Eyeing the ball

NCCC’s Kirsten Birdwell attempts to level a pitch versus Fort Scott.

Neosho softball secured its 11th win of the year after sweeping a doubleheader versus Fort Scott on Friday at home.

In Game 1, Neosho won 10-9 in extra innings thanks to a walk-off sacrifice fly by Espy Daniels. The sac fly improved NCCC to 11-16 on the year.

“I mean, I knew she had to give me something because we already had two baserunners. If she would have walked me, it would have been bases loaded,” Daniels said. “I just knew I had to hit the ball hard, hit it out of the infield so (Lydia Brown) can score – she’s right there on third base.”

Brown said the feeling couldn’t be matched.

“It was awesome. We were in the dugout thinking, ‘This is it, this is our inning,’” Brown said. “I thought to myself, ‘This may come down to you.’ And it did. It was a dream.”

But it was an uphill battle for NCCC after being down 9-5 in the bottom of the seventh. Then, Katie Boline hit a two-run home run, Mallory Gazaway stroked a solo home run, and Chelsey Hughes doubled in the inning before scoring on an error to second.

Boline was 3 for 4 with five RBI, Daniels went 2 for 4 with two RBI, Lauren Fuller hit 2 for 3 with an RBI and Hannah Duin was 2 for 4. 

Both teams racked up 14 hits. NCCC had five errors to Fort Scott’s two.


Game 2

 The Panthers blew out Fort Scott 21-5 in Game 2 on Friday.

Kirsten Birdwell hit 3 for 4 with four RBI, Journee Zito was 3 for 4 with three RBI, Gazaway tallied a 3-for-3, three-RBI day, Olivia Cummings was 3 for 3 with four RBI, and Daniels ended the day at 2 for 4.

NCCC racked up 18 hits to Fort Scott’s three. Fort Scott had seven errors to NCCC’s four.

The Panthers (11-16, 2-6) will next play Cloud at 1 and 3 pm on Saturday on the road.

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