By Travis Smola
The Schoolcraft Eagles varsity softball team had a season to remember, but came up just short in its bid for the school’s first state title in the sport.
Schoolcraft failed to score any runs in the state title game against Millington, losing 8-0. The Eagles got down early in the contest as the Eagles struck out their first five at-bats and Millington scored its first five runs in the bottom of the first.
Jordan Watts got on base with a single in the top of the second, but courtesy runner Paige Reid was left stranded. Sophie Ridge and Danielle Blyly both got on base in the top of the third, but they too were left stranded at first and second. The only other hit of the game came from Adrienne Rosey on a single in the sixth.
It was a bitter pill to swallow for the Eagles after several come-from-behind wins in the tournament to get to the final game of the season. In the semifinal the day before, the team played a thriller against Dundee.
In that game, the Vikings opened an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first. Dundee loaded the bases in the top of the second, but great home-plate throws by Makayla Meade and Ridge helped the Eagles out of the inning with no damage. Dundee made the score 3-0 in the top of the fifth. The Eagles finally got on the board after a bunt single by Ridge. She got to second on a fielding error and finally home on another.
In the top of the sixth, Kayla Onken walked to start things off. That is when Kelby Goldschmeding made the play of the game. She crushed a huge, two-run homer over the right field wall to tie the game. The Eagles didn’t get anymore runs from the inning, but it helped shift momentum to Schoolcraft’s side.
After the score stayed tied 3-3 in the seventh, the game went into extra innings. In the bottom of the eighth, Onken walked again and got to second on a pop out. After that Dundee intentionally walked Meade and Kelby’s twin sister, Allie Goldschmeding came to bat. Allie hit a short grounder into the infield which was turned to first and looked like an easy out for Dundee. But the base umpire ruled the throw was late; Goldschmeding’s foot hit the base first. Onken scored on the play 4-3 to win the game.
The young team will graduate only two seniors in Meade and Brenna Walther, meaning next season should be one to look forward to for fans.