By Sam Conner —
The Winslow Lady Bulldogs finished second in the Payson Invitational Softball Tournament played on March 18 and 19. The Lady Bulldogs won five games before losing a tight championship game to Estrella Foothills, 6-5. Winslow improved its season record to 10-1 in the tournament.
The Lady Bulldogs’ first game resulted in a 1-0 win over 5A Dobson. Haley Hayes went the distance for Winslow giving up no runs on just three hits and a walk while fanning 11 batters. Winslow had only two hits in the contest, singles by Arianna Huerta and Gabby. Huerta scored the only run of the game in the third inning when she singled and went to third on Stacey’s single. Hayes sacrificed her home.
On Friday the Lady Bulldogs collected a 9-1 win over Camp Verde. Kelley Pugh got the win, working two innings and giving up no runs on a hit and two walks. Mallory Smith also worked two innings and gave up a run on one hit. Winslow scored four runs in each of the first two innings of a game shortened to four innings. The Lady Bulldogs had five players who were one for one in the game, led by Becca Perez, who had a triple. Mariah Ulibarri, Haley Hayes, Dallas Zamora and Renee Bollin were also one for one.
The last game on Friday for Winslow was a 10-0 win over Show Low, which was also shortened to four innings. Haley Hayes got the win, allowing one hit while fanning six. Winslow scored three runs in each of the first two innings and two more in the third and fourth frames. Megan Lymer led Winslow at the plate with a two for two night, including a double. Pugh had a double in her only trip to the plate, as did Haley Hayes. Zamora and Jodee Panana were also one for one. Melissa Jacobs, Bollin, Huerta and Perez were all one for two, with Perez smacking a double and Jacobs, a triple. Stacey and Ulibarri were each one for three.
On Saturday, Winslow defeated Santa Cruz 7-1 behind Pugh’s six-inning gem. She gave up one run on six hits and a walk while fanning four. Jaleisa Hayes and Smith were one for one, with Hayes having a double. Perez and Huerta were two for three, with Perez having a double. Pugh was one for two. Jacobs was one for three.
Winslow’s second game on Saturday was an 11-2 victory over Benson. Haley Hayes got the win, giving up two runs on two hits and a walk in five innings with six strikeouts. Smith worked two innings and did not allow a base runner. Taylor Baca was one for one at the plate. Lymer was two for three with a double, and Jaleisa Hayes was also two for three. Huerta was two for four with a pair of doubles. Bollin was one for three, as was Becca Perez. Haley Hayes, Jacobs and Ulibarri were all one for four.
The Lady Bulldogs took a tough 6-5 loss to Estrella Foothills in the championship game, their first loss of the season. Haley Hayes took the loss, giving up six runs on six hits and a walk in four innings. Smith worked three innings in relief and allowed just one hit.
Estrella Foothills took a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first on four hits. The lead grew to 4-0 in the third inning on a single and a sacrifice, and to 6-0 in the top of the fifth on a walk and a home run. Winslow scored all of its runs in the bottom of the sixth inning when Stacey, Ulibarri and Haley Hayes singled, Jacobs walked and Lymer doubled to cut the lead to 6-5. Unfortunately, the Lady Bulldogs failed to cash in a one-out single by Stacey in the top of the seventh.
Stacey and Haley Hayes were each two for three at the plate. Ulibarri was one for two. Lymer was one for three with a double. Jaleisa Hayes was also one for three.
The Lady Bulldogs were scheduled to host Blue Ridge on Monday and journey to Show Low on Tuesday. Their next home game will be at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 5, against Holbrook.