By Mike Pilosof
Photo by Adam Shrimplin
Dodge City, KS-The Broncbusters split their two games on Thursday afternoon, beating McCook 11-7 in the opener before dropping the finale 8-7.
In game one, Garden City got off to a quick start. Ariel Denney scored on an RBI groundout and Devin Hernandez stole home for a 2-0 lead in the first. The Broncbusters added two more in the third on Gaby Hernandez's two-run single to make it 4-0.
McCook got a run back in the top of the fourth before the Broncbusters plated two in the their half when Megan Jankiewicz scored on a passed ball and (Devin) Hernandez drew a bases-loaded walk. Then in the fifth, Audrey Graf slapped a run-scoring single to push the lead to 7-1.
Things got a little dicey in the top of the sixth. The Indians scored five times, capped by Abby Kalinksi's pinch-hit, two-run single that cut the Broncbuster lead to 7-5. That's when Denney did some major damage control, getting Chanel Siebenthal to line out to right before inducing a fly out and a ground out to end the threat.
Garden City added some insurance in the bottom of the inning. (Devin) Hernandez singled home a run, and Madison Biller knocked in two. That was followed up by Kaylee Rogers' RBI single that bumped the Broncbusters' lead to 11-5.
McCook made one more push in the seventh when Emma McLean drilled a two-run shot off of Denney. But after walking Hannah Jenson, Denney got back-to-back flyouts to end the game.
Denney improved to 1-2 in the circle, giving up seven runs on 12 hits while striking out six. (Gabby) Hernandez drove in three runs, and six Broncbusters collected multi-hit games.
Elta Van Burgsteden took the loss for McCook, getting roughed up for 11 runs on 13 hits in five innings.
In the second game, Garden City nearly dug themselves out of an early hole.
With two on and two out, trailing 5-1 in the third, Graf singled home biller and Vivian Lopez's hot shot scored Jankiewicz from third. An inning later, Denney tied the game with one swing, smashing a two-run homer to center off of Shae Muggridge that made it 5-5.
But in the seventh, a Garden City miscue (an error on Kaylee Rogers at first) allowed a runner to reach before Jerusha Miner blasted a two-run bomb to put McCook on top 7-5. Three batters later, Kalinksi ripped a two-out double, giving the Indians an 8-5 advantage.
Garden City gave themselves a chance in the seventh once Graf plastered a two-run homer to center. But with the tying run at the plate, Lopez grounded out to the pitcher to end the game.
Madison Biller took the loss for the Broncbusters, giving up three runs on five hits in four innings. Her counterpart Muggridge, notched the win-going seven innings and allowing seven runs on 11 hits.