Lady Bulldogs scorch Eureka for 29-run victory
EUREKA — The Lady Bulldogs couldn’t have started the season any hotter.
When the Lady Bulldogs made the 130-mile jaunt up north to Eureka Saturday, they made sure to bring their bats. The ping of the aluminum connected with the ball was a familiar sound in the top of the first as the Lady Bulldogs scored 14 runs en route to a 29-0 season-opening thrashing of the Lady Lions.
The Lady Bulldogs hammered the Lady Lion pitcher for 19 hits in only five innings of play in the 10-run rule shortened game.
“We started out strong and the girls just kept on hitting,” first-year Mission coach Susan Weaselhead said.
Seven of the nine Lady Bulldogs’ starters notched a hit in the game and the two that didn’t combined for five RBIs.
With four starters from last year’s 16-6 team, the Lady Bulldogs’ infield combined for 14 hits, 16 runs and 14 RBIs. Shortstop Kinley Pope, a Charlo sophomore, went 2-for-5, scored five runs and knocked in three. Returning third baseman Janeal McDonald went 2-for-3 and had four runs and four RBIs. Batting in the cleanup spot, Mission senior catcher Katie McDonald went 4-for-5, which included a triple. The Lady Bulldog crossed the plate four times and drove in four runs. Second baseman Dalena Weaselhead had three hits, four RBIs and scored two runs. Taking over for Kelci Apland at first base, Bryanna Steele was hitless in the game, but still managed to knock in three runs.
Lady Bulldog leadoff hitter, Bella Dally went 4-for-5, scored four runs and also drove in four runs. Dally, a Mission senior, leads an outfield where she is the only returning starter. Serena Long went 1-for-3, scored four runs and had a RBI. Jasmine Gilleard went hitless, but drove in two runs.
Taking over for Mattea Grant as Lady Bulldog ace, Kyla Olson was masterful in the season opener. The Mission junior showed great control, striking out nine, only issuing two walks and only allowing one hit.
“She (Olson) was throwing strikes. Every pitch she tried went over. She was just in control,” Weaselhead.
The Lady Bulldogs started where they left off last season. The Lady Bulldogs won 11 of their last 13 regular-season games to earn a berth in the state tournament, where they were only two outs away from advancing to the final day.
With most of their players returning from last year, Weaselhead, who’s taking over for the new Ronan coach Tom Peterson, believes she has a team that can make it to the final day of the season this year.
“We’d like to medal this year. We’d like to take home some hardware,” she said.
After playing the Trotters in Plains, Tuesday, March 31, the Lady Bulldogs will be off until April 6, when they travel to Thompson Falls.
Mission 28, Eureka
Mission (14 )26 52x–29 19 1
Eureka 000 000–0 1 6
Kyla Olson and Katie McDonald. Jacquelyn Lemer and Cassidy Morgan. W - Olson (1-0). L - Lerner (0-1).
MISSION - Bella Dally 4-5, Kinley Pope 2-5, Katie McDonald 4-5, Janeal McDonald 2-3, Dalena Weaselhead 3-5, Jasmine Gilleard 0-5, Olson 3-5, Serena Long 1-3, Bryanna Steele 0-5.
EUREKA - Lerner 0-0, Mikayla Newman 0-2, Heather Burke 0-2, Steph Vogelman 0-2, Morgan 0-2, Alaina Peacock 0-2, Brooke Williams 1-2, Jazzy Haidle 0-2, Jenna Peterson 0-1.