A Sweet Springs-Malta Bend freshman stalled La Monte’s typically high-powered offensive machine Class 1 sectional state tournament Tuesday in Sweet Springs.
Kylee Winfrey stymied Lady Vikings softball for six innings, allowing eight hits and no runs in a 3-0 victory over La Monte.
The District 14 champions were not without chances, but often were looking changeup when they got a curveball.
“We were prepared for her to throw a change up,” La Monte head coach Dabecka Kirk said. “I was told that she throws a really good change up and she likes to throw it a lot… and she never once threw it.”
Winfrey, who struck out four, represents a crop of Lady Greyhound underclassmen that stepped up with the teams’ two upperclassmen on a senior trip to Florida.
“We played for them,” Winfrey said of her far-flung teammates. “We pulled through and played our game. It was pretty exciting.”
Two La Monte base runners reached third in the second inning. One was picked off, and Emily Knoernschild, who doubled, was stranded after two groundouts.
Winfrey said she turned to her curveball when La Monte’s offense threatened.
“My team was there to back me up,” Winfrey said. “My curve was definitely my go-to pitch.”
After facing one over the minimum through the first three innings, Sweet Springs-Malta Bend plated two runs on La Monte starter Madison Harris. Anssly Parker’s one-out double scored Brooke Conner and Addy Eckhoff for the first runs of the game.
Harris allowed three runs on four hits and a walk.
Conner added an insurance run and punctuated the Lady ‘Hounds’ victory with a solo home run in the sixth.
The Lady Greyhounds advance to play Crest Ridge, the only team to have beaten either Sweet Springs-Malta Bend or La Monte before Tuesday.
Kirk, as with the rest of the team, was reflective after the season-ending loss.
“My seniors put in four quality, hard years,” Kirk said. “It’s sad to see it end like this, it’s sad to see them go.”
Alex Agueros can be reached at 660-826-1000, ext. 1483 or on Twitter @abagueros2