One of Vince Coons’ beliefs — that the more softball action the Iola High’s Fillies play, the better they’ll get — is bearing fruit.
The Fillies withstood a furious Osawatomie High rally in the first game of Tuesday’s doubleheader, a 12-11 win.
Then Iola fell behind early in the second game, but responded with a sixth-inning rally to win, 12-9.
The victories lift the Fillies to 3-3 on the season and 3-1 in Pioneer League play.
“A couple of great victories,” Coons said. “I’m proud of the girls.”
The second-game comeback was capped by Hannah Endicott’s two-run triple in the bottom of the sixth, putting the Fillies on top for the first time, 10-9.
Iola scored two in the fifth and four in the sixth to turn around an 8-6 deficit.
“Our pitchers threw strikes, and our batters did a good job of moving girls around. We still made a few errors in judgment on defense, but that will get better the more we get on the field.”
Osawatomie jumped out to a 6-2 lead by the third inning, with Iola’s runs coming when Ashlie Shields singled and scored in the first and Jadyn Sigg did the same in the second.
Iola rallied with three in the bottom of the fourth to cut the gap to 6-5. Katie Shields walked with one out to start the rally. Riley Murry followed with a single before Taylor Heslop reached on an error. Ashlie Shields followed with a double.
Osawatomie pushed back out to an 8-5 lead before Iola scored twice more in the fifth.
Endicott and Shelby Reno both singled to lead off the frame and came around to score, cutting the deficit to 8-7.
The lead was 9-7 when Heslop led off the bottom of the sixth with a single. Ashlie Shields reached on an error on the next play before Mackenzie Weseloh plated a run with a double. Endicott’s triple followed, giving the Fillies the lead. Reno walked. A wild pitch scored Endicott.
“Hannah’s hit was huge,” Coons said. “I’d been preaching patience at the plate, and of course she blasts the first pitch she sees down the line.”
The rally was cut short after McKayli Cleaver singled, but was called out for attempting to advance to second after the umpire ruled the Osawatomie pitcher had the ball back in the pitcher’s circle.
Weseloh worked around a two-out single before retiring the final Trojan batter on a ground ball.
She gave up four hits and five walks, while overcoming seven Iola errors.
Endicott had a single and triple, Ashlie Shields a single and double. Weseloh doubled. Adding singles were Reno, Cleaver, Katie Shields, Sigg, Murry and Heslop.
OSAWATOMIE jumped out to the early lead, 3-0, in the first game.
Katie Shields singled, Sigg walked and Murry reached on an error in the Fillies’ three-run second to tie the score. Trojan errors allowed both Endicott and Reno to reach base and score as Iola took a 5-3 lead in the third.
Two errors and a walk preceded Reno’s double and Cleaver’s triple. Katie Shields followed with a single as the Fillies led 10-4 after four innings.
Weseloh doubled and Endicott tripled as the lead ballooned to 12-6 after six.
Two errors among Osawatomie’s first three batters in the seventh inning kick-started a furious Trojan rally. Osawatomie cut the gap to 12-11 with the tying run on second before Reno fielded Suzy Waddle’s hard ground ball for the final out.
Endicott gave up seven hits and three walks. She struck out five.
Weseloh had a single and double, Endicott a triple, Reno a double and Katie Shields two singles.
The Fillies return home next Tuesday for a doubleheader with Prairie View.
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