La Vernia Lady Bears best Navarro for quarterfinals win
ANTONIO MORANO/www. sasports.com —
Morgan Mikes delivers a pitch during the La Vernia Lady Bears’ playoff game with Navarro on May 9.
With a pair of back-to-back wins over Navarro, the La Vernia Lady Bear softball team won its region quarterfinal playoff, and will now advance to the region semifinals.
The Lady Bears traveled to Navarro on May 9 for the first game in a best-of-three series. Navarro retired the first two La Vernia batters of the game with a pair of strikeouts, but then allowed the Lady Bears a little two-out rally. Senior Johnna Sturm started things off with a single to left field, and then Savannah Martinez ripped a single to left. Taylor Spoo came in to run for Sturm, and they scored the first run of the game as Morgan Mikes ripped a third-straight Lady Bear single into center field. Navarro got out of the inning shortly thereafter, but La Vernia had an early 1-0 lead.
La Vernia added to its lead in the top of the third. Kara Myrick singled to left to start the inning, and then Sturm homered over the right-field fence for 2 Lady Bear runs. Martinez followed Sturm’s home run with a single to left field, but things went cold from there, as the Lady Panthers tallied three quick outs to end the side.
Navarro got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fourth inning with 1 run off a pair of singles and a sacrifice fly. The Lady Panthers couldn’t get any closer during the fifth or sixth innings, and La Vernia took a run back in the top of the seventh after Sturm drew a walk and later scored on a ground ball off the bat of Mikes.
On May 10, the series moved to La Vernia, and the Lady Bears wasted no time in jumping all over the Lady Panthers.
After a quick three-up, three-down for Navarro, the Lady Bears took their first chance at the plate, and hung 3 runs on the board. Alison Saenz started things off with an infield single, and Myrick sent one into left field. The two then each stole a base, and Saenz came in on a throwing error. Sturm came to the plate and grounded out to short, but the play allowed Myrick to score for a 2-0 Lady Bear lead. Martinez doubled to left, and Mikes reached on a fielder’s choice. Mikes then scored on a double to right off the bat of Annie Roswell.
La Vernia’s 3-0 lead didn’t last long, as Navarro drew a couple of walks and added a couple of hits to score a two-out run. With the score at 3-1, La Vernia wasted no time making it a 4-1 game in the second inning as Kailee Wegehaupt reached on a fielder’s choice, and later ran home on an error.
La Vernia added a 5th run in the bottom of the third as Mikes doubled, Renee Cummings hit a single, and then Wegehaupt singled to left to score Mikes.
The 5-1 Lady Bear lead held until the top of the fifth inning when Navarro caught fire. A walk started a La Vernia tumble, as Navarro rallied to score 4 runs and tie the game at 5-all.
The tie persisted until the bottom of the sixth inning when Myrick drew a walk, and Sturm drove her in with a hard-hit double into center field. The Lady Bears assumed a 6-5 lead, but Navarro came right back to score a run in the top of the seventh and tie the game at 6-6. La Vernia could not score in the bottom of the frame and the game went into extra innings.
In the bottom of the eighth inning, with the score still tied at 6-6, Saenz drew a walk to get things started for La Vernia. Myrick then grounded out, but moved Saenz over to third. Sturm came to the plate and looked at a ball on the first pitch. The second came her way and she popped it up into center field. Saenz tagged up at third, and then raced home ahead of the throw to score the winning run at 7-6.
The victory gave the Lady Bears a region quarterfinal playoff win, and advances the team into the region semifinals.
La Vernia will face King this weekend at Judson High School in Converse. Game one in the best-of-three series will be played Friday, May 16, at 7 p.m. Game two will be Saturday, May 17, beginning at 2 p.m. If a third game is necessary, it will be played 30 minutes after game two.