Carson softball locks up second place

The Carson High softball team made sure it wasn't going to have to play Spanish Springs in the first round of the Northern 4A playoffs.

Now the Senators are looking at a possible showdown with Northern Nevada's top team in the second round. Carson locked up second in the Sierra League by sweeping a doubleheader at Damonte Ranch on Saturday, finishing off a three-game sweep against the Mustangs.

Behind Nikki Keller, Carson won the opener 4-2 and behind Cassie Vondrak, the Senators won the nightcap 7-1. Carson finished at 16-5 in league while Douglas finished third at 15-6 and Damonte finished fourth at 14-7.

Carson will open the playoffs at 2 p.m. Thursday against the High Desert League's No. 3 seed. With a victory, the Senators would advance to face the Spanish Springs-Damonte winner.

"Seeded second should help us a little bit," Carson coach Scott Vickrey said. "We're going to work hard Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and get after it on Thursday."

Keller pitched a complete game five-hitter in the opener, shutting down Damonte after allowing two runs in the first inning. She struck out six.

Carson took a 1-0 lead in the first when Candice Rutledge singled and eventually scored on Dacey Hassey's single. The Senators tied it 2-2 in the fifth when Christa Casci singled and eventually scored on an error.

In the sixth, Keller and Vondrak singled and moved to second and third on Daria Leid's sacrifice bunt. Sarah Evans hit a ball to the right side to score a run and Rutledge followed with an RBI single to make it 6-2. Rutledge, Hassey and Vondrak all had two hits and Kaitlin Burroughs added a hit for Carson.

In the nightcap, Vondrak pitched a complete-game five-hitter. Carson took a 2-0 lead in the first after Rutledge singled and Abby Rankl walked. Hassey hit a flyball that moved both runners up and Burroughs followed with a two-run double.

Burroughs also had a two-run single during a four-run rally in the fourth that made it 6-0. Casci added an RBI single in the seventh. Burroughs ended up with two hits and four RBI and Hassey added a hit.


Sierra Barnwell struck out 22 batters in winning both games of a doubleheader as Dayton finished the regular season on a high note, beating Yerington 11-2 and 10-0 in six innings. Breann DeHaven also went 7-for-7 and Sara Simmons went 6-for-8 on the day.

Dayton (16-10, 11-5) will play either at Fernley or Lowry in a best two-of-three series beginning on Friday with the winner advancing to the NIAA 3A State Championship.

In the opener, Barnwell struck out 13 with no walks while allowing two unearned runs on four hits. Simmons was 3-for-4 with a run, Brittany Hill was 2-for-3 with three runs, a double and two RBI, DeHaven went 3-for-3 with two runs, a double and an RBI, Melissa Goetz was 2-for-3 with two runs, Barnwell had a hit and two RBI and Amanda Beard was 1-for-2 with an RBI and a run.

In the nightcap, Barnwell pitched a one-hit shutout, striking out nine and walking one. DeHaven was 4-for-4 with a double, two runs and an RBI, Hill was 2-for-4 with an RBI and three runs, Beard was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run, Simmons was 3-for-4 with two runs and an RBI, Barnwell had a hit and a run, Brittany Burrows was 1-for-2 with two RBI and Victoria Hynick was 1-for-2 with an RBI.


Carson finished second in league at 16-4-1 after splitting with Damonte. Carson lost the opener 11-10 but behind Jessie Sinclair won the nightcap 4-0.

Sinclair pitched a three-hit shutout, striking out three. In the nightcap in the third, Belen Munoz singled home Tiffany O'Day. In the fifth, Tami Conn hit the first of her two RBI doubles to score O'Day.

Conn scored O'Day again with another double in the sixth. In the seventh, Melissa Coyle executed a suicide squeeze bunt to score Brittany Duncan to make it 4-0.

O'Day made a spectacular defensive play in the sixth to help preserve shutout. She made a shoestring catch in center field and then threw home to complete a double play. Rebecca Gansberg also played well defensively at first.

In the opener, Marcella Watson had a double, two runs and two RBI, Munoz had two RBI and Coyle and Duncan each added an RBI. Watson also turned a double play when she caught a flyball in right field and doubled up the runner at first.


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