By Jeremy McDonald
DAYTON, Ore.– For Scio Softball, it was another playoff-isc big game versus a Top-Five team in Dayton on the road.
It took just five innings for Lady Loggers to find their bats and showcase them as many times this season, but getting to that point took some work.
Early on, it looked as a Top-Five match-up as both teams traded blows with the Lady Pirates taking a 4-2 lead into the top of the fifth following a three-run inning.
But, just as quickly as Dayton turned Scio’s 2-1 lead into a 4-2 in favor of them, the Loggers eventually timed the pitching of a very good Haley Couch in the top half of the fifth inning for six hits, three which were doubles, and three walks to quickly turn their fortunes around as they regained the lead for good up 9-4.
“That was a huge confidence booster, we got up on them at the beginning and then we had a little bit of a low,” said Rheanna McDaniels who contributed two RBIs in the win Monday. “And usually when we get down on ourselves, but this game was super huge for us and coming back and being able to battle with our bats.
“We came out super tough and then I think we let it go a little bit, but then it was really huge to reel it back and focus up and battle at the plate. That was our hugest accomplishment.”
Head Coach Jim Mask told his team over the next inning or so to not underestimate the Pirates, they’re a good team and will rally if they’re giving the chance.
Scio answered the bell as they’ve done since the bottom of their fourth inning with their defense, Pollard led the way with a 77-pitch, five-strikeout game and her and her defense held Dayton to three hits and handed the Lady Pirates just their second loss of their season.
“We knew we made some errors but we settled down and kept hitting and didn’t get discourage or anything,” said Pollard on settling in and answering the bell.
The win for the Lady Loggers, not just moved them up to number two in the State with the quality win, they also start this marathon week that features between Monday and Saturday’s doubleheader versus Colton with a confidence boosting win to start it.
“It feels absoultely wonderful,” starts Pollard. “They beat Rainier and Rainier beat us so this give us so much more confidence and makes us feel really good playing Rainier and going into the playoffs.
“It feels really good starting this week because we have about six games this week so starting it off with a win for one and beating Dayton is even better.”
And there was some fun to the win as well, during a timeout in the sixth or seventh inning, the outfield of McDaniels, McKenzie Reger and Olivia Zeihler came together in Center Field and started to pick dandelions at a furious pace; kind of a Battle of Dandelions of sorts.
But hey, that what they do as a Outfield Crew.
“Our outfielders are so close and we’re the goofiest people on the team and it’s so much fun,” said McDaniels. “All of us are the same and we just love to have fun out there and there’s never a day where one of us out there cracking jokes at each other,getting down on each other.
“If one person has an error, or mistake, the other person is always there to pick it up, tell them a little joke and then they’re good.”
Despite a hit-by-pitch in the third, Ashton Phillips went 4-for-4 with a game-high three RBIs. McDaniels, Brooke Young, Kasidee Parazoo and Nora Mikolas all had two RBIs each.
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Photos By Jeremy McDonald