ELKO – Unable to play on its home field, the Spring Creek softball team did not find Newton Field, in Elko, any more hospitable Friday.
The Lady Spartans only played four innings, falling by a final score of 16-0 – the Lowry Lady Buckaroos rolling early and often in the Division 3A North opener for each team.
Lowry junior Kelcey Cooper led off the game with a single, and junior Sierra Maestrejuan laid down a bunt and reached safely – a throwing error from first to third base allowing Cooper to score the first run.
Spring Creek junior Hailey Watson fielded a groundball at second base for the first out of the frame.
Senior Sydney Connors was hit by a pitch and stole second base, and senior Madi McClellan also reached base on an error at third – Maestrejuan and Connors cruising to the dish for a 3-0 lead.
McClellan was driven in by an RBI single from freshman Bailey Hayes for a 4-0 advantage, and the Lady Bucks loaded the bases with back-to-back base knocks.
The second out of the inning came on a strikeout by junior pitcher Shawnee Walters-Haas, but a come-backer to the mound was not handled – Hayes giving Lowry a 5-0 lead.
Back to the top of the lineup, Maestrejuan rifled a line-drive single to left field for an RBI – driving in freshman Kenzie Dowd Smith – and Connors tattooed a bases-clearing triple to right field for a 9-0 advantage in the bottom of the first.
The frame came to a close with a nice running catch in center field by sophomore Anessa Chiquete.
Spring Creek went three-up, three-down in the bottom of the first – Lowry sophomore pitcher Mackenzie Salas-Begay striking out the first and third batters.
The Lady Spartans quickly sat down the first-two Lowry hitters in the top of the second – senior Rae Ann Chavez fielding a short grounder and tagging out the runner on the first-base line and Watson taking another groundball at second base.
However, trouble loomed with an error on a single up the gut by Dowd Smith, the miscue in center allowing the ball to roll deep into outfield.
The next hitter drew a walk and placed runners at first and second, and deep house – junior Destiny Starkey hammering a home run to right-center field.
The three-run crank gave Lowry a 12-0 lead.
The frame closed with a catch by Chiquete in center field, but not before the damage had been done.
Spring Creek placed two runners on base in the bottom half of the second – senior Allie Thompson and Walters-Haas each drawing walks – but Salas-Begay struck out the side, fanning the first batter of the frame and sitting down the third and fifth hitters with looking Ks.
Lowry went on to add two runs in the top of the third and a pair in the top of the fourth, the defense ending the contest in the bottom half due to the 15-run rule.
The Lady Bucks handed the Lady Spartans a 16-0 beating in the league opener for each team.
The series will close with a single game – wrapping up the two-game series – first pitch set for noon Saturday, at Newton Field.