Girls softball gains split at invitational tourney

01_sb-6669IN THERE  — Kasey Brownell slides into third base with a triple in play against Colstrip on Friday morning at the Conrad Invitational tournament.  I-O Photo by Buck Traxler




The Cowgirl nine went 2-2 at their own invitational tournament over the weekend.

Team from Colstrip, Cut Bank, Shepherd, Shelby, Poplar, Sunburst, Simms, Glasgow, Columbus and Huntley Project filled the dugouts with players.

Conrad and Colstrip opened the tourney Friday morning and home girls were gracious and spotted the visitors an early 5-1 lead.

However the hits began to fall in for the Cowgirls and they chipped away at the lead and eventually came out a 9-5 winner.

Kasey Brownell picked up the win, her first of the season, and helped her own cause going 4-4 at the plate. She belted out a triple and a double and two singles in going 4-4 with two RBIs. Her battery mate Kelli Fagan was 2-4 with a double. Olivia Campbell matched those numbers as well. Kara Bandow went 1-4.

The big blow came off the bat of Taylor Johnson late in the contest. Conrad was nursing a slim 6-5 with Jonson stationed in the batters box. She got a pitch in her wheel house and slammed it over the left field fence scoring two runners ahead of her for a 9-5 lead. That was how the contest ended.

In the afternoon game the Cowgirls exploded for eight runs in the bottom of the first inning, doing all the damage they would need in posting a 9-2 win over Poplar.

Bandow and battery mate K. Fagan got the win with relief help from Rachelle Johns.  Conrad got their nine runs on 11 hits and they committed two errors. Poplar managed just four hits off of Bandow and committed four errors.

In the first inning Sami Fagan, Taylor and Campbell each slapped solid singles, each plating two runs.

In other first-day games, Shelby was a winner over Poplar 6-5 and Colstrip 5-4 and lost to Columbus 10-1. Cut Bank dropped two games, losing to Shepherd 9-7 and Huntley Project 9-6. Colstrip came back to rip Sunburst 31-6. Columbus then bombed the Refiners 19-0 and Simms suffered big losses, 32-1 to Shepherd and 17-1 to Glasgow.

Saturday morning the Glasgow Scotties jumped out to a 5-0 lead over Conrad in the first inning and went on to win 8-3.

Brownell suffered the loss.  Johns came on in the first inning in relief to stop the Glasgow rally, fanning two batters and getting another to pop out. Johns would go on to strike out nine batters in the game.

The highlights for Conrad were in the top of the third when Johns struck out the side and in the fourth when Devon Rauscher belted a two run single to right field. Johnson had the only other safety for the team.

The afternoon game saw the state defending champions Columbus rollover Conrad 18-2. They collected 16 hits while holding the home girls to three singles by K. Fagan, Brittany Greyn and Shenae Newmiller.

Bandow suffered the loss and is 2-3 for the seson

In other games, Shelby got by Shepherd 12-1 and Huntley Project 9-4. Simms won over Poplar 8-7 and then lost to Colstrip 16-2.

Columbus defeated Cut Bank 16-2, Glasgow stopped the Lady Wolves as well, 10-2 and Shepherd stopped Sunburst 14-1.

The Cowgirls will play in Havre on May Day, weather permitting, and have their final home game on May 4 when Shelby comes to town.