Wild sixth dooms Grizz
Ashland’s Jennifer O’Connor smacked a three-run home run in the sixth inning but Illinois Valley took advantage of 10 Grizzly errors to leave North Mountain Park with a 24-15 nonleague win on Thursday.
The Class 3A Cougars (3-15) broke the game open by scoring 10 runs in a rain-drenched sixth. Mahkayla Sommers led the way, going 5-for-6 at the plate with a double.
The Grizzlies (2-15) got an emotional lift in the bottom of the sixth when O’Connor delivered the team’s first home run of the year, a line drive shot over the wall in center.
“They came out a little flat,” Ashland coach Nicole Lehman said, “but if it wasn’t for that sixth inning we would have pushed back and got ahead. But I’m really proud of the way they pushed back in the sixth and seventh innings.”
Lehman said O’Connor’s home run fired up the Grizzlies.
“They got really excited at that point,” she said.
Ashland is scheduled to play a doubleheader at North Eugene on Saturday but Lehman said the games will either be rescheduled or go down as Grizz forfeits because Ashland will not have enough players available.
Ashland’s next home game is Tuesday against Eagle Point.
Illinois Valley 241 40(10) 3 — 24 8 7
Ashland 103 405 2 — 15 3 10
Primeau and Sommers; Pippa-Baker, Philpott (3), Bohn (5) and Senestraro. W — Primeau. L — Pippa-Baker. 2B — IV: Sommers. HR — A: O’Connor (1).
At Grants Pass, Ashland pulled out two three-set barnburners but lost the team battle 5-3 to Grants Pass on Thursday.
Ashland No. 4 singles player Anmol Gagneja overcame a first-set loss to defeat Alyssa Jesse, 4-6, 6-0, 10-8.
In the No. 4 doubles match, Ashland’s Molly Bloom and JD Miller also earned a comeback victory, beating Berklee Bennett and Lyndsey Miner, 4-6, 7-5, 11-9.
SINGLES — Elizabeth Williams, GP, d. Lilli Patton, 6-1, 6-2; Shelbie LaPan, GP, d. Marina Tacconi, 1-6, 6-1, 10-8; Lauren Croyle, A, d. Shelby Bowen, 6-2, 6-2; Anmol Gagneja, A, d. Alyssa Jesse, 4-6, 6-0, 10-8.
DOUBLES — Abi Johnson-McKenna Stephenson, GP, d. Sarah Kaufman-Soleil Heller, 6-0, 6-0; Amanda Solar-Autumn Michels, GP, d. Stella Bungay-Sofia Baldridge, 6-4, 6-2; Grace Pitzik-Cheyenne New, GP, d. Tia Wilhelm-Gabriela Safay, 6-3, 7-6 (5); Molly Bloom-JD Miller, A, d. Berklee Bennett-Lyndsey Miner, 4-6, 7-5, 11-9.