Dust Devils turn tables on Warriors

GARDNERVILLE -- The Dayton High School softball team remembers its April Fool's Day wakeup call all too well. The Dust Devils were blasted on a windy day at home by Whittell, 17-6.

The Dust Devils returned the favor on Tuesday when it banged out 14 hits in a 13-3 non-league victory on Whittell's home field at Lampe Park in Gardnerville.

Dayton improved its season record to 24-4-1 (12-2 Northern 3A) and has now won 12 of 13 games since losing to Whittell (14-7, 9-1 Northern 2A) on April 1.

"That was an overall poor game, but I think it helped us refocus," Dayton coach Dusti Houk said. "You need to take the field each time knowing you need to work hard to beat a team, and this time we were focused."

Dayton scored five runs in the fourth inning to take an 8-0 lead and then put the game away with five more runs in the sixth. Play was called after six innings due to the 10-run rule.

Jessie Ayers hit 3-for-3 with two RBIs and put an exclamation point on the victory when she threw out a runner at home to end the game in the bottom of the sixth inning. Kaitlen McKinnon, Keeli Garcia, Rachel Hurt and Natalie Malekos contributed two hits each for the Dust Devils.

McKinnon's two-run single in the second inning gave Dayton a 2-0 lead. Lacy Taylor delivered a two-run single in the fourth. Ayres, Lauren Brown and Melanie Cox also had RBI singles in the sixth.

Nicole Greer pitched three shutout innings to earn credit for the win. The sophomore right-hander allowed one hit and one walk to go with seven strikeouts. Greer struck out six of the first eight batters she faced.

Garcia came on to pitch in the fourth, then after she walked three straight batters to load the bases in the fifth, Brown came on to pitch. Brown started out with a strikeout, allowed one run on Anna Kingman ground ball fielder's choice and then Garcia made a running catch in left field of a line drive that appeared destined for extra bases.

Whittell scored twice in the sixth and Whitney Gielow's single to center would have scored another except Ayres charged the ball and threw a strike to Taylor at the plate for the final out.

Dayton hosts Yerington in an important league doubleheader that starts on noon Saturday. Whittell, bidding for a shot at the Northern 2A title, hosts Incline Thursday at 3 p.m. at Lampe Park.


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