The Philomath High School softball team’s season ended Friday night in a 14-13 loss at Baker in a roller coaster of a ride of a play-in game.
The Warriors scored runs in four of the first five innings to build an 8-3 lead but Baker erupted for 11 in the bottom of the fifth to take a six-run lead. Two innings later with its back to the wall, Philomath scored five runs with several clutch hits and had the tying run on base when the game’s final out was recorded.
Baker advances to the Class 4A state playoffs with a 9-13 record while Philomath ends the season at 10-14.
Playing in her final game in a PHS uniform, senior Ashlynn Barron had a big night at the plate by going 4 for 4 with six RBIs. Sophomore Kelsey Olsen, making her first plate appearances of the season, also went 4 for 4 with four runs and two RBIs.
The Warriors scored two in the top of the first on a one-run single by Barron and a one-run double by sophomore Ahnika Tryon. After falling behind 3-2, Philomath regained the lead in the second on a two-run single by Barron.
Philomath went up 5-3 in the fourth with Barron driving in another run on a single and then 8-3 in the fifth with three more. In that frame, Olsen had a one-run single, freshman Kaylie Kohler followed with a one-run double and Olsen scored when junior McKenzie Hauck reached on an error.
But Baker responded with those 11 runs in the bottom of the fifth to seemingly take control on its home field. The Warriors couldn’t produce anything in the sixth before its dramatic comeback attempt in the seventh.
Junior Kori Galvan got the offense started with a single and Olsen followed with a single to get her home. Junior Emma Hood and Hauck then both reached on errors to load the bases. That brought up Barron, who delivered with a two-run single to center to cut Baker’s lead to 14-11.
Two batters later with two outs, Tryon hit a clutch single on a line drive to left to bring in two more runs and cut the lead down to one. But Baker escaped the threat with pitcher Kaycee Cuzick getting her 12th strikeout of the evening in a complete-game performance.
Along with those 4-for-4 performances from Barron and Olsen, Galvan finished 2 for 3 with three runs, Tryon went 2 for 4 with a double and three RBIs and Kohler went 2 for 4 with a double.
Senior Mackenzie Hiner, junior Elizabeth Morales-Marquez and junior Adrianna Hunter all spent time in the circle for the Warriors.