Fallon Green Wave quashes seventh-inning rally to win Nevada 3A State Softball Championship | NevadaAppeal.com

Fallon Green Wave quashes seventh-inning rally to win Nevada 3A State Softball Championship

Steve Ranson
LVN Editor Emeritus

RENO — Softball, like many sports, is a game of inches, which Lowry discovered in a 3-2 loss in the 2018 NIAA Class 3A Softball Championship game at Reno High School.

Down 3-1 going into the seventh inning, Lowry loaded the bases and scored a run against Fallon's Faith Cornmesser, but a pickoff on a Lowry runner who turned around to return to third base quickly ended the game with the Lady Wave winning its first state championship since 2015.

Cornmesser, pitched her third consecutive game at state, walked leadoff hitter Kelcy Cooper. The Wave had a break, though, when Cooper attempted to steal second base but was tagged out by shortstop Stacy Kalt.

One out, two to go for the Wave to cap a Cinderella season, but Cornmesser surrendered singles to Kylie Sappington and Sydney Conners. Madi McClellan, though, made the second out for Lowry, hitting a fly ball on the first pitch to second base.

Cornmesser worked a 2-2 count on Bailey Sapien, but a softly infield hit resulted in loading the bases. Lowry's Sierra Mastrejuan singled on a 1-2 count, driving in a run, but a perfectly thrown relay from left-fielder Shelbi Schultz to Rylee Buckmaster caught Conners, who had overrun third base, trying to return to the bag. Buckmaster laid down the tag on a stunned Conners for the game's final out.

Fallon's rivalry goes back to basketball when the Wave dominated the Lady Bucks and eventually toppled Lowry, 60-45, for the state basketball crown. Lowry's sweep of Fallon in an April 28 doubleheader, though, ignited the Wave into a 13-game winning streak, which included the Northern 3A Regional Softball Championship and a flawless run at state.

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Both Cornmesser and Lowry's top pitcher, Sylvie Prokasky, engaged in a classic pitching battle. Cornmesser, the workhorse of the Greenwave staff, wiggled out of a bases-loaded jam in the first by fanning Sapien.

In the top of the fifth inning, Cornmesser gave up two consecutive infield hits with one out, and Conners' bloop single loaded the bases. Alexis Jarret's diving catch of McClellan's fly ballot right field resulted in the inning's second out. With the bases loaded, though, Cornmesser walked Sapien on a 3-1 count to give Lowry a 1-0 lead.

Fallon responded three runs in the bottom of the sixth. With two outs, Kalt doubled on Prokasky's first pitch between center and right field. Cornmesser followed with a sharply hit ball the rolled under the third baseman's, scoring Kalt to tie the game. First baseman Macie Anderson's bloop single drove in the go-ahead run for a 2-1 lead.

After a meeting on the mound for Lowry, Fallon centerfielder Jordan Beyers reached first base on a throwing error to place runners on the corners. Aspen Mori's double that tailed quickly to the ground in left field drove in a pair of runs for a 3-2 Fallon lead.

This story will be updated with quotes and official statistics from the game.