For most of the season, the Rogers City softball team has taken care of its opponents with relative ease.
It was a different story on Monday however and the Hurons found themselves having to rally back and then hang on in a Division 4 district semifinal game against Harbor Light.
The Hurons turned a 5-3-2 double play in the seventh inning and came through with clutch hits at the right times to beat the Swordsmen 3-2 at Gilpin Field.
News Photo by James Andersen
Rogers City’s Logan Fleming (10) throws a ball to first base to get an out during a Division 4 district semifinal game in Rogers City on Monday.
"It was a good comeback by our girls and I'm really proud of them," Rogers City coach Karl Grambau said. "They really really played well."
Rogers City (33-5) will face Onaway today for the district title at 4 p.m. at Gilpin Field.
From the beginning of the game, Harbor Light showed that it wasn't going to be pushed around and took a 2-0 lead after three innings. Both Harbor Light runs came on sacrifices.
Biding its time, Rogers City rallied to tie the game in the bottom of the fourth inning. With one out Morgan Hall tripled. Melissa Pomranke followed Hall with a walk and both of them came around to score after a wild pitch and an error.
After Harbor Light stranded a runner in the top of the fifth inning, Logan Fleming singled to lead things off for Rogers City in the bottom of the inning. Two batters later, Nikki LaLonde ripped an RBI single to right field to score Fleming and put Rogers City ahead for good.
"They (Harbor Light) played very tough all day and we had the rally when we needed it," Grambau said. "Nikki LaLonde had a big big hit to knock in that go-ahead run."
Harbor Light went quietly in the sixth inning, but put up a fight in the seventh. A leadoff single and an error gave the Swordsmen runners on the corners with one out.
A bunt attempt by the Swordsmen quickly turned into a game-ending double-play after Fleming held the runner at third and threw to first base for the first out. The runner at third tagged and attempted to score but was called out on a throw from Linnea Brege to Cassie Brege at home.
"It's what we do in practice. We try to practice it at game speed, but I don't think you ever can," Grambau said.
Melissa Pomranke earned the win, allowing two runs on two hits with five strikeouts in seven innings. Offensively, Rogers City had just three hits, but made them all count.
Rogers City will attempt to end Onaway's five-year district title run when the two teams play this afternoon.
"We knew that this was going to be a tough game for us tonight, we really did, Grambau said. " (Now) it's us and Onaway. One team's going on, so why not us?"