PHOENIX - Looks like the washing machines will finally get some work.
For nearly two weeks the 12th-seeded Salpointe Catholic softball team has not washed its uniforms - after an April 23 loss to Canyon del Oro - and has made a surprising run in the Division II state tournament.
"I think we are going to wash the uniforms," Salpointe pitcher Emily Griffin said. "I think it's time."
The Lancers ran into a hot pitcher on Monday and lost 1-0 to No. 1 Peoria Sunrise Mountain at the Rose Mofford sports complex. Salpointe falls into the loser's bracket and must face CDO at 6:30 tonight at Cherry Field with the loser going home and the winner returning to Phoenix on Wednesday for another elimination game.
"We're not done yet," Salpointe coach Stacy Schulte said. "We just told the girls our Cinderella season is not over. No one expected us to be here and we like that feeling."
Sunrise Mountain lefthander Taylor Nowlin, who gave up four hits, had a rise ball working much of the night, forcing the Salpointe hitters to pop up or fly out. But in the seventh, Hannah DeLuna singled down the left-field line and one out later, freshman second baseman Megan Flores placed a perfect bunt in front of the plate. Mustang third baseman Danae King fielded it but threw wide of first, allowing DeLuna to reach third.
Catcher Brianna Aguilar-Beaucage popped up to short and Ashley Broder popped up to second to end the threat.
"It's just missed opportunities, taking a long time to make adjustments at the plate," Schulte said. "Because we did have runners in scoring position several times, so it's having the girls learn that lesson that you can't wait too long to make that adjustment."
On the opposite side, Lancer starter Griffin stayed around the plate but didn't allow much outside of the fateful fourth. Pitcher Nowlin singled to center - the first hit given up by Griffin up to that point - and Kirsten Hostetler doubled her home for the only run of the game.
Griffin allowed just three hits and walked two, both in the first. She got Nowlin to ground to Flores to get out of that early jam.
"You can't strike everyone out; they are going to get timely hits," Griffin said. "That's what makes a good team good. You have to make adjustments faster, that's the only thing we need to do."
After giving up the run in the fourth, Griffin retired eight of the last nine batters she faced - allowing just a bloop single in the fifth.
"Emily has been a horse this postseason," Schulte said. "She wants it. It's in her. She's a senior, she wants to go out with a bang. Her movement has been great, her speed has been great, and she's been painting the corners."
Phoenix Greenway beat Glendale Cactus 2-0 in the other winner's bracket game on Monday. Cactus will face Ironwood Ridge at 6:30 tonight in an elimination game.
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