By Ronn Rowland
Phoenix Sports Writer
SHAWNEE – Early on in the Class 3A fastpitch championship game, it looked as though the Sequoyah Lady Indians would finally get over the hump and bring home a title.
That was until the mistakes came calling, helping the Washington Lady Warriors to a 5-3 win on Saturday at The Ball Fields at Firelake.
Mistake number one came in the bottom of the fourth with Sequoyah leading 2-0 and runners on second and third with one out for the Lady Warriors. Kelsey Harmon dropped down a squeeze bunt which got Dagan Lampkin across with Washington’s first run. In an attempt to get Lampkin, Sequoyah pitcher Katie Phillips flipped the ball over the head of catcher Baylee Ratliff, allowing Brooke Rains to race home and tie the score at 2-2.
“That’s their game,” said Sequoyah coach Jeff Turtle. “They slap bunt and put pressure on you. They make you field it from the plate to the mound. And we didn’t do a very good job of it today.”
After Washington had added two more runs in the fourth, the Lady Indians got a run back in the top of the fifth to make the score 4-3 when mistake number two happened. During the Lady Warriors’ at bat in the fifth, Megan Towie muffed a throw from Phillips allowing Brittany Ball to reach safely. Lampkin followed that with a fly to center that Merissa Smith dropped to put runners on first and second and Ball would eventually come home on a bunt by Callie Busby for the final run of the game.
“This is not the way I wanted to end,” said Sequoyah senior Kelsey Leach. “I’m going to miss everybody, especially miss the coaches. I’ve been with them for four years and they’ve helped me through a lot.”
The Lady Indians (34-7) got on the board first in the second inning when Sydney Smith and Merissa Smith both reached on one-out walks. After Jaycie Harvey struck out, Jamie Linch walked to load the bases and Leach doubled of the glove of Harmon at third, bringing home both Smiths to give Sequoyah a 2-0 lead after two innings.
In the bottom of the second, the Lady Warriors (25-8) looked like they were going to score when the first two batters reached base. However, Leach used her glove at shortstop to squash the rally, one catch on a pop-up for the first out of the frame and the other a diving catch, which she turned into a double play to end the threat.
Trailing 4-2, the Lady Indians would cut the deficit in half in the top of the fifth. Symphoni Shomo induced a one-out walk and Megan Towie reached on an infield single. After receiving the throw at first from Lampkin at shorstop on Towie’s single, Rains fired back to second trying to catch Shomo too far off the base and threw the ball into left field, allowing Shome to come home and make the score 4-3.
Leach’s double and Towie’s single were the only hits allowed by Wells as she finished the game five strikeouts. Phillips started in the circle for Sequoyah and gave up eight hits, two earned runs and struck out three.
“It was just one of those games were things didn’t go right,” Turtle said. “They made every play they needed to make. We had some errors here and some errors there. It was just one of those days were we didn’t play well and they did. We didn’t pitch it very well, didn’t field it and their pitcher did a good job. We didn’t swing it very well like we had been.”