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Lady Hornets remain unbeaten heading into semi’s

It’s on to the championship round for the Frazee softball team after going 3-0 in the opening of the Section 6-1A playoffs.

The Lady Hornets took an 11-0 win Tuesday versus Walker-Hackensack-Akeley and defeated No. 3 seed Pine River-Backus 5-2, then defeated the top-seeded New York Mills team by the score of 8-6 Thursday in Menahga.

The Lady Hornets will play Parkers Prairie, which won the South half of the Section, this Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. in Pelican Rapids. 

The winner will advance as the undefeated team to the Section final Thursday. 

The loser will also advance, but will have to play one more game on Thursday and defeat the undefeated team twice to win the Section 6-1A title.

The Lady Hornets took advantage of some early game wildness by the W/H-A pitcher and scored six runs in the second inning. 

Frazee added one more in the third and four in the fourth to win via the 10-run rule at the end of five innings.

Jo Shipman handled the pitching chores for the Lady Hornets and she was dominating, striking out 12 batters of the 15 outs and having two other outs recorded, as she fielded two balls hit back to her and threw their batter out. 

The other out was at the end of a double play, which was a strikeout and throw down to second.

Josi Tappe had three hits for the Hornets, while Jaden Ketter, Autumn Mahoney, Kaysee Gerving and Katie Smith had one hit a piece.

Frazee had to fight their way through a close game against Pine River-Backus, as they came from behind and had to work out of several defensive jams, and also had to work through some unproductive hitting. 

Kennady Barlund started the rally after she gained a walk in the second inning, stole second and eventually scored on a Josi Tappe base hit.  

PR-B then took the lead as they scored twice in the top of the third to go ahead by the score of 2-1.

In the bottom of the fourth, Frazee scored three times to take a lead of 4-2. 

Shipman started things off with a base hit, which was followed by hits from Josi Tappe and Katie Smith. 

Ketter was hit by a pitch and Taylor Tappe and Autumn Mahoney were also walked in this inning. 

Frazee added one more insurance run in the bottom of the sixth, as Autumn Mahoney walked and then scored after hits by Kennady Barlund and Shipman.

Shipman started on the mound for the Lady Hornets, and she had some tough going as she walked seven batters and struck out seven batters in her 3.2 innings of pitching. 

Desiree Bauer came in and finished the game for the Lady Hornets, and she did a nice job of shutting the door as she didn’t allow a run or a hit while walking only one.

Josi Tappe led in hits, as she had three and Shipman had two, while Barlund and Katie Smith had one hit a piece.

The showdown with New York Mills turned into an intense game, which had much drama, as the Lady Hornets pulled off the upset.

“This game was as exciting a game as you would want to see, as two good teams battled,” said Frazee head coach Dave Trautman. “Both teams had good defensive plays, both teams got themselves out of some tough pitching situations and both teams came from behind to regain leads.”

In the end it was the Lady Hornets’ ability to run the bases and advance base runners via the sacrifice bunt that proved to be the difference.

The Hornets touched NYM’s ace pitcher for two runs in the first inning, as Ketter reached on an error and then that was followed by three hits from Mahoney, Kennady Barlund and Shipman. 

NYM picked up a run of their own in their half of the first, to leave the score at 2-1 after one inning. 

In the third inning, Mahoney reached on a base hit and eventually scored on an error by the Eagles that put the score to 3-1. 

In the bottom of the third, NYM scored twice to tie the game at 3-3.  The fourth inning saw the Eagles score one more time as their second baseman hit a long solo homerun to take a 4-3 lead.

In the sixth, the Lady Hornets took a lead of their own as they scored twice.

This time it started when Kaysee Gerving reached on an error and then this was followed by a Josi Tappe sacrifice, a base hit by Smith, a Courtney Gildersleeve sacrifice and a Ketter base hit. 

This put the score at 5-4 in favor of the Hornets. 

The Eagles weren’t to be outdone though, as they scored twice in their half of the inning as a walk and two hits netted them two runs and a 6-5 lead.

This set the stage for the top of the seventh, where Mahoney led off the inning for the Hornets and she scored on a Barlund hit and an Eagle error to knot the score at 6-6. 

This was all the scoring until the top of the ninth, when Mahoney got her fourth hit of the game and then stole second. 

Barlund reached on a walk and Shipman put down a sacrifice bunt that moved the runners up to second and third with one out. 

Gerving forced a throw to first, as she swung at a low third strike and on the play, Mahoney scored. 

Josi proceeded with a slap hit which scored Barlund, and the Lady Hornets held an 8-6 lead. 

The Eagles then went down in order in the bottom of the ninth and the Hornets had a very exciting extra inning win to advance them to the championship round. 

For the game, the Eagles scored their six runs on five hits, five walks and no Frazee errors.  

The Lady Hornets scored their eight runs on 11 hits, three walks and four Eagle errors. 

Mahoney had four hits, while Smith had three, Barlund had two and Ketter, Shipman and Josi Tappe had one hit apiece.

Bauer pitched the first two innings of the game for the Lady Hornets and Shipman pitched the last seven.