Two days after Kali Rambo gave the Elma Eagles a walk-off win over a perennial state power they hadn’t defeated in four years, Kassedy Olson repeated the feat.
Olson’s game-winning bloop single to left field gave Elma a 3-2 victory over Pe Ell-Willapa Valley on March 28 in Elma, the last game before spring break.
With the game tied at two runs apiece in the bottom of the seventh inning, Elma got off to a promising start as Chloe Velasco worked a walk off of PWV pitcher Olivia Matlock.
Once on base, Velasco advanced to third on two passed balls with one out.
Matlock then struck out Jalyn Whipple and Olivia Cain as the contest appeared to be headed to extra innings.
Elma’s Emily Newberry kept the inning alive by working a walk, which set the table for Olson, who slapped a single that fell in front of Titans left fielder Presley Peterson.
Olson said the speed difference between Matlock who finished the game in the circle and Camryn Adkins didn’t throw off her timing.
“When I slap the ball, I can adjust really easily from a slower pitcher to a faster pitcher,” she said. “I either wanted to get it on the ground or into a gap.”
After breaking a four-year losing streak to Montesano on Tuesday, Elma head coach Roger Elliot said it felt good to beat another team that the Eagles hadn’t bested since 2015.
“Kassedy came up with a great hit. I don’t know if the girl lost it in the sun or if it was properly placed, but we’ll take it,” he said. “That’s another team that we struggled and it’s the first time we beat them in four years. That’s a really tough team.”
Before the Eagles could come up with the late-inning dramatics, they had to fight back after surrendering a pair of runs in the fourth inning.
PWV had a little trouble getting to Elma starting pitcher Destry Dineen and broke through in the fourth inning.
Britney Patrick started the inning off with a bang as her lead-off triple hit the fence in the left-center field gap. The Titans wasted no time driving her in as Matlock came up with an RBI double to give PWV the 1-0 lead. PWV expanded the lead to 2-0 when Matlock came around to score on a single from Jeorgi Ritzman.
After surrendering the second run of the inning Elliot made a pitching change, bringing Quin Mikel into the circle. Mikel stopped the bleeding and got a strikeout to end the inning and limit the damage.
Dineen helped spark the comeback with a lead-off single in the first and later came around to score.
An RBI single from Olson drove in Cain after she reached on error which allowed Elma to pull even.
The Titans also had opportunities to reclaim the lead in the fifth and sixth innings, but couldn’t take advantage of runners in scoring position.
The Eagles’ next game is 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 9, at Hoquiam.
Elma 6, Montesano 5
With one swing of the bat, Elma’s Kali Rambo gave the Eagles their first win over rival Montesano in four years.
Rambo’s bases-loaded single to left field in the bottom of the seventh gave Elma a 6-5 walk-off win on Tuesday in Elma.
Rambo said she could feel the momentum going their way when the Eagles started the seventh inning with a double off the bat of Olivia Cain.
“I was just looking for a base hit to score the runner from third. (Coach Ashley Stancil) always says that hits are contagious and once we get going it is hard to stop us,” she said. “(Montesano starter Lindsay Pace) pitched me inside and that’s my weak spot. The next pitch was right down the middle.”
Cain’s double led off the seventh inning and Chloe Clark followed with a single that moved Cain to third with no outs.
With runners on the corners, Montesano head coach Pat Pace elected to walk Kassedy Olson to load the bases for Rambo.
“At that point, with runners on first and third, it was a matter of them putting a bunt down to win the game or trying to get a force out at home,” Coach Pace said. “We were just hoping for a ground ball and Rambo did a great job stepping up when they needed her.”
The Bulldogs were protecting a 5-2 lead after scoring twice in the top of the fourth.
Elma got some timely hitting from Quin Mikel, who hit a two-run double down the left field line to cut into Monte’s lead in the bottom of the fourth.
Two batters latter, Desrty Dineen drove in Mikel with a shallow sacrifice fly, allowing Mikel to slide home and tie game at five.
Montesano never regained the lead they built in the first inning. The Bulldogs got off to a strong start with a two-run single from Janessa Otterstetter with two outs in the bottom of the first.
Coach Pace said his team could have pulled out the win if his players had taken advantage of more of their opportunities.
“We had our opportunities and we really dropped the ball, literally, on defense a couple of times,” he said. “We didn’t get the big hit when we needed it. I don’t think our focus was as good as Elma’s and when you play them, you have to play your best game.”
Montesano’s early scoring success came with Dineen in the circle. The senior hurler pitched the first four innings of the contest, surrendering five runs on five hits, along with four walks.
Mikel pitched the renaming three innings and allowed three base runners in three shutout innings of work.
Elma head coach Roger Elliot said Mikel’s pitching style was better suited for the umpire’s small strike zone.
“She throws a little closer to the plate and we had a tough strike zone to deal with. We wanted to get a few more calls here and there and it worked,” he said.
Elliot said a win like this is good for an Eagles team that had trouble believing in itself in previous matchups against the Bulldogs.
“It’s a nice win, so maybe that’ll get that out of their head a little bit because I think a lot of it has been mental over the past few years,” he said. “We’ve had a decent enough team to beat them. Maybe this will get them over the hump.”
Montesano’s game Tuesday, against Lakeside, ended too late for this edition. The Bulldogs’ next game is at 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 9, at home against Tenino.
Puyallup 16, Montesano 1
Montesano struggled against a powerful Puyallup offense in a 16-1 loss Saturday in Puyallup.
The Class 4A Vikings put the game away early with five runs in the first inning and seven in the second off Montesano starting pitcher Lindsay Pace.
Montesano scored its lone run of the game in the fourth inning when Matti Ekerson followed Katie Granstrom’s leadoff double with one of her own. Granstrom’s run cut the score to 13-2 and prevented the shutout.
Pace took the loss, allowing 10 earned runs on 12 hits with six strikeouts and seven walks.
Montesano’s defense committed five errors in the game, leading to six unearned Vikings runs.
Montesano 11, Hoquiam 1
The Montesano Bulldogs scored four runs in the first and got a strong pitching performance from Lindsay Pace en route to a win over Hoquiam on Thursday in Hoquiam.
Monte’s bats took no time to get going, scoring four runs in the top of the first inning, highlighted by Jessica Stanfield’s three-run home run.
Hoquiam responded with a run in the bottom half of the inning on a leadoff home run from Maya Jump.
But that was all the offense the Grizzlies would muster, as Pace would allow just two more hits and held Hoquiam scoreless the rest of the way.
Aberdeen 6, Centralia 4
Sierra Hammond willed the Bobcats to victory with an extra inning two-run single in Aberdeen’s 6-4 road win over Centralia on Friday.
The Bobcats secured the victory when Hammond’s late-game hit drove in Randi Stewart and Katelynn Smith to give the Aberdeen the lead in extra innings.
Jalyn McDaniel then pitched a clean eighth inning to secure the victory.
Aberdeen head coach Scott Wilson said it was good to see his team battle back in extras after falling behind early on.
“They’re definitely a scrappy little group,” he said. “They don’t give up and it’s a great thing to see out of them.”
Aberdeen will go on the road in search of its next league win when it faces WF West at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 9.