HEATH – The tremendous winning streak had to end eventually, and a great season ended with it.
The Whitesboro softball team fell to Grandview in the regional quarterfinals at Rockwall-Heath High School. Grandview won 2-1 Friday night, then finished the sweep 10-1 Saturday afternoon.
Whitesboro (20-11-1) entered the series on a 17-game winning streak dating back to the district opener against Pilot Point. The Lady Cats hadn’t lost since March 5.
No. 10 Grandview (32-3) swept Whitesboro after eliminating the reigning Class 3A state champions the round prior. The Lady Zebras’ only losses this season have come against the top-ranked teams from 4A and 2A and the No. 3 team in 6A.
Whitesboro coach Preslee Gallaway said the Lady Cats played hard both days.
“There’s nothing to be ashamed of,” Gallaway said. “We got a young team. We’re going to miss Karley (Wolf). We got a few coming in. I’m proud of them. They worked hard.”
The first game was a pitcher’s duel. Grandview took a 1-0 lead in the third inning on a sacrifice fly. Tylar Olsen tied the game in the top of the sixth with an RBI single, scoring Melanie Baldwin. Grandview responded in the bottom half by retaking the lead on an RBI single from Olivia Bauerschlag.
Whitesboro pitcher Karley Wolf allowed 1 earned run on three hits. The Lady Cats got six hits off Caydin Blackmon but had trouble bringing home the runners.
After a narrow victory in game one, Grandview came out hot in game two. The Lady Zebras scored 7 runs in the first two innings.
Maci Graves took over at pitcher at the start of the third inning and slowed down Grandview’s offense. She pitched the remaining five innings, allowing 1 earned run on four hits. She struck out three hitters and walked three.
Gallaway said Graves did an amazing job.
“She wasn’t even warmed up,” Gallaway said. “She warmed up for about two minutes, and then she went out there and gave me her best. She grinds ‘till she can’t, and I love that about her. I’m proud of them, especially Maci.”
Like game one, the Lady Cats got a few hits but couldn’t get them consecutively. After Blackmon retired the first eight hitters of the game, Maddy Cole got aboard in the bottom of the third with a two-out double. Bradi Gallaway followed with an RBI single. Whitesboro got three hits the rest of the game, each in a different inning. Wolf had two, and Olivia Hildebrand had the other.
Gallaway said facing a great team like Grandview, along with the tough non-district schedule Whitesboro played, provided plenty of experience for the Lady Cats as they look to come back strong next season.
“We got a lot of young ones,” Gallaway said. “I told them that’s great experience for next year. We better be back here next year. We obviously got work to do, but I know they can do it. We work hard every day, so, they’re ready for it.”