EDDYVILLE – After starting the week with a loss to Davis County, The Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont softball won the final seven games of the week, including two tournament championships, and a big conference win.
In this string, the Rockets, led by starting pitchers Nataliah Hopkins and Paige Shafer, shut out five consecutive opponents. The final game of the seven-game winning streak was a come-from-behind eight-inning win over the top team in the string.
The Rockets had six wins in a row coming to the championship, but for five innings the chance to make it seven didn’t look good. PCM led E-B-F 3-0 after five, limiting the Rockets to just three hits.
E-B-F tied it in the sixth with three runs. Nataliah Hopkins had the first RBI with a line shot single that hit the Mustang pitcher and bounced over to the dugout. The big hit was a tying two-run double that one-hopped the fence in center off the bat of McKinley Moore.
“We started slow in this game but we still showed that hitting is a strength for us,” said E-B-F head coach Tony Fenton. “We get contributions all through our line-up.”
Neither team scored in the seventh and play headed to the eighth. In tournament play, the international rule is used in extra innings. To start the inning, a runner starts at second base.
PCM took advantage, as two consecutive fly balls to the outfield scored the run. Hopkins’ third strikeout limited the damage to one run.
Starting at an opportune place in the order, the Rockets were in good shape to play the international rule.
“Our team has good speed,” said Fenton. “I felt like we would get one for sure.”
Haegan Boyer’s perfect sacrifice bunt moved Paige Shafer to third. Tasha Alexander then delivered an RBI single to tie it up.