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Comets drop opener

Staff Reports

The Nevada Comets 14 and under softball team suffered a heartbreaking loss in its opening game of the ASA National Championships.

The Comets lost to the Orland Park Sparks of Illinois 2-1 in nine innings on Tuesday in Broken Arrow, Okla. The Comets outhit the Sparks 7-1, but committed five errors as Orland Park scored two unearned runs for the win.

Brittany Puzey didn’t allow a hit until the ninth inning. The only hit she allowed came on a bunt that stayed fair when the Comets’ defense tried to allow it to roll foul.

The bunt came with a runner at second under international rules and gave the Sparks runners at first and third. Orland Park then scored the winning run on a groundball when the throw that came home was errant.

The Comets took a 1-0 lead in the eighth when Stevie Smith, who went 3-for-4, brought home Andrea Lazzari with a single. The Comets could have extended their lead, but Kayla Dunn was left at third. In the bottom of the eight, the Sparks scored on a throwing error on a bunt.

Kaycee Wilcks had a hit and played the whole game despite needing 10 stitches after being hit by a pitch in the eye. Puzey, who had six strikeouts, had a hit, Dunn doubled and Katie Stevens added a hit.

The Comets play today against the Oklahoma City Jitterbugs. Seeding will then be determined for the double elimination, 88-team tournament.