LEXINGTON — In a seesaw contest that included four lead changes, the Scottsbluff softball team dropped a season-opening 10-9 setback to Lexington in eight innings on Friday in Lexington.
After rallying from a three-run deficit in the top of the seventh inning to pull even, the Bearcats went in front 9-8 on Mariyah Avila’s run-scoring single in the eighth. However, Lexington answered with the tying and winning runs in the home half of the frame to escape with the victory.
Scottsbluff will be back in action at the Lexington Invitational on Saturday. The Bearcats will face Adams Central in the first round at 9:30 a.m. The other opening-round games feature Chadron taking on Lexington, Alliance facing Southern Valley/Alma, and Holdrege meeting Gothenburg.
Scottsbluff broke on top first in the opening inning of Friday’s game. After Brady Laucomer singled and Kymber Shallenberger was hit by a pitch, Maddie Johnston doubled in both to give the Bearcats a 2-0 lead.
After being held scoreless the first two innings, Lexington ignited for six runs in the bottom of the third to grab its first lead.
Scottsbluff managed to chip away at the lead with single runs in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings to pull within 6-5. Laucomer drove in Sasha Paez with a single in the fourth, Reagan Churchill singled home Johnston in the fifth, and Tierney Schleve scored in the sixth.
Lexington plated a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth to extend the lead to 8-5.
Down to their final at bat, the Bearcats managed to scratch out three runs to even things up. Talera Kinsey doubled and scored on an error to make it 8-6. Following a Paez single, Alex Jones drove in two runs to tie the game.
Scottsbluff finished the contest with 11 hits. Paez led the way by going 4-for-4. Laucomer and Ashley Grasmick scored two runs each. Jones, Laucomer and Johnston each finished with two runs batted in.
Shallenberger got the start in the circle for the Bearcats. She allowed three earned runs on five hits, walked four and struck out three in 5 1/3 innings of work. Keela Peters tossed the final 2 1/3 innings in relief. Peters allowed one earned run on three hits, walked none and fanned one.
Madison Sutton had a home run for Lexington. Klair Fagot led the Minutemaids offensively with three hits and three runs scored.
Scottsbluff (0-1) 200 111 31 — 9 11 3
Lexington (1-1) 006 002 02 — 10 8 3
WP — Austin Haussler. LP — Keela Peters.
HR — Lexington (Madison Sutton). 2B — Scottsbluff (Maddie Johnston). Lexington (Jordyn Jeffries).