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Pawhuska earns win No. 5; will be in Perkins for districts

Pawhuska outfielder Sarah Phillippi makes a sliding attempt at a fly ball Friday during one of the three games the Lady Huskies played at the Sperry Softball Tournament. PHS defeated Chelsea, 3-2, in tourney action on Saturday. Jack Buzbee/Journal-Capital
Pawhuska outfielder Sarah Phillippi makes a sliding attempt at a fly ball Friday during one of the three games the Lady Huskies played at the Sperry Softball Tournament. PHS defeated Chelsea, 3-2, in tourney action on Saturday. Jack Buzbee/Journal-Capital
Believe it or not, Lady Huskie baserunner Riley Sell (standing) was called out following this play at the plate Friday at the Sperry High School Softball Tournament. Pawhuska lost the game to Dewey by a score of 3-2. The catcher of the Lady Bulldoggers is Kaleigh Hinkle. Jack Buzbee/Journal-Capital
Believe it or not, Lady Huskie baserunner Riley Sell (standing) was called out following this play at the plate Friday at the Sperry High School Softball Tournament. Pawhuska lost the game to Dewey by a score of 3-2. The catcher of the Lady Bulldoggers is Kaleigh Hinkle. Jack Buzbee/Journal-Capital
Jordyn Wahpekeche of Pawhuska, sitting at right, is demonstrably declared safe by the home plate umpire Friday during one of the Lady Huskie games at the Sperry Softball Tournament. Jack Buzbee/Journal-Capital
Jordyn Wahpekeche of Pawhuska, sitting at right, is demonstrably declared safe by the home plate umpire Friday during one of the Lady Huskie games at the Sperry Softball Tournament. Jack Buzbee/Journal-Capital

Continuing to build toward the upcoming post season, the Pawhuska High School Lady Huskies capped a hard-luck run at the Sperry Softball Tournament on Saturday by wresting a one-run victory, 3-2, from the Chelsea Dragons.

Coach Olivia Chronister’s Lady Huskies found out Friday that they will go on the road to Perkins for their Class 3A District series. They will meet the Lady Demons for a best-of-three game matchup that is to be completed by Saturday, Sept. 28.

The Perkins-Tryon team currently has an 11-16 record for the year while PHS took a 5-20 mark into its scheduled Tuesday contest at Barnsdall. The Lady Huskies are to play a home double-header Thursday versus Newkirk (with a 4 p.m. start) . Perry visits Friday for a 5:30 p.m. game and the local squad heads to Tulsa for the Lincoln Christian Tournament on Saturday.

In last Saturday’s game at Sperry, a one-out double by Sarah Phillippi knocked in fellow PHS sophomore Breanna Redeagle to conclude the six-inning triumph over Chelsea. It marked Pawhuska’s second win against the Dragons in eight days.

Redeagle earned a complete-game pitching victory by scattering eight hits while striking out two, walking two and hitting two batters. The Lady Huskies battled back to tie the game, 2-2, after three innings after the Dragons scored both their runs in the top of the first.

Senior Haley Malaske was struck by a pitch as she led off for PHS. A sacrifice by Keylee Kirk advanced Malaske, who crossed the plate on a groundout by Sydney Sellers to cut Chelsea’s lead in half. Kirk drew a leadoff walk in the third and moved up on a single by Logan Ratzlaff. An RBI single by Sellers then tied the game at two runs apiece.

Chelsea loaded the bases with no outs in the fifth, but Redeagle escaped unscathed with the help of a pair of strikeouts. The Pawhuska righthander retired the Dragons in order in the sixth. Redeagle then walked to start the game-winning sequence for the Lady Huskies.

The victory snapped a four-loss streak that included three in the tournament on Friday.

Dewey 3, Pawhuska 2

The Lady Huskies nearly pulled off the comeback Friday in their third game of the tournament, which matched them against an old nemesis: the Dewey Bulldoggers.

Pawhuska came up one run short, however, as Dewey made an early lead hold up in a 3-2 decision that was even closer than the score makes it appear. In addition to pitching a four-hitter, senior Taylor Clark finished three-for-three batting for the Lady Doggers.

Redeagle locked up in a scoreless duel with the Dewey ace lefthander into the third inning before the Doggers pushed across lone tallies in the three consecutive frames. The first hit surrendered by Clark came in the fourth inning via a leadoff double by Jordyn Wahpekeche.

