WICHITA FALLS – The Windthorst Trojanettes and the Archer City Lady Cats shared the District 9-2A title during the regular season. Back in March the Lady Cats slipped by the Trojanettes 3-1. Windthorst in the second district matchup won in a 9 inning affair on a walk off hit by Mackenzie Gillispie 3-2. Both teams battled through some close calls in the playoffs to earn a spot in the Region I Finals. After Games 1 and 2 of the Regional Championship the series for the year stood at 2-2. One game remained to settle both the yearly series and the Regional Championship with a trip to the State Tournament in Austin on the line.
The Trojanettes prevailed in Game 3 with an 11-1 convincing victory to earn the trip to the UIL State Tournament. Game 1 went to Windthorst 9-0. The Lady Cats evened the series in Game 2 with a 5-4 win. Lady Cat Head Coach Mallory Mooney summed up her team’s season, “We started off with a 4 and 5 record and we hoped to get to the playoffs. Then we started to play well together and we figured out how to play as a team. When we battle through the playoffs I thought we had a chance to make it to state, but an injury set us back a little. We did the best we could. In Game 1 we just couldn’t hit or get anything going.”
The Game 3 loss ended the season for the Lady Cats. Early in the season most people felt a trip to the playoffs would be a successful season for Archer City. As it turned out they were a game away from a trip to the State Tournament. Congratulation to the Lady Cats on a great and exciting season.
Game 3 Summary
Lady Cat junior pitcher Victoria Rater, after a courageous winning performance in Game 2, entered the ring in Game 3 despite her nagging leg injury. The Trojanettes greeted her in the bottom of the first inning with a five run rally. Kora Pennartz got things started for Windthorst with a bunt single. Camryn Latham followed suit with another bunt single. With runners in scoring position Abby Brown delivered a double to center field to score Latham. Pennartz scored earlier on a Lady Cat error. Mackenzie Gillispie doubled to score Brown to give the Trojanettes a 3-0 lead with no outs. Singles by Blaire Schreiber and Robyn Pickel scored two more runs.
With just one out in the bottom of the first Vi Rater left the game. Emily Salyers entered the ring to try to slow down Windthorst’s offense. When the first inning was over the handwriting was on the wall for the most part. Archer City could not contain Windthorst’s hitters and the winning Trojanette pitcher, Laynie Brown, was in no mood to give the Lady Cats any room for a comeback. Salyers got out of the second inning with fly ball outs to Vanessa Rater and Vi Rater, who was in right field due to a lack of substitutes on the Archer City bench. Senior center fielder Sam Clements provided piggy-back rides to Rater between innings.
Laynie Brown cruised to the finish line after giving up a run in the top of the third. Archer City’s sole run scored on an Erica Guerra triple with Sara Kyle running for Rater, on base due to an error. The Trojanettes answered with 5 more runs in the bottom of the third to lead 10-1. The 5 runs came with 2 outs. Pickel drew a walk. Grace Hoegger hit a triple. Brynlee Wolf, Pennartz, and Latham hit consecutive singles to plate 5 runs.
L Brown allowed only 4 hits with 2 strikeouts. After Salyers worked for 2 and two-thirds innings for the Lady Cats, Vanessa Rater took over to complete the game. The 10 run rule was triggered when Kat Hand doubled to score Blaire Schreiber who singled earlier in the inning. The final was 11-1 after six innings. Every Trojanette in the lineup got a hit to tally 18 hits for the game.
Game 2 Summary
After putting up 9 runs in game one the chances of slowing the Trojanette hit parade down seemed unlikely. Victoria Rater, nursing an injured leg, had other plans. She did allow 13 hits, but scattered them over her 7 innings of work. She gave up only 4 runs. She got good backing from her defense as she battled through pain and the relentless Trojanette lineup. It was a pitching performance built on heart and guts as much as skill.
Windthorst got the first run when Kat Hand, courtesy runner for Roby Pickel scored on a Brynlee Wolf single in the top of the second inning. Pickel had earlier singled to get on base. The Lady Cats answered when Erica Guerra led off with a single. Emily Salyers double to drive in Guerra. A Windthorst error set the plate for Delaini Hanna, who hit a 2 RBI double to give the Lady Cats a 3-1 lead after two innings. The scored stayed 3-1 until the sixth inning.
The Trojanettes got 2 runs in the top of the sixth on a string of singles hit by Mackenzie Gillispie, Blaire Schreiber, Claire Hemmi, and Kora Pennartz. The Lady Cats got two runs of their own to keep a 5-3 lead after 6 innings. The two runs were a result of a lead-off single by Maddie Lopez. Salyers and senior Sam Clements both hit doubles to give Archer City the two run margin.
Abby Brown’s lead-off homerun in the top of the seventh tightened things up at 5-4, but Vi Rater, working with the adrenalin of the moment, got three strikeouts after that to seal the Game 2 victory to force another game.
Game 1 Summary
The Trojanettes were fired up in Game 1 showing it by jumping out to a 3-0 lead after two innings. A five run fourth and a run in the fifth gave Windthorst a 9-0 lead, the final score. Laynie Brown’s seven innings of shutout pitching included 5 strikeouts. She allowed 6 hits with no walks. The Trojanettes had 9 hits including doubles by Grace Hoegger, Kora Pennartz, and Mackenzie Gillispie. Vi Rater showed her respect for Abby Brown by walking her 3 times. She did get a hit in her one official at bat finishing with 2 RBIs. Gillespie was also credited with 2 RBIs. The Lady Cats were plagued by 3 errors and 8 free pass walks. Only 5 of the Windthorst runs were earned. Five runs would have been enough with L Brown in the ring shutting out the Lady Cats.