ZACHARY — Archbishop Hannan softball coach Becky Lambert had seen this from her young team before.
Take a lead into the final innings only to see it gone with a home run.
Zachary brought the game-winning run to the plate in its last at-bat, but the Class 2A Hawks were able to hold on for an 8-7 nondistrict victory over Class 5A Zachary on Saturday afternoon.
“I had to have a lot of trust in my teammates to make the plays behind me,” Hawks starting pitcher Allie Hutton said. “(Zachary) had been through the order a couple of times, so I knew they were going to put the ball in play. Fortunately enough for us, my teammates had my back and made the defensive plays we need to win.”
Up 8-4 headed to the top of the seventh inning, Hutton retired Macie Pampell to lead off the inning. With one out, Hannan Dixon and Tegan Scott hit back-to-back singles. Baylie Dorion’s three-run homer over the left field wall made it 8-7.
Hutton retired Abby Lewis for the second out, but Lakyn Wales singled to bring the game-winning run to the plate. However, Britney Anderson fouled out for the third out to end the game.
“To this team’s credit, we learned from past experiences late in games where we lost in situations like this,” Hutton said. “It is simple stuff we changed to keep us going like keeping the energy in the dugout and not getting down on yourself when a specific play doesn’t go your way. Everybody knows the plays they have to make to help this team win.
“It’s all about you just doing your part.”
The third-ranked team in the latest Class 2A power rankings, Hannan (20-5) broke out on top with four runs in the first inning. Kennedy Martin drew a bases-loaded walk, Caitlin Collins had a two-run single and Lauren Wegener had an RBI single. The Hawks pushed across two more runs in the fourth with back-to-back RBI doubles by Martin and Sydney Williams.
Pounding out 10 hits and with every batter reaching base at least once, Collins said she and her teammates are all seeing the ball well at the plate.
“It’s contagious at times,” Collins said. “When one person gets a hit, it get the next batter going in the order and before you know it everybody is hitting and we are putting runs on the scoreboard. Everybody is feeding off of everybody else in the lineup. It is a tremendous amount of fun when everybody is hitting in the lineup. It just makes the game fun.”
Hutton (13-4) picked up the win in the circle for Hannan, allowing seven runs (four earned) on six hits, while striking out one and not walking a batter.
Doiron (15-9) was the losing pitcher for Zachary (15-9). She allowed eight runs (three earned) on 10 hits, while striking out seven and walking four.
“We just didn’t play well at all today,” Broncos coach Leslie Efferson-Yellot said. “We ran ourselves out of some innings. It was a poorly executed game on our part. You are not going to win games like that against a quality team like Hannan.”