Fairfield Ledger
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Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Oct 22, 2017

Trojans defeat Chiefs to advance

Fairfield will play Des Moines Hoover Tuesday at home
By Andy Hallman, Ledger news editor | Jul 10, 2017
Photo by: ANDY HALLMAN/Ledger photo Sara Trent smacks a two-run double to start the Trojan scoring. Fairfield gave up three runs in the top of the first but responded with four of its own in the bottom half.

The Trojan softball team will live to play another day ... and maybe more.

Fairfield defeated Keokuk 11-6 Saturday night at home to advance to the substate final against Des Moines Hoover. The Trojans will host Hoover at 7 p.m. Tuesday with a chance to play in the state tournament riding on the outcome.

Fairfield came into Saturday’s game having won all four contests against the Chiefs this season. That said, they knew Keokuk was no slouch, and the Chiefs proved it by grabbing a 3-0 lead before the fans could settle into their seats.

Those three runs in the top of the first were the most runs Keokuk had scored in a single game against Fairfield all year.

The Trojans wasted no time in climbing out of the hole Keokuk had dug for them. Sara Trent ripped a two-run double over the left fielder’s head to make the score 3-2 in the bottom of the inning. Later in the frame, Haley Beard poked an RBI single past the third baseman. Natalie Angstead followed that by reaching on an error when Keokuk’s second baseman fielded a grounder, tried to tag the runner from first, missed, then tossed the ball late to the shortstop covering the bag. Trent came around to score on the play to give the hometown team a 4-3 lead.

 

Solo shot

In inning No. 2, Kaylee Watson blasted a solo home run to left, whereupon she was mobbed by her teammates at home plate. Kenady Waugh doubled to the right-center field gap, and Trent followed with a walk, but a groundout ended the threat as the Trojans clung to a 5-3 lead after two innings.

In the third, courtesy runner Carly Ferrel scored on an infield hit to shortstop by Shay Drish to make the score 6-3 Trojans.

After a rocky start, Beard and the defense behind her settled down in the middle innings, giving Keokuk no real scoring opportunities in the second, third, fourth or fifth.

 

Keokuk makes it interesting

The Chiefs put together a rally in the sixth with a lead-off single up the middle, followed by a hit batter. After a fly out to center field, Aryn Kindig slapped an RBI double to put runners on second and third with only one out and cut Fairfield’s lead to 6-4. The Chiefs needed one more hit to the outfield to tie the game, but Beard would have none of it. With ice in her veins, Beard struck out the next batter. The following hitter grounded out to third, and first baseman Natalie Angstead made a nice play by digging the throw out of the dirt to end the threat.

 

Trojans put game away

The wheels came off for Keokuk in the bottom of the inning as the Trojans continued to strike the ball with authority and put pressure on the defense with their lightning speed. Brynna Bowman led off the inning with a double to center. Shay Drish singled to left and later stole second to put runners on second and third.

A groundout to shortstop prevented the runners from advancing. Next, Trojan coach Bob Bradfield dug into his bag of tricks and pulled out a suicide squeeze, which Bowman the runner and Watson the batter executed to perfection. Keokuk could see there was no chance of nabbing Bowman at the plate, so the throw went to first. The throw bounced off the fielder’s glove, allowing not only Bowman but Shay Drish to score and Watson to move to second.

Waugh was hit by a pitch to put runners at first and second, who moved up to second and third on a wild pitch. Trent struck out, but the ball got away from the catcher, allowing Watson to score. Because it was a dropped third strike, the defense had to throw to first to retire Trent, but the throw from the catcher was wild, allowing Waugh to score on the play, too.

After a pop-up, Beard knocked a pitch back up the middle to score the Trojans’ fifth run of the inning, making the score 11-4.

Keokuk got two runs in the seventh but got no closer as the Trojans celebrated a win on their home turf.

The Trojans’ next opponent, Des Moines Hoover, defeated Waterloo East 12-2 to earn its berth in the substate final. Hoover is 22-10 on the season, while Fairfield is 32-9.

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