Dutch Fork rallies late to stun Bengals

BLYTHEWOOD- The Blythewood softball team was two outs away from closing out a victory over Region 5-5A rival Dutch Fork Thursday night.

But after Morgan McMahon grounded out in the bottom of the seventh, the Silver Foxes bats came to life.

Dutch Fork sent 10 batters to the plate and rallied for six runs to take an 8-4 lead, then closed out an 8-5 victory over the Bengals at Blythewood stadium.

“The last two times we played them here, we had walk-off wins,” Blythewood head coach Jordan Atkinson said. “You felt like it was coming, but it didn’t.”

Blythewood (1-2 overall, 1-1 region) held a 4-2 lead going into the final inning, and with one out, the Bengals looked to get both the inning and game over with. That is, until Meghan Stolzenbach singled, Kyla Koch was hit by a pitch, and Madison Stone smacked a long fly ball that bounced off the fence in right field for a 3-run home run.

With the Silver Foxes up 5-4, they kept swinging. Blythewood pitcher Emily Babbitt issued a two-out walk to Sidney Moss, then gave up back-to-back doubles from Morgan Scott and Carolyn Lusk. Lusk’s hit drove in both Moss and Scott to give the Silver Foxes a 7-4 lead. Lusk came in on Hannah Putlock’s single.

After McMahon walked and Stolzenbach ended the inning flying out to right field, Blythewood got a run in the bottom of the seventh. Kendall Parker led off with a double, and after two infield pop-ups, Sammy Hall singled her in. Savannah Simpson closed out the game striking out.

“Two-strike hitting was phenomenal today,” Atkinson said. “A lot of line drives going to the opposite field, we got robbed of a home run in right. We played hard, but unfortunately in the seventh inning, you’ve got to get those last two outs.”

Backed with solid defensive play, Babbitt worked a complete game on the mound. She scattered five hits and struck out two over the first six innings. Three of those hits came in the second inning, when the Silver Foxes loaded the bases but failed to get a run across.

Meanwhile, the Bengals kept poking at Stolzenbach, the Dutch Fork pitcher.

Blythwood took a 1-0 lead when Babbitt reached on an error and then scored on Faith Manley’s single into short centerfield. Manley was tagged out at second on the play, and while Erin Goff doubled and Grace Campbell singled, Kendall Parker and Sammy Hall both struck out to retire the side.

Dutch Fork tied it up with a run in the top of the fourth, but the Bengals took a 2-1 lead when Courtney Watts delivered Grace Campbell to the plate with a 2-out single.

Koch led off the top of the fifth with a solo home run to left field to even the game at 2, but Blythewood took a 4-2 lead in the bottom of that frame.

Manley, Parker, and Goff hit back-to-back-to-back one-out singles, and Manley scored on Goff’s hit. After Campbell flied out for the second out, the inning looked to have ended when Hall struck out.

Except Dutch Fork catcher Jenna Elkins lost the ball. When Elkins found a handle on it and threw to first, no Silver Fox was on the bag, and Parker scored the second run of the inning.

Simpson grounded out to Stolzenbach to end the inning, but it appeared that Blythewood had the game well in hand.

But after a scoreless sixth, Dutch Fork swung away and spoiled the Bengals hopes for victory.

The Bengals played in the Byrnes Tournament last weekend.

 

 

York    000      110      6          –           8 10 0

Blythewood     100      120      1          –           5 12 2

WP: Meghan Stolzenbach. LP: Emily Babbitt.

Hitters: Dutch Fork – Morgan Scott 3-4, 2B. Hannah Putlock 2-4. Kyla Koch HR. Madison Stone HR. Blythewood – Emily Babbitt, 2-4, 3B. Kendall Parker 2-4, 2B. Erin Goff 2-4, 2B. Faith Manley 2-4.