Softball: Kennedy hands Central Linn first loss
When it comes to Mount Angel athletics, revenge is a dish best served on a bun with plenty of sauerkraut.
The No. 3 Kennedy softball team knotted up the season series with the No. 1 Central Linn Cobras in an exciting 3-2 win last week that was decided on the final play of the game.
The victory helped Kennedy make up for a 13-2 loss to Central Linn earlier in the season that snapped a 29-game winning streak against league opponents that dated back to the 2016 season.
It also spoiled what had been a perfect season for the Cobras, who won their first 17 games of the season before falling to Kennedy on fielder's choice from Hannah Arritola that drove in the winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning.
Kennedy entered the bottom of the inning tied at 2-2 and opened with a single to centerfield from pinch hitter Grace Schaecher.
Schaecher advanced to second on an error off a fly ball hit by teammate Tressa Riedman, who was subbed out for courtesy runner Rylie Newton.
The two runners advanced to third and second, respectively, on a sacrifice bunt by Hailey Arritola, and after a line drive out by Molly Jaeger, Kennedy set the scene for its winning play.
With Hannah Arritola up to bat, the defending Conference Player of the Year drove a ground ball toward second base. Schaecher bolted toward home on the play, beating out the throw to give the Trojans the much-needed victory.
Riedman finished the game with seven strikeouts, holding the Cobras to five hits over seven innings in Central Linn's lowest-scoring game of the season.
Jaeger led the team on offense as the lone Kennedy player to log more than one hit, going 2-for-3 with a walk and and RBI that scored Newton in the bottom of the fifth that tied the game at 2-2.
Kalyssa Kleinschmit added the Trojans first run of the game, hitting a line drive in the bottom of the fourth after fouling off five previous pitches, scoring Emily Cuff to give Kennedy a 1-0 lead.
Central Linn responded with two runs in the top of the fifth to go up 2-1.
Following the win, Kennedy rolled over its next two opponents in the week, scoring back-to-back wins over Perrydale on May 2 by scores of 13-3 and 16-3, respectively, before finishing on Friday with a 17-2 win over the St. Paul Buckaroos.
With the win over Central Linn, Kennedy stayed in the race for its third straight conference title.
Should the Trojans and Cobras win their remaining league games, the Special District 2 champion will be crowned on Tuesday when the Cobras return to Mount Angel for the final contest in the three-game series.