Putnam diamond girls stumble
The Kingsmen come up short in games with McMinnville and West Salem
It was an up-and-down spring break for the Rex Putnam Kingsmen, as they won only two of five games, while competing with some of the top high school softball teams in the state.
The Kingsmen dropped a doubleheader to defending Pacific Conference champion McMinnville (1-0 and 4-3 in 10 innings) on March 22.
They played three games in a rain-shortened round-robin tournament in Medford March 24-25, defeating Southridge 6-3 and defending Southwest conference champion Roseburg 1-0, but coming up short in a game with defending Central Valley League champion West Salem, 3-2.
Veteran pitcher Lauren Harvey and freshman utility player Megan Malvick proved the difference in the 1-0 win over Roseburg.
Harvey pitched a complete game, striking out nine batters and walking no one, while scattering three hits. She was supported by error-free defensive play.
Malvick scored the game's only run in the top of the sixth, reaching on a base hit to right, advancing to second on an overthrow at first base, moving to third on a sacrifice bunt by Sami Parr, and scoring on a wild pitch.
The game was a confidence builder for the Kingsmen, who were without Harvey (illness) in the earlier games with Southridge and West Salem.
'We're playing pretty good ball right now,' said Putnam coach Tiffany Strnad. 'We played with a lot of intensity and ended our [spring break trip to Medford] on a positive note.'
Susan Wood pitched in the games with Southridge and West Salem. Wood struck out two and walked three, while allowing four hits in the six-inning time limit loss to West Salem; the junior reserve pitcher struck out two, walked three and gave up five hits in the 6-3 win over Southridge.
But it was defensive lapses that proved costly in the loss to West Salem. The Kingsmen committed two errors in the 3-2 loss and two of the Titans' runs were unearned.
Parr hit a solo home run in the win over Southridge.
The Kingsmen put the Skyhawks away in the fourth inning of the five-inning time limit game, when they scored four times on base hits by Emily Kirk and Malvick, and four walks.
Sophomore infielder Katie Parr and junior outfielder Katie Bennett both scored in the fifth inning of the game with West Salem. Parr singled, stole a base, advanced on a base hit by her older sister Sami, and scored on an illegal pitch. Bennett reached as a hit batsman, advanced on Sami's single and a groundout, and scored on a groundout by Ronni Sayres.
The Kingsmen (4-3, 2-0) return to Three Rivers League play this week. They play at Oregon City today and they host Lake Oswego Friday at 4:30 p.m.