Braves end weekend on sour note
Tonganoxie fifth at nationals
Lawrence The Tonganoxie Braves dropped a pair of games Saturday against Fort Scott and Kearney (Neb.) at the AFA Softball National Championship Tournament in Lawrence.
Tonganoxie finished the tournament 5-3, good for fifth place in the 29-team field.
In the early 3-0 loss against the Fort Scott Tigers, the Braves simply couldn't get their bats going. Junior-to-be Sami Rush produced the lone Tonganoxie hit against Fort Scott's Heather Davis, who struck out 12 Tonganoxie batters.
Amie Riddle didn't pitch poorly for Tonganoxie, allowing eight hits, two earned runs, striking out five and walking none. Riddle was forced to leave the tournament after the game to attend a dance camp for college.
A scary moment occurred for Tonganoxie when starting catcher Melissa Pratt turned on a pitch in the first inning. Davis jammed Pratt inside on the pitch, and when Pratt turned on it, the ball struck one of her fingers on her right hand.
Pratt immediately left the game. X-rays revealed the finger wasn't broken, but Pratt, who bats in the third spot, missed the remainder of the tournament.
Tiffany Jacobs, a freshman-to-be, took Pratt's place behind the plate.
Tonganoxie lost, 2-0, to Kearney in the second game of the day. The Braves actually defeated Kearney, 3-1, Thursday night in the first game of bracket play.
The Braves had their chances, but couldn't bring their baserunners home. They stranded six on base.
Amanda Albert filled in well for Riddle, pitching five 2/3 innings and only giving up two runs. Albert wasn't the overpowering strikeout pitcher Riddle was, but her defense backed her up well. Albert was very controlled on the mound. She didn't walk a batter and struck out two. She just didn't have run support.
The Braves only generated three hits against Kearney.
Roni Grizzle went 1-for-3 with a double and a stolen base. Rush reached base twice with two walks. Tracie Hileman and Lindsey Fatherley also produced hits for Tonganoxie.
Braves coach Craig Lohman said he'd hold tryouts in a few weeks for fall ball. A specific date has not been named.
See Wednesday's edition of The Mirror for the complete story, along with Braves tournament stats.