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State B-C softball: Thompson Falls, Conrad win before Day 1 halted

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Posted at 5:30 PM, May 25, 2023

ANACONDA — The first round of the State B-C softball tournament got underway in Anaconda on Thursday, though it didn't last long.

Thompson Falls and Conrad scored opening-round upsets before inclement weather forced the postponement of the remainder of Day 1. The other two quarterfinal games between Florence and Huntley Project, and Stillwater and Manhattan were halted after a rain delay that lasted over and hour and caused the fields to become unplayable.

The two games will resume Friday at 8 a.m. Project was leading Florence 4-0 in the top of the first while Stillwater led Manhattan 1-0 in the bottom of the first.

Thompson Falls 12, Shepherd 4

Thompson Falls, the No. 4 seed out of the West, started the tournament off with a bang by topping No. 1 seed from the East Shepherd, 12-4, at the Charlotte Yeoman Complex in Anaconda.

Teagan Saner and Sarah Koskela both hit two-run home runs for the Blue Hawks. Saner's came in the top of the fifth to give Thompson Falls an 8-0 lead. Then in the top of the sixth, Koskela followed up with a two-run shot that made it 10-2 as Thompson Falls left no doubt to get the upset.

PHOTOS: STATE B-C SOFTBALL IN ANACONDA

The Blue Hawks jumped to a quick 4-0 lead after two innings thanks to bases loaded walks and a wild pitch in the second inning. The scoring picked back up in the fifth as Koskela hit an RBI double to make it 5-0, followed by an RBI double by Gabi Hannum before Saner's home run.

Shepherd found some success in the bottom of the fifth as Karli Gooodell hit a solo home run. The Fillies tacked on two more runs in the bottom of the sixth, but the deficit was too much to overcome as Thompson Falls ran away with the win.

Olivia Fitchett handled the pitching duties for Thompson Falls, pitching a complete game for the win.

Thompson Falls will play Conrad-Choteau in the next round at 10 a.m. on Friday. Shepherd will play Mission-Arlee-Charlo at noon on Friday in a loser-out game.

Conrad 7, Mission-Arlee-Charlo 4

Conrad picked up the first-round upset of Mission-Arlee-Charlo, 7-4, to advance to the next round. Conrad entered as the No. 3 seed from the East while MAC was the No. 2 seed from the West.

Maggie Bender towed the hill for Conrad and came up clutch on offense with an RBI single in the first inning to make it 1-0 to start.

Evangelene Denzer hit an RBI double in the third inning to make it 2-0, then Bender added another RBI single to make it 3-0.

MAC responded in the bottom of the fourth, but Conrad again extended its lead to 5-1 after a two-RBI double by Ashlee Stokes, then Zoey Pogreba added another run to make it 6-1.

MAC began coming back in the bottom in the fifth. Maia Christopher hit an RBI double to make it 6-2, then Jerny Crawford followed up with an RBI single. Izzy Evans added a sacrifice fly to drive in another run to make it 6-4, but that's as close as MAC got.

MAC got a pair of runners on to start the seventh inning but Bender and the defense clamped down to get three straight outs to seal the upset win.