With the bases loaded and only one out in the final inning, the Bishop Lynch Lady Friars had a chance to write a storybook ending in Monday's TAPPS Division I Softball first-round playoff contest.
Unfortunately, two of the team's biggest hitters combined to see just four pitches before lining out and popping out, giving St. Pius X a 4-2 win over the higher-seeded Lady Friars (17-11) at Ferguson Park.
With just one hit in the previous six innings, the Lady Friars managed four singles and scored a pair of runs in the seventh, giving the team new life. Lillia Farlow was hit by a pitch to start the inning, followed by Gabi Quintanilla's single. With one out, Abby Thrash singled to load the bags. Kyleigh Freeman then singled to plate Libby Land – running in place of Farlow – and Reiley Smith drove in Quintanilla. But that's as close as the girls would get.
SPX held Lynch hitless through the first five innings while opening the game with a hot hand. The Panthers got the leadoff runner aboard with a walk, then brought the run in with a pair of singles. Fortunately, the Lady Friars ended the inning before additional damage was done as SPX left the bases loaded.
The turning point came in the top of the fifth, when the Panthers put three more runs on the board on the strength of two hits and three Bishop Lynch errors, giving SPX a 4-0 lead. The Lady Friars committed four errors in the contest.
Quintanilla broke up the no-hitter with a single in the fifth, but was left stranded at third to end the inning. The sophomore went 2-for-3 with a run scored. Thrash took the loss with a 113-pitch outing, allowing five hits, four runs (two earned), with four walks and eight strikeouts in seven innings.