw by several steps to cross the plate to end the game with the 2-1 Emmetsburg win.
Ashton Connelly would go four innings in the circle and surrendered just one run off four hits, with one walk and four strikeouts. Faith Schmidt would finish the final three innings, giving up three hits with two strikeouts.
For Emmetsburg, Michaela Rehm had two hits, including the game-winning RBI, while Faith Schmidt and Jacque Carlson added hits to the effort.