By RAFAEL MARQUEZ
In a tightly contested game, the Hays High Lady Rebels fell to Canyon High 6-7.
After a quick first inning that saw each of the teams’ three batters get put away, the Lady Cougars opened up scoring with a run by Krystina Holguin off of a double by Kaitlyn Hollingshead. During their next at bat, Lady Rebels left fielder Clarissa Gonzalez hit a single to get on base and ran home after center fielder Brayden Pinckard hit a double, bringing the second inning score to 1-1.
Hays pitcher Sarah Leal started the third inning by making quick work of the three Canyon batters she faced. With the Lady Rebels at bat, Ashley Manning scored a run impulsed off a base hit by Haleigh Madden, giving Hays a 2-1 lead.
The Lady Cougars answered with a run of their own at their next at bat. Krystina Holguin got on base and was later impulsed home by a Kelsea Hendrix double, tying the game 2-2.
To open the fifth inning, both Canyon left fielder Angie Villareal and Canyon shortstop Taylor Key hit singles. Bianca Prado hit a double that pushed in one run, and Merilee Burge hit a single that pushed in two more runs.
Hays answered with three runs of their own when they came up to bat, tying the game 5-5. Canyon walked Manning. Maddy Shannon, the next Hays batter, hit a single that benefitted from some apparent miscommunication by the Canyon defense. Hays’ second baseman Addie Vayas hit a triple that pushed in the two runners already on base. Vayas herself also scored, off a single by Madden.
Canyon scored two more runs during their next at bat, and Hays’ Brayden Pinckard answered Canyon with a solo home run. The score at the end of the sixth inning was Hays 6, Canyon 7.
The Lady Rebel’s defense did not let up. The Lady Cougars left one runner on base and had two runners taken out by a double play.
First at bat for the Lady Rebels in the seventh inning was Shannon, who hit a single. Vayas then attempted a bunt, but the play did not work out. Shannon was called out by the second base umpire in what was probably the most controversial call of the game.
Despite a great effort, the Lady Rebels couldn’t pull out a win. Lady Rebels head coach Aaron Fuller said, “I knew it was going to be a hard fought game.”
The Lady Rebels record now stands at 6-1-1 and the Lady Cougars record improves to 6-2.