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Cowgirls split with Ravens


Crook County wins game one, Ridgeview comes back to win second game setting up a one-game showdown on Friday in Redmond

Softball fans were treated to a pair of exciting games Wednesday afternoon as the Crook County Cowgirls and Ridgeview Ravens split a doubleheader.

The host Cowgirls came from behind to win the first game 5-4. However, a comeback attempt in game two came up short as the Ravens took a 9-6 win. The split sets up a showdown between the two teams Friday in Redmond with the winner earning the Special District I championship and a guaranteed play-in contest.

“Both sides made errors and we just capitalized a little bit more in game one,” said Crook County Head Coach Jessica Cross. “I mean we got it when it counted the most. We got a little comfy going into the top of the seventh inning of game two and they got some crucial hits. We came out and fired back, we just didn’t get as many.” by: LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Aspen Christiansen tags a Ridgeview runner out at home during the second game of the Cowgirls' doubleheader Wednesday afternoon with the Ravens.

Ridgeview came out firing in the top half of the first inning. The Ravens blasted a triple and a double in the inning. However, Crook County pitcher Emily Benton pitched out of trouble, giving up just one run in the inning.

Crook County tied the game in the bottom of the third. Jena Ovens bunted to open the inning. Ovens went from first all the way to third base on a sacrifice bunt by Kelsee Martin, then scored on a ground out to the pitcher.

Ridgeview answered with a run in the fourth inning as the Cowgirls made a series of errors. The Ravens added two more runs in the fifth, on a home run blast by Erin Ware(need to get players name) to take a 4-1 lead. The Cowgirls responded with three runs of their own in the bottom of the fifth to tie the game as the Ravens made three errors in the inning.

The Cowgirls scored the game-winning run in the sixth when the Ravens made another error. Ovens hit what looked like a routine pop up to center field. However, the centerfielder dropped the ball and a hustling Ovens ran all the way to second. Ovens scored one play later as Martin ripped a single up the middle.

From there, Benton closed out the game as the Cowgirls earned the win.

The Cowgirls finished with nine hits in the contest compared to eight hits by the Ravens. Bailee Wood was 3 for 3 in the contest, while Kaylee Johnson-Wright was 2 for 3 with a double.

Both teams committed four errors in the game, while Benton struck out three and walked just one Raven batter.

Ridgeview came out hot to start game two, scoring three runs in the first inning. The big hit of the inning was Ware’s second homer of the game. However, Benton who was pitching both games of a doubleheader for the first time all year, settled down and took control, limiting the Ravens to just one more run in the next five innings.

The Cowgirls scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the third. Ovens and Benton had singles in the inning while Aspen Christiansen ripped a double.

Crook County added another run in the bottom of the sixth to make the score 4-3. However, the Cowgirls could easily have scored more runs in the frame. After scoring the run Crook County had the bases loaded with nobody out. But a weak pop up and a line drive that turned into a double play helped the Ravens escape the inning with no further damage.

Ridgeview then scored five runs in the seventh inning to seemingly take control of the contest with a 9-3 lead.

But the Cowgirls weren’t finished yet. Christiansen started the bottom of the seventh inning off with a single. Johnson-Wright doubled, scoring Christiansen, then scored on a Wood double. Karlee Hollis tripled scoring Wood to make the score 9-6. Unfortunately the Cowgirls were unable to continue the rally and the Ravens escaped with a win.

Ridgeview blasted 12 hits in the contest, most coming in the first and seventh innings. The Cowgirls countered with 10 hits of their own. Ovens was 3 for 4 while Christiansen went 2 for 3. Although she gave up the 12 hits, Benton also struck out seven batters while walking just two.

“She threw really well,”?Cross said. “Every once in a while she would leave something hanging out over the middle and they got a hold of them, but I’m happy with her performance.”

The big difference in the game was mistakes as the Cowgirls made five errors in the contest, including three in the pivotal seventh inning.

The two games failed to settle anything. Both teams are still tied for first in the Intermountain Hybrid League with 6-2 league records. The two teams are 1-1 in Special District I. The Cowgirls are 13-4 overall for the year, while the Ravens are 10-4. However, Ridgeview is ranked sixth in the latest power rankings, while the Cowgirls are in 16th place.

Friday’s deciding game is scheduled for 4 p.m.

“We are ready for Friday and we know what to expect,” Cross said. “The girls performed so well today that I have a lot of faith that they can take the game as long as they come out a little bit stronger.”

Game 1

Crook County 5,

Ridgeview 4

Ridgeview 1 0 0 1 2 0 0 — 4 8 4

Crook County 0 0 1 0 3 1 0 — 5 9 4

Game 2

Ridgeview 9,

Crook County 6

Ridgeview 3 0 0 0 1 0 5 — 9 12 3

Crook County 0 0 2 0 0 1 3 — 6 10 5