Photo courtesy of Don Borin/Stop Action Photography Skyline Spartans shortstop Taylor Juenke, left, hustles to tag second base while Issaquah sophomore Kendal Gentzen slides into second base in a contest between KingCo 4A rivals on March 30 at Issaquah High School.
With the tying run at the plate, the Skyline Spartans girls softball team put the finishing touches on a victory against the Issaquah Eagles.
Skyline, which led Issaquah 7-2 through four innings of play, saw their lead slowly shrink in the latter portions of the game against their rival. Issaquah scored one run in the bottom of the fifth and tacked on one more in the bottom of the sixth, cutting Skyline’s lead to 7-4.
In the bottom of the seventh, Issaquah hitter Clara Wolff doubled and Emma Huryn followed with a clutch single, giving the Eagles’ two baserunners with no outs. Skyline pitcher Baillie Stewart, who pitched all seven innings for the Spartans, got Issaquah hitter Alaina Carman to line out for the first out of the inning. With the tying run at the plate for the second consecutive at bat, Stewart got Issaquah hitter Lauren Frueh to ground out into a game sealing double play, preserving Skyline’s 7-4 victory against Issaquah on March 30 at Issaquah High School.
The Spartans improved their overall record to 5-1 with the triumph while Issaquah dropped to 1-6 overall.
Spartans’ head coach Lindsay Sullivan raved about Stewart’s resolve following the game. Stewart surrendered seven hits in a complete game in the pitching circle.
“I think she pitched really hard. It took a lot of mental toughness especially when you are working through a little bit of adversity. She did a great job of working through it and making adjustments,” Sullivan said.
Issaquah head coach Ron Hatlen was proud of his team’s rally in the final three innings of the game.
“They never quit. The energy is there and we’re getting there. The intensity and the talent is there and I wish we had some more wins,” Hatlen said.
Hatlen said the Spartans scored five unearned runs due to errors in the field.
“We gave them five unearned runs and we lost 7-4. We’re just giving up an extra run here and an extra run there. KingCo (Conference) is tough. Everybody we play is really good. We are getting there. We are hitting the ball and we are hitting it hard. We just kept hitting it to Taylor Juenke (Skyline Spartans shortstop),” Hatlen said. “She is legit and she made every play.”
Juenke made several key plays in the infield in the contest against the Eagles. Juenke will continue her softball career at Division-1 Stony Brook University in New York.