Walk-off slam lifts Heavener over North Rock Creek

Keven Scrutchins
Shawnee News-Star, USA TODAY NETWORK
North Rock Creek shortstop Haley Hacker (left) fires the ball to first base for the out as teammate and second baseman Raynee Bass looks on.

The North Rock Creek Lady Cougars came up just short in the Class 5A State Slow Pitch Softball Tournament at the Ballfields at Firelake Wednesday afternoon to the Heavener Lady Wolves in an 18-14 slugfest.

The Lady Cougars looked like they would cruise in the quarterfinal matchup, taking a 3-1 lead after the first inning and stretching the advantage to 7-1 after two inning of play. North Rock Creek scored the three runs on a two-run homer to left-center field by Hannah Earlywine and an RBI single off of the bat of Lydia VanAntwerp.

The Lady Wolves responded with a lone run in the bottom half to cut the North Rock Creek lead to 3-1.

The Lady Cougars then scored four more in the top of the second. The first run came on an RBI single by Caty Baack. The big blow came on a three-run dinger by sophomore Katie Larson as North Rock Creek led 7-1.

Each team traded runs in the third and the Lady Cougars led 8-2 heading into the fourth. That’s when things began to slip away for the Lady Cougars.

North Rock Creek scored a lone run in the in the top of the fourth on an RBI single by Haley Hacker, but a Heavener four-run bottom half made things much tighter. The Lady Cougars led 9-6 after four.

North Rock Creek stalled in the fifth and the Lady Wolves kept on coming at the Lady Cougars, scoring five runs on six hits in the bottom of five to take their first lead of 12-9.

The Lady Cougars tied things up at 12-12 after their three-run at-bat in the top half of the sixth. Once again, Earlywine delivered a bomb to left for North Rock Creek. Back-to-back walks to Abbott and Haney set the table for the three-run blast.

But like they did all day, the Lady Wolves answered and took a 14-12 lead with one inning left to play. North Rock Creek tied the game at 14-14 on a two-run, bases loaded double to center by Baack.

Heavener then ended the Lady Cougars' run in dramatic fashion in the bottom of the seventh. Three singles and a foul out set up the final at-bat in the contest. With the bases loaded, freshman Cayleigh McGee belted a grand slam home run to deep left field to end the Lady Cougars' season with the 18-14 win.