In one of Chaparral’s biggest games of the season so far, the Birds went to Arcadia for their third game of the week but were handed their first loss in 12 games, losing 9-2.
In the top of the 1st, Haley Boxwell (Jr.) reached on a single to right field, but pinch runner Amber Schweigert (Fr.) was thrown out at second, breaking up the possible double play on a hard hit ball to short stop by Maggie Thurston (Sr.). The Firebirds ended the top of the first inning unable to push a run across. Arcadia’s bats started off hot scoring 3 runs on 3 hits and multiple errors by Chaparral. In the bottom of the 1st, Thurston started the game on the mound for the Birds, striking out the leadoff Haley Denning (Sr.) for Arcadia. Kelly Flynn (Sr.) singled to left field to get the first runner on for the Titans, then Regan Kerr (Sr.) hit a shot to center field sending it to the fence past Kalyn Baker (So.) allowing Flynn to reach 3rd on the error and putting Kerr on second. Mae Forshey (Sr.) then scored both Flynn and Kerr, hitting another ball to center and advancing to second on the throw home. Another single from Jordyn Pender (Jr.) sent Forshey to third, putting runners on 1st and 3rd with 1 out for the Birds. Morgan Ash (Sr.) then hit a ball deep in the hole to shortstop Callie Honig (Fr.), causing Honig to hold the ball and allowing Forshey to score while Pender advanced to second. The Titans threatened to add more to the board, loading the bases with another hit by Keeley Yeager (So.), but Thurston was able to force a pop up to third from Jade Ng (Jr.) getting a second out. Thurston then struck out Maria Serrato (Sr.) for the third out.
In the top of the 2nd, Sammy Worth got on with a two out single to left field, but she was unable to score as Kalyn Baker (So.) hit a shot down the third base line that was scooped up by the third baseman for the third out. Arcadia then added one more to the board in the bottom of the inning, starting with a lead off single on a soft slap to third by Denning. Denning then advanced to second on a past ball, stole third, and scored on a sacrifice fly hit to left field by Kerr. Thurston then forced a fly out to Maddie Myers (So.) in right field for the third out, but the Birds were now down 0-4 with the third inning coming up.
In the top of the 3rd, Maddie Myers hit a lead off line drive up the middle for a single, and Mia Rushton (So.) advanced Myers to second while beating out a bunt single down the third base line. Boxwell then hit a line drive to shortstop Denning, doubling up Myers on the throw for two quick outs. Rushton stole second, advanced to third on a passed ball, and scored on a shot through the left side by Maggie Thurston (Sr.). Lauren Werning (So.) kept things going, hitting a line drive over Denning to advance pinch runner Katie Humburg (So.) to second. As the Birds threatened to score more, Callie Honig (Fr.) just missed a pitch hitting a high pop up to first base for the third out. The Firebird’s defense held strong in the bottom of the third, allowing no runs to score. Thurston forced Pender to ground out to Rushton at second base and struck out Ash for two outs. Keeley Yeager (So.) then reached first on a bunt single, but Thurston forced a pop-up to herself from Ng to end the inning.
In the top of the 4th, Arcadia’s defense returned the favor, allowing 0 runs to score and getting a 3-up-3-down inning on defense themselves, forcing a fly out from Allie Van Hoveln (So.) to center, striking out Worth, and causing Baker to ground out to the pitcher. The Titans then added 2 more runs on 3 hits in the bottom of the 4th, starting things off with back-to-back singles from Serrato and Denning. Serrato stole second and advanced to third on Denning’s soft slap, putting runners on first and third with no outs. Allie Van Hoveln (So.) then got a ground ball from Flynn, holding Serrato at third while throwing Flynn out a first. Chaparral then made a pitching change, putting Hannah Ross (Jr.) in for Thurston. After an 8 pitch at bat, Ross put Kerr on first with a walk, loading the bases for Forshey who hit a single to left center, scoring both Serrato and Denning. Ross then cut the Titans off there, striking out Pender and Ash for the second and third outs of the inning.
With Arcadia leading 6-1, the Birds tried to jump start a rally in the top of the 5th, but were unable to get a run across despite a bases loaded threat with Boxwell, Thurston, and Werning all reaching base with two outs. With the bases loaded, the Titans made a pitching change to Jade Ng to face Callie Honig, and Ng was able to force a fly out from Honig to right field getting the Titans out of the half inning still leading 6-1. Ross stayed strong on the mound for the Birds, striking out both Yeager and Ng for two outs and forcing a ground out from Serrato for a 3-up-3-down inning.
In the top of the 6th, Arcadia once again held the Birds on defense, getting a 3-up-3-down inning themselves forcing a ground out from Van Hoveln, a fly out from Worth, and a line out from pinch hitter Madisyn Matello (Sr.). The Titans added some insurance in the bottom of the 6th, scoring 3 runs on 2 hits and another few errors by Chaparral. Denning led things off for the Titans, reaching first on a bobbled ball by Ross. Denning then beat out a toss to second in an attempt to get the lead runner by Chaparral. Denning then stole third base, taking off on an attempted pick off to second. With runners on first and third with no outs, Kerr hit shot down the third base line, causing Van Hoveln to miss which allowed Denning to score, advanced Flynn to third, and allowed Kerr to reach second herself. Flynn and Kerr subsequently scored on another shot to center from Forshey. Pender then hit another single, advancing Forshey to third and advancing herself to second on the throw home from Kalyn Baker to tag Forshey out. Pender then stole third threatening to add another for the Titans, but Ross forced two ground outs to Van Hoveln and Honig for the second and third outs and an end to the bottom of the 6th inning.
With time running out, the Birds were down 9-1, needing at least 8 runs to keep the game going. With Ng striking out Myers for the first out, Rushton laid down a bunt to reach first and put one runner on. Haley Boxwell then came up, hitting a shot to left field and scoring Rushton, but Boxwell was thrown out trying to take third on the hit. Thurston then popped up to third base for the third and final out of the game.
Chaparral takes the loss 2-9. Chaparral will face Arcadia again in a home game on Tuesday April 17th.