SPENCER - Big scoring runs by the opponents led the Cherokee Washington High softball team to a disappointing 1-3 record against top-notch competition at the Spencer Invitational Tournament here on June 21-22.
On Friday, Cherokee dropped its opener 16-10 to Sioux Center, but rebounded to beat George-Little Rock 9-8. On Saturday, the WHS gals lost identical 11-1 games to rated teams, Sioux City Heelan and Newell-Fonda.
Against Sioux Center, Cherokee led 8-5 heading into the sixth inning and scored another run to take a 9-5 lead. However, the Warriors tallied a whopping 11 runs in the bottom of the sixth around three costly fielding errors asnd two walks.
Kelsey Ludwig got the pitching loss for Cherokee, allowing seven earned runs on 13 hits and six walks.
Kelsie Peterson led the WHS offense with a 2-4 game including two triples, two runs scored and an RBI. Lacie Drennan was 3-5 with a run scored, Lynn Carlson 2-5 with a triple and RBI, Autumn Shaefer 3-4 wth three doubles, Alison Husman 1-3 with a run scored and stolen base, and Shauna Drefke and Jesselyn Racine each with a single.
"We still have to learn to get out of those big innings before giving up the lead and the game gets out of hand," said Cherokee coach Jeremy Dettmer.
In the win over George-Little Rock, Katie Sambrano got her first varsity pitching win in relief of starter Shauna Drefke. Sambrano allowed one earned run on two hits and three walks, with one strikeout in one inning of work. Drefke gave up one earned run on eight hits and two walks, while striking out four in six innings.
Peterson was 3-5 with an RBI and run scored, Drennan 2-4 with an RBI and two runs scored, Carlson 2-4 with an RBI and run scored, Husman 2-4 with an RBI and run scored, Alanna Valentine 2-4 with an RBI and run scored, Drefke 1-3 with an RBI, and Racine with a single.
"Like the first game, we jumped out to a 5-1 lead and then gave up seven unearned runs in the top of the sixth," said Dettmer. "However, we answered the bell in the bottom of the seventh and scored five runs to get the come-from-behind win."
Amanda Kohn scored Cherokee's lone run in the loss to Heelan on a single by Kelsey Essick. Ludwig got the mound loss.
"We started to adjust to hitting a good pitcher in the later innings and began to hit the ball hard, but again at people," said Dettmer.
Against Newell-Fonda, Cherokee scored a lone run in the fourth inning after loading the bases with no outs and Peterson hit a ground-out to second base. However, a base running error that inning cost the team the momentum, according to Dettmer.
Peterson took the pitching loss, allowing five earned runs on six hits and six walks. Essick and Ludwig had hits for Cherokee.
"We were flat for most of the game," said Dettmer. "N-F did a good job of putting the ball in play and finding every hole in the defense. We have to find a way to play consistent defense and not have that one big inning that gives up five or six runs. We do that and we'll have a chance to win some games the rest of the season."