RENO — Shadow Ridge hit five homers in two games going into Friday’s elimination game. The fences at Bishop Manogue High School were short and close, a recipe for a home run derby.
But Shadow Ridge was not the team that took advantage.
The Mustangs allowed three home runs and dropped a 5-1 decision to Douglas in the losers bracket final of the Class 4A state softball tournament. Douglas will meet Spanish Springs at 10 a.m. Saturday for the championship, with a second game, if necessary, at 12:30 p.m.
“I feel like we battled all the way until the very end,” Shadow Ridge senior Alisha Schultz said. “We were not giving up, that’s for sure.”
The Nos. 4, 5 and 6 hitters did all the damage for Douglas (24-12-1), starting with five-hole hitter Casey Peck’s three-run homer in the first. Cleanup hitter Chloie Pratt and No. 6 hitter Alyssa Smokey hit solo homers in the fourth.
“We underrated that part of the lineup,” Shadow Ridge coach Julia Meyn said. “We knew we needed to be off the plate, we didn’t know how far off the plate. Apparently we needed to be way off the plate.”
Shadow Ridge (28-12) couldn’t get timely hitting. The Mustangs scored in the fifth when Shea Clements came home from first on Caitlyn Covington’s double, but they left nine on base and were 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position.
“Of course we wish we could have won it all, but our team stayed positive and happy the whole time. This is fun,” Schultz said. “It’s cool we were the last Las Vegas team remaining.”
Shadow Ridge 12, Basic 10 — The Mustangs used a five-run sixth inning to grab the lead and eliminate the Wolves (26-13).
Shadow Ridge led 7-2 entering the bottom of the third after Covington’s homer and three RBI singles. Mikayla Berg’s two-run homer gave the Wolves their first two runs, and Shelby Basso had a two-run single for Basic in the third.
The Wolves’ Alyssa Ferguson homered in the fourth, and Hannah Barr singled home the tying run in the fifth. Basic took a 10-7 lead on Sanoe Helenihi’s three-run homer in the fifth, but the Mustangs rallied.
Merisa Osborn tied the score with a three-run homer for the Mustangs, and Schultz’s two-out, two-RBI single made it 12-10.
“They came to play, they earned their spot here,” Basic coach Lauren Taylor said of her team. “I hope they feel like it wasn’t a fluke. They came back to win five games to win (the Sunrise) Region. They deserved to be here.”