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Spirit Softball earn second place at league tournament

July 12, 2012

Broken Bow's Morgan Hueftle prepares to throw the ball back to pitcher Hannah Evans during warmups before a game against Ord during the league tournament July 7. Hueftle had three pickoffs during the tournament.

Broken Bow’s Kelsie Myers recently returned from a mission trip to
Haiti where she worked as a medical helper in a tent that cared for
the needy.
The Spirit were glad to have her back, as Myers gave the team the
right dose of strong hitting they needed to finish a strong second
place in the league tournament.
Spalding ended the team’s run with an 8-3 victory over the Spirit in
the championship game July 7th.
Myers batted 8-14 in the tournament, which is good for a .571 batting average.
In the team’s opening game against the Ord Greenies, Myers went 3-3
with two triples and a double and tallying six RBI’s in the Spirit’s
19-7 victory.
“She played really well,” coach Mike Holcomb said. “She was on fire
against Ord both games. She’s done well.”
Possessing great speed and a strong arm, Myers also helped out the
Spirit defensively in different spots when they needed it.
She played both shortstop and left field throughout the tournament
depending on who the opponent was.
Being able to move the players around to different spots speaks to
the teams depth.
“That’s the nice part about these girls, is that you can interchange
them,” Holcomb said. “I’ve got them to the point where it doesn’t
bother them where they are playing. They are buying into that and
that’s important.”
Spalding accounted for both of the Spirit’s losses in the double
elimination tournament.
They featured a disciplined squad that didn’t give the Spirit a lot
of chances to capitalize.
“They don’t make very many mistakes,” Holcomb said. “If you make a
mistake, it’s going to cost you. You have to minimize their mistakes
and capitalize on the few that they do give you.”
In the championship game, the Spirit couldn’t get much momentum
going against arguably the tournament’s toughest pitcher. Third
basemen Tressa Ripp went 1-3 with a single while catcher Morgan
Hueftle and pitcher Hannah Evans each finished the game with a single.
Broken Bow earned a spot in the championship game with a win over
theOrd Greenies.
After beating the same team 19-7 earlier in the tournament, they had
to withstand a furious rally by Ord in the 7th inning to hang on.
The Spirit entered the 7th inning with an 11-4 lead, but Ord found
their bats in that inning and were helped out by some breakdowns in
concentration from the Spirit.
They cut the score to 11-10 before Sydney Holcomb reigned in a ball
in center field with runners on second and third to help the team hang
on for the victory.
Shortstop Kassie Russell finished the game with four singles and an
RBI as part of a strong team hitting performance.
Kelsie Myers finished the game with two RBI’s to go with her single
and double in that game.
Pitcher Hannah Evans also recorded two RBI’s on a couple of sacrifice hits.
Broken Bow also played the Ord Greenies in the opening round game of
the tournament.
Myers used the Greenies as her personal pinata.
She finished the game with two triples and a double and tallied six RBI’s.
It was a strong performance from top top to bottom offensively for the Spirit.
The first four batters in the lineup each crossed the plate four times.
Ripp, Russell, Sydney Holcomb and Myers combined to go 11-18 over the
course of five innings.
The Spirit also earned a victory over Sargent/Burwell during the
league tournament. Catcher Morgan Hueftle kept the speedy S/B team at
bay with two pickoff throws to second base.
The second was for the game winning out that sealed a 6-4 victory.
Evans was strong on the mound as well, striking out six batters in
her full seven innings of work.
Holcomb, Myers, Evans and Hanna Lane finished the game with at least
one RBI each.
With the state tournament two weeks away, the Spirit seemed to have
found their groove offensively.
Having Myers back in the states and on the field is certainly going
to bolster the team’s hitting strengths.
“We’ve been joking around at practice that it was the beans and rice
that did it for me,” Myers said of what is fueling her offensive
prowess.
While the team was happy with how they finished, they know there are
still some improvements they have to make in order to make a deep run
in the state tournament.
“We need to do a better job of sticking together as a team and
cheering each other on,” Russell said. “We need to not get each other
down and just keep working hard because we know we can do it.”

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