The Lady Huskies trailed by two runs when sophomore Ratzlaff ripped a single to open the fifth. Ratzlaff promptly stole her way to third base and then scored on a passed ball. While they later load the bases, the PHS girls were denied another run. The inning ended — following a controversial call at home plate — with the Doggers ahead by a run. Clark made it a 3-1 game when she came around following a two-out double in the top of the sixth.

Wahkepeche started the Pawhuska sixth by singling. She scored on a passed ball after Sellers moved her up with an infield hit. The tying run made it to third base with just one down, but the Lady Huskies could get it no further before the third out of the inning ended the contest.

No. 2 Sulphur 11, Huskies 4

Pawhuska landed the first punch in its meeting with the No. 3-ranked team in Class 3A — the Sulphur Lady Bulldogs — during its second outing at the Sperry tourney.

After Malaske held the Bulldogs without a run in the top of the first, Wahpekeche sparked a Lady Huskie rally in the home half of the inning with a one-out single. An infield single by Kirk set off some wild base running that didn’t end until Wahpekeche had scored. Sellers gave Pawhuska a 2-0 advantage with an RBI single.

Sulphur tied it with a pair in the second and then exploded for eight runs in the third en route to an 11-4 win in four innings. Following the Bulldogs’ big rally, the Lady Huskies picked up two more runs in the third on a walk by Kirk, a single by Sellers and, with two outs, an RBI hit to center by Phillippi.

PHS matched Sulphur by getting seven hits, including the two by Sellers and a double in the second by Malaske. Six errors doomed the Lady Huskie cause, however.

The Lady Bulldogs went on to claim the Sperry championship Saturday with a win over 13th-ranked Verdigris by a score — 13-5 — not too unlike the one they posted against the Lady Huskies. After improving its season record to 25-4, Sulphur was moved up to the second spot (behind Tahlequah Sequoyah) in new OSSAA rankings released Monday.

Sperry 8, Lady Huskies 2

Sweet home scheduling sent the Pawhuska girls out against the host Lady Pirates in the opening round of the tournament at Sperry.

The Lady Huskies fell behind by five runs in the first when Sperry staged a two-out rally highlighted by a pair of well-stroked doubles. Alexis Martin, after doubling to open the PHS second, got the Lady Huskies on the board when she scored on a ground out.

Malaske led off the third with a single before moving around to the other corner on bunts by Wahpekeche and Kirk. A passed ball then scored Malaske with the second Lady Huskie run. Three Sperry runs in the fourth put the game out of reach.

Cleveland 12,

PHS 8

In a game played last Tuesday (Sept. 10), the Lady Huskies made a bid to continue their recent winning ways during a home matchup with Cleveland — a Class 4A team that four days earlier had demolished them by a 14-1 count in the Dewey Tournament.

With four-run uprisings in the third and fifth innings, Pawhuska battled back to within a run of the Lady Tigers. But that was as close as Lady Huskies got as the visitors pulled away to a 12-8 triumph. Cleveland had taken an early 3-0 lead with a run in the first and two more in the second off Lady Huskie starting pitcher Breanna Redeagle. Pawhuska then notched its first four-spot on its second at-bat.

Sellers started things with a single and a one-out hit by Ratzlaff set the table for Upchurch, who stroked a two-out liner to right to chase home the first two PHS runs. Following a Malaske single, Wahpekeche doubled home Upchurch and Martin (who had reached on a walk) to take a 4-3 advantage.

Cleveland went back out front by scoring three times in the third. The Lady Tigers extended their lead to 9-4 in the fifth when they sent another three runs across the plate. In the bottom of the fifth, though, another four-run PHS eruption closed the gap to one.

After a walk to Sellers, an error and a Ratzlaff single loaded the bases, Pawhuska scored once off an error and again on a sacrifice fly by Upchurch. A two-run double by Martin made it 9-8 and the Lady Huskies got another hit (by Malaske), but Cleveland survived the inning still holding on to a one-run lead.

The Tigers strung together a double and three singles that produced three insurance runs in the seventh. Sophomore pitcher Kynzi Smith then closed out the Cleveland victory in relief of starter Brittany Hickerson. For PHS, Malaske took over for Redeagle in the fifth and hurled the final 2 2/3 innings.

Freshman Upchurch knocked in three runs for the Lady Huskies, who unleashed a nine-hit attack that saw seven starters bat their way on base. Cleveland finished with 13 hits.

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