FORT DODGE — The Ottumwa softball team left 12 batters stranded in its 7-2 loss to Johnston Friday morning in the Class 5A semifinals in a game that took two days to complete because of some untimely weather.
The Dragons were able to secure a five-point victory, despite being outhit 11-10. The game was continued Friday with Johnston leading 3-0 with runners on first and second and one out in the top of the third inning. The lightning coupled with the rain that blanketed Harlan Rogers Park Thursday may have been a mixed blessing because when play was suspended, the Dragons had harnessed all the game’s momentum.
But the Bulldogs, and Mandi Moore in particular, came out looking re-invigorated by the unplanned respite the weather had bequeathed to them. After the Dragons successfully performed a double steal to start the continued game, Moore got Dragon Lauren Thilges to hit a ground ball to shortstop Kassidi Henderson. Henderson fielded the ball and fired a throw home to Beth Overturf, who applied the tag to Ellen Espeland for the second out of the inning. Moore followed this play by fanning Emma Monthei to end the inning.
Alexis Winn and Nicole Peyton both recorded hits for the Bulldogs in the bottom of the fourth, but Ottumwa was unable to get either base runner across home plate — a theme that would haunt the Bulldogs throughout. Ottumwa once again threatened to score in the fifth. Chelsea Griffiths got things rolling with a one-out ground ball single up the middle. After a Katie Sammons strikeout, Olivia Roark slapped a single to the left side of the infield and Sammy Garrett poked a ground ball single up the middle, loading the bases for Winn. Ottumwa, however, was once again unable to capitalize on a scoring opportunity, as Winn was called out on strikes.