For the second time this season, the North Sanpete Lady Hawks defeated the Emery Spartans in a region 12 softball game by scoring the winning run in their last at bat. For the third time this region season, Emery lost a game that they could have won and probably should have won. The final score was 4-3.
Emery pitcher Whitney Roper did exactly what she was supposed to do for her team, she kept them in the game. Roper struck out nine batters, she gave up only five base hits, she only walked three batters and she allowed no earned runs. The Emery defense had three errors behind her with the runs coming for the Hawks because of those errors.
Emery, on the other hand, hit the ball well throughout the game as the Lady Spartans had 13 base hits in the game, 11 singles and two doubles. Markette Tanner and Whitney Roper hit the doubles. Unfortunately, the one thing Emery did not do well was score. In four different innings, Emery had two runners on base with less than two outs and did not score.
In the top of the second inning, Bryton Hess singled to start the inning with Roper doubling behind her. Jaiden Huntington and Shelby Mason followed with singles scoring Hess and Roper. With Huntington and Mason at third and second, the next three batters got out and Emery missed a golden opportunity to break open the game early on. In the third inning, Makiah Sherman singled to lead of the inning and Tanner doubled to put runners at second and third with no outs and Emery came away empty handed this time as the next three batters got out.
In the fifth inning, Jo Jennings singled to lead off the inning, Sherman grounded out, Tanner flew out to center and then Hess and Roper singled to score Jennings. Emery left two on base as the next batter grounded out.
In the sixth inning, Mason singled, Jeridi Price got out and then Auminee Bennett singled but Emery came away empty handed again as the next two batters popped up.
Then came the final inning, Markette Tanner led off the inning with a hard hit to centerfield. With a solid fence like Emery has at home, the hit is a homerun but because North Sanpete has a mesh fence, the centerfielder ran through the fence as she caught the ball and she held on for the out. Tough break for Emery. Hess and Roper then singled to once again put the Spartans in scoring position. Huntington then hit a hard shot towards the third baseman that somehow she caught six inches off the ground and the Hawks threw to first to get Roper off base on the hard hit that looked like a hit and the inning and the game was over. Another tough break for Emery.
That really was the story of the game, one tough break after another.
With that being said and done, Emery now has one last region game. The game is this Tuesday against Delta at home. Win or lose the game, it appears that Emery will finish third in region action this season.
Manti will win the region followed by North Sanpete, Emery and then Juab or Richfield. Delta will finish last and be the only team to miss the playoffs this season. Emery will travel to Cedar City and will face Wasatch in the first round of state on Saturday. Cedar will play probably Morgan in the other game at that site.
Emery is capable of beating anybody on a given day but as we saw last week, Emery is also capable of having tough breaks reach out and bite them. The state tournament will follow next week in St. George.