DAYTON – The Spring Creek softball team’s season has been one of streaks.
The Lady Spartans opened the year with five-consecutive losses in the Division 3A North, won four games in a row and recently lost three straight.
Following Thursday’s 17-2 loss in four innings Thursday against Fernley, Spring Creek dropped each of its contests in Dayton – opening the series with a 5-2 loss in a tight, low-scoring ballgame and closing the road trip with a lopsided shutout of 12-0.
The Lady Spartans were retired in order in the top of the first, returning the favor in the bottom half – junior Hailey Watson catching a fly ball in left field, junior pitcher Shawnee Walters-Haas firing a strikeout and fielding a groundball back to the circle.
Spring Creek threatened to score in the top of the second, a single by sophomore Jaycee Freyensee followed by a double from Walters-Haas to center field.
However, runners were stranded on the corners with a strikeout and a popup to foul ground near first base.
Dayton took a 2-0 lead in the bottom half.
Junior Julie Rogacs reached with a leadoff error at shortstop, senior Elizabeth Vincent went for a one-out single to short – Haas tossing her second K of the inning.
With two away, the Lady Spartans could not get off the field.
Junior Shaye Thompson scored freshman Alissa Paterson with a base knock to right field, and Vincent stole home as Thompson took second – the double swipe giving the Lady Dust Devils a 2-0 advantage.
Senior Rae Ann Chavez drew a leadoff walk in the top of the third, and Watson reached on a two-out error at second base – Spring Creek stranding both with a popup back to the pitcher.
In the bottom of the third, Dayton added to its lead.
Junior Marissa Hein drew a one-out walk and scored on a double to center field by senior Caleigh Onstott.
Spring Creek benefited from a flurry of free passes in the top of the fourth.
Walters-Haas drew a one-out walk on a full count, freshman Taya Grasmick watching four straight balls out of the zone.
Junior Ashton Moon advanced the runners with sacrifice bunt, and the Lady Spartans found the scoreboard with consecutive walks – the first to Chavez loading the bases and the free pass to freshman Nyha Harris driving in sophomore courtesy runner Anessa Chiquete.
A groundout into a fielder’s choice ended the threat and left the bases full.
Vincent led off with a single in the bottom half, but Spring Creek sat down the next-three hitters in order.
The Lady Spartans pulled to within one in the top of the fifth on a mighty swing, Freyensee smoking a solo home run to left field.
In the bottom half, Dayton went back up two – junior Amanda Woitas leading off with a solo bomb to left.
After consecutive one-out singles to Onstott and Rogacs, Spring Creek avoided further damage with fly outs to Harris in right field and Grasmick at short.
Spring Creek went three-up, three-down in the top of the sixth and Dayton added an insurance run in the bottom of the inning.
Junior Tamia Powell started the frame with a triple down the third-base line and Thompson walked, Dayton using another double steal for a run – Thompson out at second but Powell rolling home for a three-run lead.
Spring Creek went quietly in the top of the seventh – falling in order for the third time – opening the series with a 5-2 loss.
Freyensee (2-for-3) notched two of Spring Creek’s three hits, going for a single and a solo homer for an RBI.
The Lady Spartans’ other hit went for a double off the bat of Walters-Haas (1-for-2).
In the circle, Walters-Haas allowed five runs (three earned) on eight hits with five strikeouts and two walks over six innings.
Players not named Freyensee or Walters-Haas went 0-for-19 at the plate.
SPRING CREEK – 000 110 0 232
DAYTON – 021 011 X – 581
Spring Creek’s bats went from cold to ice cold in the second game of the series, Woitas shutting down the Lady Spartans to a single hit and shutting out Spring Creek 12-0.
Senior Aleaa McGill-Howe drove in Hein with a two-out single in the bottom of the first inning for a 1-0 lead, and Dayton went off in the second inning.
In the bottom of the second inning, the Lady Dust Devils scored seven runs and ripped four extra-base hits – including back-to-back bombs.
Thompson led off with a double and scored on an RBI single by Woitas for a 2-0 lead, the advantage reaching 3-0 on a double to left by Hein that crossed Paterson.
A walk to Onstott loaded the bases, a four-run homer by Rogacs – commonly referred to as a grand slam – cleared the paths and McGill-Howe turned on a pitch for a solo yard job on the next at-bat.
Just like that, 8-0.
Woitas and Hein went for consecutive singles in the bottom of the third, a base knock by Onstott driving in Woitas for a 9-0 lead.
Hein scored on a passed ball for a double-digit advantage, and Onstott crossed on a sacrifice fly by McGill-Howe for an 11-0 lead.
In the bottom of the fourth, Powell reached with a leadoff error at short and scored on a two-out single by Woitas to center for the final run.
Freshman Janeigha Stutesman led off the top of the fifth with Spring Creek’s lone hit – a single to short – and a two-out error at third base placed runners on the corners.
The game ended on the base paths, Dayton cutting down an attempted steal at second – the Lady Dust Devils rolling to a 12-0 victory in 4-1/2 innings.
Stutesman (1-for-2) accounted for the Lady Spartans only hit, Spring Creek batting 1-for-17 as a team.
Entering the game early in relief, Stutesman allowed five runs (three earned) on five hits with three strikeouts and a walk over three innings.
In the start, Walters-Haas gave up seven runs on eight hits with a strikeout and a free pass in one inning.
SPRING CREEK – 000 00 – 012
DAYTON – 173 1X – (12)(13)2
The Lady Spartans (4-8 in league) must bounce back quickly, facing a major challenge at home – hosting defending state champion Fallon (5-3 in league) at 2 p.m. Friday and noon Saturday, in Spring Creek.