Prep Softball: Dubuque Senior Survives Extra-Inning Thriller With Linn-Mar
By K.J. Pilcher, Reporter
MARION - The Linn-Mar Lions roared and then they scratched and clawed.
But, it wasn't enough to overcome Mississippi Valey Conference foe Dubuque Senior.
The Rams scored three runs in the top of the 10th to claim a 9-6 Class 5A Region 4 softball semifinal victory over Linn-Mar Saturday night at Linn-Mar.
Dubuque Senior (34-6) took advantage of two Lions errors and received a two-run by Kristie Sommer to spoil Linn-Mar's last game at this diamond. The school is building a new complex, and the players paid homage by leaving their shoes at home plate and even gathering some dirt as a keepsake.
The Rams fell into a big hole early but steadily battled back in the game. Senior answered a big first inning with three in the second, powered by Liz Reuter's two-run single. Reuter later scored on Katie Sommer's single, pulling the Rams within two.
Sydney Tigges and Reuter tied the game 5-5 in the fifth. Tigges nailed a solo home run to center, while Reuter added an RBI single.
The Lions threatened in the bottom of the seventh, placing the go-ahead run at second. Maggie Rizor hit a base hit to right but Haley Zenner threw out Kelsey Duggan at the plate to force extra innings.
Linn-Mar stayed alive in the ninth, when they fell behind 6-5 on Zenner’s solo home run over the left center field fence. Down to their final out, they rallied. Kortlan Ollinger and Kelsey Duggan had consecutive singles and Alexis Kelsey loaded the bases with a walk, bringing up cleanup hitter Maggie Rizor, who hit a single to right field, sending the game to the 10th.
The Lions exploded for their first five runs in the opening inning. The big blow came from Rizor, who blasted a 2-2 pitch over the right field fence, scoring Kortlan Ollinger and Alexis Kelsey for a 3-0 lead.
Linn-Mar kept the offense rolling when Lauren Swanson hit a two-run single just out of reach of Zenner’s glove, chasing Maddy Ryan and Georgia Kolf home to end their scoring until the ninth.
Linn-Mar finished the season 22-18.
Senior will face fifth-ranked Pleasant Valley in the regional championship game Tuesday at Pleasant Valley, starting at 5:30 p.m. Pleasant Valley beat Bettendorf, 11-1, in six innings Saturday.
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