Versailles softball scores five in final inning for comeback win over Tri-Village


By Drew Terhall

VERSAILLES — The Lady Tigers went into the bottom of the seventh inning down 9-5. The Lady Patriots just scored three runs in the top of the seventh to extend their lead before Versailles could get to the plate.

But after a few hits and a few runs were scored, senior Reagan Brown was the hero of the game as she got the game winning two-run hit to seal the 10-9 comeback win at home over Tri-Village.

Versailles head coach Tatyana Cotrell said she told her team before that final inning to just put the ball in play. With their backs against the wall, they did just that.

“I told my girls coming into that final inning we need to be productive. Continue to get contact, that’s all we needed. I don’t care if you swing for the fences, just on the ground. That’s all we needed,” Cotrell said.

Tri-Village head coach Emily Osborne said this game was a good test for her young team and it’s something they can learn from. It was a back and forth game where momentum swung back and forth. The Lady Patriots are still learning how to stop those momentum swings when it’s benefiting their opponents.

“We talked before we came into this game that if the momentum swings, we need to be to swing it back in our favor. It is a young team that needs to learn how to do that and fight until the end. We haven’t had to do that yet,” Osborne said.

Tri-Village scored in the first inning off a hit from sophomore Camryn Osborne. Versailles tied the game in the bottom of the second inning when Brown drove in a run on a RBI double.

The Lady Patriots responded in the top of the third inning with back to back RBI from freshman Emma Greer and senior Kiersten Wilcox.

After a slow start at the plate, the Lady Tigers started to put more balls in play. In the bottom of the third, those balls started to translate to runs.

Senior Lydia Hecht hit a double to drive in a run. Senior Jenna Dirksen tied the game, 3-3, with a sacrifice groundout. Senior Lauryn Cordonnier gave Versailles a 4-3 lead off a sacrifice flyout.

The Lady Tigers were playing their first game since they opened the season on March 23 with a double header against Franklin Monroe.

Cotrell said the team worked on cleaning up some mistakes from those games and overall improve for the tough games they have ahead. The work paid off in this game.

“Practicing this week, we just worked on things that we needed to make up from last week and then looking at our play ahead. That’s what helped us within those last couple of innings,” Cotrell said.

Then Tri-Village fought back with two big innings at the plate. In the top of the fifth inning, Greer drove in another run to tie the game, 4-4. Wilcox then hit a shot to deep center for a two-run home run.

After the Lady Patriots sent a lot of shallow fly balls to the Versailles defense, the team made adjustments their second and third time around.

Osborne said the team is constantly trying to find ways to adjust during the game. It all starts with their senior leader in Wilcox.

“They’re always checking in, ‘What can I do different?’ That’s the team we want to have. Somebody that’s willing to work hard at making adjustments in the middle of a game that need to happen,” Osborne said. “Kiersten is one of those. She’s a senior. She’s a leader. She’s always been solid at the plate. We’re thankful to have her for another year, healthy.”

Versailles added one run in the bottom of the fifth on an error. Then in the top of the seventh, the Lady Patriots scored three runs. Osborne, Wilcox and sophomore Tai Mize all helped drive in a run.

Then it was Versailles turn to win or tie the game. Senior Colleen Hiestand started the inning with a hit and everyone followed suit.

Senior Kailey Jenkinson drove in a run on a sacrifice groundout to make it 9-6. Dirksen got a RBI to make it 9-7. With two outs, senior Cassie Leach drove in a run off a double to make it 9-8.

From there, Brown stepped up to the plate and delivered the game-winning hit.

Osborne said the team hit well and played well, but the five errors they had is not them. Those errors led to some runs. The same can be said for Versailles. Cotrell said they had a few errors that led to some runs for Tri-Village, but their bats were able to make up for it.

Hiestand started the game for Versailles and pitched 6.2 innings and had six strikeouts. Hecht came in to finish the game.

For Tri-Village, sophomore Elizabeth Poling started and pitched five innings and had five strikeouts. Greer pitched the rest of the way.

The Lady Tigers are 3-0 on the season with this win. They will head to Benjamin Logan on March 30 for a double header and then play at Miami East on April 1. They will start the doubleheader at 11 a.m. and then start the game at Miami East at 5 p.m.

Cotrell said this win could give the team a boost in confidence and energy going into these stretch of games.

“It keeps us up on a high, especially going into tomorrow’s game against Benjamin Logan. Hopefully with this adrenaline rush, we’ll pick it up,” Cotrell said.

Osborne said the team just needs to put it all together at the same time. They showed they can hit, pitch and field just not all well for a full game.

The Lady Patriots will host Brookville on April 1 and then head to Tri-County North on April 2. Both games are set for a 5 p.m. first pitch.

Contact Daily Advocate sports editor Drew Terhall at [email protected]

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