Softball: Mavs earn state berth with 9-2 win over Hawks

Terrace pitcher Ashley Fitzgerald is closely watched from third base by Meadowdale's Julia Reuble.

Terrace pitcher Ashley Fitzgerald is closely watched from third base by Meadowdale’s Julia Reuble.

After grabbing victories in their initial 3A District 1 loser-out games on Thursday, the girls softball teams from Meadowdale and Mountlake Terrace high schools clashed for a third time this season, but with the stakes a little higher this time. The squads battled for third place in the district tourney and a berth at the WIAA 3A State Girls Championship.

The Meadowdale Mavericks grabbed the third-place trophy and the ticket to the state tournament with a 9-2 win over the Mountlake Terrace Hawks. Meadowdale will head to Lacey for the state tourney May 30-31 while Mountlake Terrace will put away their bats for another year.

After losing in Tuesday’s semifinal against eventual 3A District 1 champion Glacier Peak, Meadowdale responded with two decisive wins in Thursday’s consolation bracket games, starting with an 11-0 rout of Stanwood before defeating MTHS.

Mavericks Coach Dennis Hopkins said his squad came focused and prepared on Thursday following Tuesday’s loss to GP. “They were upset by losing to Glacier Peak, obviously, because they wanted to repeat a district championship,” he explained. “We’re younger for pitching. Last year we had the dominant pitcher; this year we have pretty good pitchers. We have a really good squad; they just had to work their way a little harder to get there.”

This is the third straight year Meadowdale has qualified for the 3A state championships; the Mavericks placed third in last year’s tourney.

The Mavericks left little doubt that they would claim that third-place district finish this year as they built up a 9-0 lead over the Hawks before giving up two runs late. Maverick Julia Reuble, younger sister of 2013 MHS grad and pitching sensation Allysa Reuble, pitched a complete game to earn the victory.

Before Terrace picked up their two runs in the sixth inning, they had a chance to get back into the game in the fifth when they loaded the bases with no outs. But a strikeout, a fly out and a pop out quickly ended the scoring threat. The Hawks also failed to score after loading the bases in the third inning.

Terrace also committed three errors in the contest, giving Meadowdale plenty of opportunities to keep innings alive and put runs on the board. “For some reason they’ve got our number and our defense falls apart against them,” noted MTHS Coach Shannon Rasmussen. “I don’t know what goes on there, but all three games (we commit) a number of errors and you just can’t give away runs to a team like that,” she said.

“Give Meadowdale credit; they’re a great team and they capitalized on those mistakes,” Rasmussen added.

The Hawks had lost their previous outings against Meadowdale this season 11-1 and 14-1.

MTHS Softball vs. Meadowdale, May 22 (third place game of district tourney)
Mountlake Terrace 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 — 2
Meadowdale 3 2 0 2 2 0 x — 9
Winning pitcher: Julia Reuble (Meadowdale)
Losing pitcher: Gabby Calhoun (Mountlake Terrace)
Records: Mountlake Terrace 12-12; Meadowdale 19-3

MTHS Softball vs. Everett, May 22 (third round loser-out game of district tourney)
Terrace 0 0 0 7 0 4 x — 11
Everett 0 0 0 0 0 1 x — 1
Winning pitcher: Gabby Calhoun (MTHS)

Meadowdale vs. Stanwood, May 22 (third round loser-out game of district tourney)
Meadowdale 11 – Stanwood 0

– Story and photos by Doug Petrowski/MLTnews

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