The Van-Far Lady Indians softball team knew that if they were going to repeat as district champions they would have to get past Clopton, the No. 1 seed, a squad that beat them twice the week before.
The finals showdown was set after both teams combined to win their semifinal games, 27-0.
Against the Lady Hawks, five errors didn’t help Van-Far’s upset efforts. Two errors helped Clopton score three runs in the bottom of the second inning. Another error helped the Lady Hawks in their three-run fifth inning.
Clopton retired all three of Van-Far’s batters in the Lady Indians’ final at-bat to win the district title.
Jayle Jennings had the team’s lone base hit in the loss.
She also picked up the loss on the mound after tossing six innings but allowed no earned runs on four hits with one strikeout.
“Against Clopton we just didn’t bring our ‘A’ game,” said Van-Far head coach Kelly Orf. “Our timing was off at the plate and we had a few errors defensively. Even though districts didn’t turn out the way we hoped, we had an outstanding season. We are still young and the girls and I are already thinking about next year. We are going to miss our two seniors (Jayda Borgmeyer, Alexis DeTienne) and Coach (Wes) Rowden tremendously next year. They all have been a great asset to our team and will be hard to replace. Coach Rowden has dedicated himself to this program for many years and made a huge impact on the girls and myself. He has been a great mentor, coach, and friend and we all will miss him at Van-Far.”
In the first round of districts, the Lady Indians scored 10 runs in the bottom of the first inning to beat the host team from New Haven, 15-0.
In their big first inning, both Jayda Borgmeyer and Jennings had RBI doubles, Alexis DeTienne and Gina Clausen each added RBI singles, and Jordan Garner had a two-run home run.
The Lady Indians added three more runs in the third inning as Reaghan Case picked up one RBI on her ground-out that scored Clausen. Carleigh Phillips and Borgmeyer also scored runs in the inning.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, MaKayla McAfee and Jennings each added RBI singles in the four-inning win.
Clausen led the Lady Indians with two hits, three RBIs, and two runs scored. Garner had two hits, two RBIs, and three runs scored; McAfee tallied three hits, two runs scored, and two RBIs; Borgmeyer had three hits, two RBIs, and two runs scored; Jennings had three hits and two RBIs; Phillips scored three runs; Case had one RBI and one run scored; DeTienne added two RBIs and one run scored; and Alivia Graddy scored one run.
Jennings picked up the win after tossing four innings and allowing no earned runs on two hits with three strikeouts.
“Against New Haven we were on fire both offensively and defensively,” Orf said. “We hit the ball extremely well and Jayle dominated on the mound with only allowing two hits.”