The Waukee Warriors played the Dowling Catholic Maroons on Wednesday, July 5 for their final regular season game. The No. 1 ranked Warriors beat the Maroons 3-0.
“It feels good (to be ranked), but we don’t get too caught up in rankings,” said coach Carrie Eby. “it’s nice to have that, you know the girls have worked hard to get to where they are, but really at the end of the year, everybody has a clean slate.
The game was a quick one with out after out on both sides.
The Warriors only allowed Julia Bastian to get on base in the first inning when she hit a single. The Warriors started the game on a stronger note.
The Warriors’ first two batters, Logan Akason and Delaney Taylor, were able to start the inning by getting on base. Akason hit a single, but was quickly sent to third when Taylor hit a double.
Unfortunately, the Warriors couldn’t score before the inning ended as the Warriors’ next three batter were called out.
Once again, the Warrior defense was able to get the Maroons out immediately in the top of the inning.
In the bottom of the second inning, Kasey Costa and Kelli Fogt both hit singles to get to base. After two batters were called out, Akason was walked to first to load the bases.
Taylor then hit a double allowing both Costa and Fogt to make it back home for the first two runs of the game. The Warriors’ pitcher, Sarah Schaefer was up to bat next, but was struck out, ending the inning for the Warriors. The Warriors still led the game, though, 2-0.
“Kasey Costa has been seeing the ball really well lately, she did a nice job hitting,” said Eby. “Sarah, threw a nice game, she kept them off balance and defensively everyone stepped up.”
Neither the Maroons nor the Warriors were able to get a single batter on base during the third, fourth and fifth innings, allowing the score to remain at 2-0.
The Maroons looked as though they would score their first run in the sixth inning. Lauren Walters started the inning with a single and was followed with another single hit by McKenna Moses.
Walters and Moses both advanced a base when Hallie Ketcham hit a single. Unfortunately, Ketcham was thrown out at first and was followed by two more outs before the Maroons could score.
Morgan Nealey began the Warriors’ half of the inning with a home run. Nealey was followed by three outs to end the sixth inning for the Warriors.
Again. the Warriors had the first three Maroons out in the seventh inning, ending the game with the Warriors up 3-0.
“We came in with an aggressive approach, Dowling is a really good team,” said Eby. “They have a really good pitcher, Hannah Pals, who throws really well, we knew she throws a rise ball so the last few days we’ve been preparing for that. But, our mindset is really just kind of focusing on us and getting better every day.”
The Warriors will play in the Class 5A Region 1 Regional Semifinal game on Saturday, July 8 at 7:00 p.m. in Waukee. The Warriors’ opponent will be the winner of the Council Bluffs, Thomas Jefferson and Sioux City West Quarterfinal Game on Thursday, July 6.
“Really we’re just looking to stay kind of composed (in Regionals),” Eby said, “focus on us, stick to our process that we’ve been working on all season and just kind of attack.”