BY DARRELL MOODY
Appeal Sports Writer
When the Fallon Elite scored five times in the top of the fifth inning to take a 5-2 lead, the Carson Valley Hot Shots weren't worried. After all, they play their best softball when they are tied or behind.
The Hot Shots followed that script again, scoring six times in the sixth inning en route to an 8-5 win in a 14B game at the National Softball Association Western World Series at Centennial Park on Thursday.
The Gardnerville-based team returns to action in the winner's bracket final today at 10 a.m. at Centennial Park. If the Hot Shots win, they will be in the 2 p.m. championship game.
"I wasn't worried at all," Carson Valley coach Tom Keck said after the win. "There's something about this team. They don't give up. I still believe we're the No. 1 team, and we are the team to beat. The team has been working so hard to get to this spot. Today they started to hit their peak."
The three-run deficit was the biggest the Hot Shots had faced in the tournament.
Jenna Geyer doubled, moved to third on an infield out and scored on Marlena Martin's single to right-center field. Chelsea Fent followed with a single and Kelly Sonnemann struck out. Illiana Brown followed with a roller between first and second, and the ensuing errant throw scored Martin and Fent, tying the game at 5. Two walks, another throwing error and a single by Geyer led to three more runs and an 8-5 lead.
Kalee Duryee, who suffered through one bad inning, easily retired Fallon in the seventh to end the game.
Duryee went 3-for-3 at the plate and Geyer added two hits. Amanda Caras, Fent, Martin and Aaliyah Paxson added a hit apiece
Sharks win by forfeit over Drop Zone
Sharks 4, Tracy Titans 3
After the Sharks behind 6-5 to the Drop Zone, it was discovered that the Yuba City team was using illegal players.
After a lengthy delay, the win was awarded to the Sharks. Sharks coach Joel Dunn said the Drop Zone had added three players that weren't on the roster.
The Sharks, thanks to a run-scoring single in the top of the seventh by K.C. Withrow, followed the victory over Drop Zone to edge the Titans.
Withrow's hit scored Emily Collins, snapping the 3-all tie. Collins, Morgan Kleine and Withrow all had RBI for the winners. All 10 starters had a hit for the Sharks.
Lindsey Ashbaugh allowed four hits and struck out 10 in the route-going performance.
The Sharks play today at 10 a.m. in Sparks against the Spokane Villains, who edged the Sharks 5-4 in pool play.
Santa Barbara Tide 3, N. Wildcats 1
N. Wildcats 6, Blaze 2
N. Wildcats 9, California Crushers 1
The Wildcats fought off elimination with impressive wins over the Blaze and Crushers. They will face the Rialto Rage today at 8 a.m. at Edmonds Sports Complex.
"We haven't played more than a typical weekend (yet)," Wildcats coach Troy Batastini said. "I was a little leery when we hit so poorly against the Tide. We came back well the last two games (at the plate)."
In the win over the Blaze, the Wildcats scored all six of their runs in the first two innings and held off the Blaze behind the pitching of Ashley Reese.
Jen Purcell doubled home two runs and Kacy Fritsen hit two singles to lead the Wildcats' offense. Kelly Lujan, Kayla Batastini, Jahnel Smith and Danielle Steward all contributed a hit apiece.
In the morning game, the Wildcats took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third on a run-scoring single by Lujan, only to see the Tide take the lead for good in the bottom of the inning with two runs.
Fritsen led the Wildcats with two hits, while Lujan, Baily West and Purcell added one each.
The Wildcats scored six runs in the second inning against the Crushers as Kayla Batastini and Stephanie Angotti delivered run-scoring hits. An error on Fritsen's groundball also scored two runs.
The game was stopped in the fifth inning because of the eight-run rule.
Elko Inferno 7, Dayton Prowlers 6
The first-year Prowlers fought back from a 6-0 deficit to tie the game and send it to extra innings.
Jemma Ramirez, who played a solid defensive game behind the plate, drove in two runs in the fifth to tie the game.
Becca Breuer, Ashley Vickers and Isabelle Villafana all hit safely for Dayton.
Skylar Jones played well at second base for the Prowlers.
Carson Sharks 10, Gold Rush 6
Fierce 13, Carson Sharks 3
The Sharks ended the double-elimination tournament with a run-rule loss to the Yorba Linda Fierce. Both of the Sharks' losses were to the Fierce.
The Fierce scored four times in each of the first two innings to wipe out the Sharks' 1-0 lead which came courtesy of Ellise McGowan's double.
The Sharks scored twice in the fifth to trim the lead to 8-3 on a run-scoring single by McGowan and a bases-loaded walk.
The Fierce put the game out of reach with five runs in the sixth thanks to a two-run double by Haleigh John.
McGowan had two of the three Sharks hits off winning pitcher Sam Richards.
Earlier, the Sharks stayed alive in the tournament with a four-inning win over the Winnemucca Gold Rush.
Lacie Gunzburg was the hitting star with a three-run homer and three-run double. She drove in six of the Sharks' final seven runs.
McGowan, Malia Tiffer and Megan Goodale collected two hits apiece, and Makayla Jackson, Emily Sandoval, Erika Watson and Sarah Brewer.
Watson and Jackson shared time on the mound with Watson earning the win.
Carson Sharks 7, Central Coast Express 0
CV Hot Shots 9, Carson Sharks 4
The Sharks were eliminated in their second game of the day by neighboring Carson Valley.
Erica Gallegos and Michelle Perry hit safely for the Sharks. Perry took the loss on the mound, striking out two and yielding four hits.
In the win over Central Coast, Gallegos fanned 10 and allowed just one hit. Perry, Sara Runge and Ali Barrette all had one hit.
- Contact Darrell Moody at email@example.com or (775) 881-1281