THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
M-O's Best Get Booted
Peshtigo Bopped By Bonduel 7-6 In D-3 Semis; Wausaukee Falls To Three Lakes In D-4 Finals
It was a disappointing day on the softball diamonds as the co-champions of the M-O Conference, Peshtigo and Wausaukee, were booted off the WIAA post-season trail.
The Bulldogs saw an 11-3 season come to a screeching halt in the Division 3 regional semifinals with a 7-6, 8-inning loss to visiting Bonduel. Peshtigo came into the tournament as the top seed, but left after one game as Bonduel, the 5th seed, knocked off its second straight M-O team after disposing of Crivitz in round one 9-0.
The results in D-4 were just as bad as Wausaukee saw a successful 15-5 season end in an 8-4 title game loss to Three Lakes.
-Division 3 Results-
In D-3 Semis 7-6
Heading into the top of the seventh Thursday, the Bulldogs found themselves up 3-1 and looking to put away the Bonduel Bears in the regional semifinals.
Instead, the wheels came off what looked to be, up until that point anyway, a Peshtigo softball machine firing on all cylinders. Bonduel's rally in the seventh netted the visiting crew five runs to rocket them to the top of the scoreboard 6-3.
"We played seven of the eight innings really well," said Peshtigo head coach Tom Christensen. "The seventh got away from us. We took a 3-1 lead into that inning and ran into trouble. It was a combo of errors and bad choices."
The heartbreaker didn't stop in the seventh for the Bulldogs, who finished the regular season atop the M-O conference for good reason. They're a tough team and that toughness came through in the bottom of the seventh. Down to their last out, the Bulldogs got the spark they needed as Ryleigh Klaver scored on an error. Peshtigo pitcher Maizie Reif, clearly unhappy with the events that took place just a half inning prior, brought in a run to pull her team to within one and then scored moments later on a seriously clutch stand at the plate from Dani Zahn to tie the score at six and push the game into the eighth inning.
Remember though...the game's not over and there's more heartbreak on tap for the Peshtigo faithful.
The Bears picked up in the eighth where they left off in the seventh, which is to say they were effectively getting on base. Bonduel's Courtney Schmidt reached with one out in the books thanks to an error and then quickly advanced to second on an errant pitch. Next up was Sam Bierbors and she promptly tagged a Reif fastball into left center to bring Schmidt across the plate for the game winning run.
"This was a heartbreaking loss and will take some time to get over," said Christensen. "The girls were a great group to work with this year and we'll miss the seniors."
-Division 3 Results-
To Three Lakes
The storybook season came to a close Thursday as the Wausaukee girls played host to Three Lakes and came out on the short end of the 8-4 scoreboard readout.
The Rangers had control of this one early on as they put up three runs in the opening frame thanks largely to RBIs from Kaylor DeLaet and Lauren Edlbeck.
But errors and mistakes would be the story of Wausaukee's downfall as the Bluejays turned several Wausaukee miscues into scores and went on to take the lead for good in the fourth. The uprising saw the Rangers commit four errors as Three Lakes jumped out to a 6-3 lead.
Edlbeck brought in another run in the fifth to cut the deficit in half but Wausaukee could get no closer. The Wausaukee junior had a solid day on the mound despite the loss, fanning six of the 33 batters she faced on the day while giving up no walks in the process.