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Tomahawks fall in state quarterfinals
SPOKANE — The Marysville-Pilchuck fast-pitch team had a roller-coaster season, leading them to their chance of qualifying for the State Championships. Although they lost in the quarterfinals late on May 25 at Merkel Field in Spokane, the team isn’t letting the loss get them down — they are using it as a way of learning what to do next year.
“It was a good experience,” said M-PHS Head Coach Aaron Zachry. “They will learn from this.”
The Tomahawks are a fairly young team, according to Zachry. “We started three freshmen this year,” he said. “We’ll have a lot of these girls returning next year.”
The year has been a little rough for the Tommies, with only one really solid pitcher, senior Monica Clow, on their team. “Monica pitched 22 or 23 games this year,” said Zachry. “We’ve had some trouble with pitching this season.” That issue may also be attributed to the relative youth of the team. Clow has been chosen as one of the All-Wesco 2012 Best Players as voted on by league coaches.
The first game of the day ended in a 4-3 win for the Tommies against Emerald Ridge. “We won our first game and went then to face Woodinville,” said Zachry. The team put up a good fight against Woodinville, keeping the score tied 1-1 going into the fourth inning.
“We battled them pretty good, but ended up losing 9-1,” Zachry said. Following the game against Marysville-Pilchuck, Woodinville managed to beat both Richland and Walla Walla to take the state title on May 26.
From there, the Tomahawks headed to the loser’s bracket to face Central Valley, where their pitcher began to struggle.
“It was our third game of the day,” said Zachry. “I think that Monica just ran out of gas.”
Clow pitched the two straight games in the early afternoon, so going into their third and final game against Central Valley, her arm became sore.
In the third inning, Hayley Fritz replaced Clow for the remainder of the game. “As a captain, she made it clear that she’d do whatever she needed to do,” said Zachry of Fritz, who normally plays second base and shortstop.
The final game was certainly a close one, and the team did not falter when losing Clow.
“It was a good game,” said Zachry. “We were up 5-1 and then tied 5-5 for a long time. They took the lead back 11-5, and then we took the lead back 12-11.”
Zachry is proud of how his team rallied and refused to give up hope for a victory. “That being said, they had a pitcher out in the third inning, they were down 11-5 and they could have given up. To come back and take the lead says a lot about their drive to win. They battled back, took the lead and played, but we just couldn’t hold them.”
Central Valley dealt the Tomahawks a 13-12 loss, sending them home from the championships with a lesson learned.
“It’s good for them to see how other teams played and see what it takes so they are ready for next year,” said Zachry.