They were hitting the ball and getting on base. They just weren’t touching the one that puts runs on the scoreboard.
But No.14 Scottsdale Chaparral kept pushing and finally broke through in the top of the seventh inning, scoring two runs on an error. Chaparral held on from there to upset top-seeded Glendale Mountain Ridge 2-0 in a state tournament elimination game Tuesday night at Rose Mofford Softball Complex in Phoenix.
Chaparral advances to play No.8 Phoenix Horizon in another elimination game Wednesday. Winner goes on to the semifinals.
With no outs and the bases loaded, Kendra Coleman hit an 0-2 pitch right to Mountain Ridge third baseman Corrin Green, who threw home to get the force out but the ball was dropped to allow Natalie Cravens and Kayla Bellaire to score the game’s only runs.
“We left a million runners on base, we had a million chances to score,” Chaparral coach Stefanie Ewing said. “When we had runners in scoring position, we were just trying to do too much earlier in the game. In games like this, as the game goes on, pressure increases. And you just have to do little things. Kendra did a great job and battled just to put something in play. In that situation, we had the three fastest kids on our team on the bases.”
Said Mountain Ridge coach Michele Markham: “We’ve had fantastic defense all season, but this is how May is. Anything can happen. Crazy things do. We put pressure on them all game. They put pressure on us all game. And they finally made something happen.”
Mountain Ridge had a chance to score first in the bottom of the sixth inning with two on and one out and Green, its best hitter, at the plate. But Chaparral pitcher Dallas McBride struck out Green on a 2-2 pitch then got a groundout to end the inning.
“She’s on fire right now,” Ewing said of McBride. “She wants it. That was huge to get Corrin out in that situation.”
Momentum swung to Chaparral and set the stage for the top of the seventh.