Reed City softball team sweeps Pine River

REED CITY — Even though it was a nonconference doubleheader, the Reed City and Pine River softball played Tuesday’s twinbill like it was the final game of the season as the Coyotes clawed out two victories over the Bucks.

The Coyotes (2-0) pulled out a 1-0 victory in the opener before earning an 11-10 walk-off win in the nightcap after Reed City’s Lindsey Greer ended the game with a walk-off two-RBI double in the bottom of the eighth inning.

“Our girls played outstanding defense (Thursday), especially considering these were our first games of the season,” Reed City coach Roger Steig said. “This girls don’t get too rattled, no mater what happens. They kept their composure and they played two good ballgames. Pine River is never an easy team to go against and they gave us a good battle.”

Reed City won each game in contrasting ways, with the first game being a pitching duel between Reed City’s Julianne Griffin and Pine River’s Brooke Pennington.

The two pitchers stymied each offense through the first three innings, but the Coyotes got the eventual game-winning run in the bottom of the fourth when Brittani Yarger executed a sacrifice bunt to drive in Ally Yarger from third.

The Bucks (2-4) were able to get four hits and a walk in the final three innings, but those baserunners would never get home as the Coyotes held on for the one-run victory.

Griffin was the winning pitcher for the Coyotes after giving up seven hits and two walks while striking out seven in seven innings. Pennington took the loss for the Bucks after only giving up two hits and a walk while striking out four in six innings.

Alexis Stokely led the Bucks offensively with two hits while Griffin and Ally Yarger both accounted for the Coyotes’ two hits.

While the first game was a pitching duel, both teams got the bats going in the second contest.

The Bucks got things started in the top of the first when the they scored on an error to take the early 1-0 lead, but the Coyotes retaliated with an RBI single from Taylor Steig in the bottom half of the first to knot the score at 1-1.

Pine River would take a 3-1 lead in the top of the second with RBI doubles from Erin Millen and Morgann Kanouse and would add another run in the top of the third when Stokely scored on an error to make it 4-1 heading into the bottom of the third.

Reed City would get an RBI single from Brittani Yarger and Ally Yarger would later advance to home on when Brittani Yarger attempt a steal to allow Ally Yarger to get home from third and cut the deficit to 4-3.

The Bucks would add another run in the top of the fourth with an RBI single from Pennington to push their lead to two, but the Coyotes would use a five-run rally in the bottom half of the inning to take an 8-5 lead.

That run began with an RBI single by Ally Yarger, followed by an RBI double from Brittani Yarger and an in-the-park home run by Skiler Brigham that drove in herself and another runner.

The Bucks wouldn’t be denied, though, as they came right back with a two-RBI single from Pennington in the top of the sixth and an RBI-double by Millen to knot the score at 8-8 after seven innings to head to extra innings.

Kanouse hit a two-RBI single in the top of the eighth to give the Bucks a two-run lead, but Reed City clinched the victory in the bottom half of the inning when Katianne Hansen hit an RBI single to help set up Greer’s game-winning double.

Greer led the Coyotes offensively with three hits while Ally and Brittani Yarger and Taylor Steig each had two hits apiece.

Kanouse led the Bucks with four hits, including two doubles, while Pennington and Jenna Johnson each had three hits.

As the winning pitcher, Griffin gave up 13 hits and four walks while striking out three in eight innings. Stokely took the loss for the Bucks on the mound in the nightcap, giving up 12 hits and four walks while striking out six.

“I’m super proud of the job the girls did (Thursday),” Pine River coach Laura Mumby said. “We just ran out of innings in that first game. The girls just kept battling all night long and you have to give credit to Reed City for pulling those games out.”

The Coyotes are scheduled to be at Cadillac Wednesday and home Friday with Morley Stanwood.