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Seward Shakes Off No-Hitter to Salvage Split

KSCB News - March 22, 2016 6:27 am

In a matchup featuring two teams swinging red hot bats in their past stretch of games, Monday’s doubleheader between Seward County and Trinidad State looked to be a high scoring affair. The opposite couldn’t have been more true. In game one of the twinbill, Trinidad State right hander Jessica Salbato spun a no-hitter against the Seward bats in a 2-0 Trojan win while the Lady Saints rebounded with a 4-3 win in game two, hanging on late to split the doubleheader.

Game one was dominated by the two pitchers early on. Neither team had a baserunner through the first two innings as the game breezed along in a scoreless tie.

Trinidad put the first runner on base with a 3rd inning walk, but Seward starter Kelly Kearney didn’t allow anything further as it remained a 0-0 game.

The Lady Saints went down in order for the third straight inning in their half of the 3rd and Kearney worked around a walk and an error behind her to keep all zeroes on the board in the top of the 4th.

The first hit of the game didn’t come until the 5th inning when the Trojans, the top home run hitting team in the country, popped a solo shot to give Trinidad a 1-0 lead.

The Lady Saints put their first runner on base in the bottom of the 5th as Kristyna Garcia walked and a Trojan error on the infield put two on with nobody out. A sacrifice bunt moved runners to second and third with one out, but the Lady Saints couldn’t push anything across, grounding out on the infield and striking out to end the inning and keep them behind 1-0.

A misplayed ball in the Seward outfield eventually cost the Lady Saints a run in the 6th as Trinidad extended their lead to 2-0.

Another Trinidad error gave the Lady Saints a chance to get back into the game in the bottom of the 6th, but Seward couldn’t do anything with it, leaving the runner on at innings end to keep it a 2-0 game in favor of the Trojans.

Kearney kept Trinidad in check in the 7th to again give the Lady Saints a chance in their final at bats, but a 1-2-3 inning in the bottom of the inning for Seward ended the game while giving Trojan pitcher Jessica Salbato a no-hitter.

The loss marked the first time all season that the Lady Saints were no-hit and the third time they have been shutout. Kearney suffered a tough luck loss, allowing just 3 hits and 1 earned run to the slugging Trojans, falling to 8-6 on the year in the circle.

SEWARD COUNTY/TRINIDAD STATE GAME ONE BOX SCORE<http://www.sewardsaints.com/sports/sball/2015-16/boxscores/20160321_iuc8.xml>

In the 1st inning of game two, the Trojans loaded the bases, but were unable to score, a missed opportunity that little known at the time, would come back to haunt them in a major way.

The Lady Saints wasted no time in taking out their game one frustrations on Trinidad in game two, getting an RBI single from Brittany Corrales and an RBI groundout from Garcia to jump in front of the Trojans 2-0 after one inning of action.

Seward was back at it in the 2nd as Corrales smashed a single to right with two outs and the bases loaded, scoring two more runs to push their lead to 4-0.

Lady Saint starter Jaidyn Mawhinney kept the powerful Trojan bats in check all afternoon, allowing just unearned runs in the 4th and 5th innings to keep Seward in control, up 4-2.

Unfortunately for Seward, their offense went ice cold after the first two innings, failing to score another run through the 6th inning as they clung to the 4-2 lead into the 7th and final inning.

The game looked like it might be over in the top of the 7th as Trinidad grounded into what looked like a tailor made double play ball, but an error on the throw to second instead put runners on the corners with just one out, putting the tying run on first and bringing the go ahead run to the plate. A single loaded the bases for Trinidad and a sacrifice fly brought a run home to make it a one run game at 4-3. Next up to the plate stepped Chelsey Runyon for Trinidad who entered the day with a .429 average and 7 home runs on the season. But on this day, Mawhinney was better, finishing the game in style, striking Runyon out to seal the 4-3 heart stopping win for the Lady Saints.

Seward outhit Trinidad 6-4 in the game, getting a 3 for 3 game from Taylor Kathler and 2 hits and 2 RBI’s from Corrales. Mawhinney put together her best pitching effort of the year, allowing just 4 hits and 3 unearned runs to improve to 6-7 on the year.

SEWARD COUNTY/GAME TWO BOX SCORE<http://www.sewardsaints.com/sports/sball/2015-16/boxscores/20160321_shok.xml>

The split moves Seward to 15-19 on the year while Trinidad State loses just their third game in a month, seeing their record go to 21-8.

The Lady Saints will now make their trip Northwest, going to Colby Friday and Northeastern Saturday for a four game swing before returning home next Tuesday for a battle with Lamar.

 

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