Photo by Bre Rogers/HutchCC Sports Information: Ashley Wilson celebrates
By Bailey Pennycuff / Co-Sports Editor
For the first time in 14 years, the Hutchinson Community College softball team defeated Butler.
Both games of the doubleheader Saturday in El Dorado were exhilarating matchups, however, the Blue Dragons took another split.
In the first game, Hutch built up a three-run lead by the bottom of the third inning. They created this lead after getting down three runs in the first inning.
That comeback, unfortunately, was not enough to clinch the win as the Grizzlies scored five unanswered runs in the bottom of the sixth.
Freshman catcher Lexi Williams had a triple and freshman outfielder Bailey Pennycuff had a double and a single with two RBIs. Sophomores Alexis Way and Caitlin Schumacher both had doubles and one RBI each. Freshman infielder Natalie Bevan, sophomore infielder Ashley Wilson, and sophomore pitcher Maryssa Rollin each had singles.
As for the thrilling second game, the Blue Dragons got behind early in the game. Butler was leading by two after two innings – but in the third, Hutch managed to wake-up and score five runs.
Of course, the Grizzlies then went on to score five unanswered runs to lead 7-5 after four innings.
To lead off the fifth, Rollin decided it was time for yet another comeback as she homered for her sixth home run of the season. It was 9-7 Hutch at the end of that inning.
Sophomore Taylor Ullery whacked a homer beyond the parking lot at East Park to add two more to the lead. As it turns out, the two runs would be important due to Butler’s attempt of a comeback in the sixth with back-to-back homers.
Rollin started in the circle for the Blue Dragons and threw for four innings, allowing nine hits, seven runs, three strikeouts, and six walks. Freshman Jordan Galliher came in to pitch a flawless fifth inning. She was able to get one out in the sixth, but when the Grizzlies hit their late-game homers, freshman Sadie Loney came in to finish. Loney completed her save with only six pitches in the seventh.
Ullery went 4 for 4 in game two with two doubles, a home run, and four RBIs. Pennycuff, again, had two hits and two RBIs. Williams, Way, Rollin, and freshman Kylee Dunn each had a hit.
Hutchinson improves to 14-6 overall and 3-1 in the Jayhawk Conference.
Women’s Track and Field
The women’s track and field team earned points in two events at the NJCAA Indoor National Championships on Saturday in Lynchburg, Virginia.
Not only that, but sophomore Gabby Collins earned All-American honors in both the events.
First, Collins placed eighth in the 1,000 meters. She ran a time of 3 minutes, 16.26 seconds. However, she holds the Blue Dragon school record at 3:03.97. Collins ran the record time just the day before the national championship.
Then, running the second leg in the 4×800-meter relay, Collins earned All-American yet again. Sophomore first leg Christina Bruce, sophomore third leg Sheila Too and freshman fourth leg Megan Miller helped her and the rest of the team in earning another point by placing eighth.
The Blue Dragons will start their 2020 outdoor season March 21 at the Emporia State Spring Twilight.
The baseball team faced a tough Barton team Saturday in Great Bend.
In game one, freshman Jenner Steele batted in sophomore Jeremiah Ceasar in the first inning – this run would end up being Hutch’s only lead for the day.
After that half-inning, Barton began to pile on more and more runs each inning.
Freshman Luke Sartori, Steele, freshman Tyler Delong, freshman Drew Reetz, and Ceasar all had singles.
Sophomore Zach Firmature took the loss for the Blue Dragons. He pitched three innings, striking out five, but allowing ten hits and seven runs.
Game two started off with a burning Barton fire in the first inning. The Cougars led Hutch 10-0 before they could even scratch a run across the plate.
The Blue Dragons showed some life in the fourth inning as sophomore Will Reetz and Satori both hit home runs to cut the deficit to 10-4.
Ceasar went 3-4 with a triple and two RBIs.
Sophomore Ethan Peterson took the loss.
The Blue Dragons fall to 13-6 overall and start the Jayhawk West season at 0-4.