CLAREMORE — Catching lightning in a bottle is hard enough one time. Doing it twice is near impossible. The Claremore Lady Zebras discovered this Thursday evening during a 7-4 softball defeat at the Lady Zebra complex.
Earlier in the week, coach Keeli Garroutte’s Zebra squad scored four runs in the final inning to upset Sand Springs, 4-3.
In the Thursday contest, the girls waited until the last moment before trying to do it again.
Claremore came up with three runs, two coming on a home run by pinch hitter Reagan Jordan, but that was only half the number needed. Grove pitcher Mendy Pair slammed the door in order to preserve the victory.
The visiting Lady Ridgerunners jumped off with two runs in the first inning and never appeared in danger of being overtaken. They added solo runs in the third, fourth and fifth innings before tacking on two more in the final frame.
If the season-opening win had the makings of a dream finish, this one had a nightmare overcast. Claremore committed five errors in the field and each resulted in Grove runs.
Also working against the locals was a couple of mental mistakes running the bases. Two Zebras were tagged out on unforced attempts to reach third base.
It wasn’t a total disaster for Claremore. While the team was limited to four base hits, two of them sailed over the fence.
Alyssa Poorboy claimed the first Zebra home run of the season with a solo blast in the third inning.
Jordan kept Claremore’s hopes alive with her two-out shot in the seventh.
After two weak grounders for outs at first base, Zowie Davis doubled to left field. Freshman Terran Schornick followed with a shot to the shortstop and it appeared the game was over. Instead the fielder’s throw sailed past her first base teammate, allowing Davis to score.
Schornick was at second base when Jordan homered.
As quick as the three late runs came, the end was quicker. The batter grounded the ball to Melissa Barnes, who followed her eighth catch of the game with a perfect game-ending “strike” to first baseman Emily Cash.
Claremore’s only other base hit was first inning double by Alexis Williams.
Kaleigh Schumacher, starting pitcher for the Zebras, worked all seven innings. She struck out seven batters and walked one. Grove claimed four doubles among its nine hits.