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Fri. Jul 19th, 2024

Washington softball suffers first SEC loss

By meerna Jun25,2024
Washington softball suffers first SEC loss

The Demons are struggling in the conference battle against Keokuk

Washington's Isabella Salazar plays on the court during the Demon's 7-4 loss to Keokuk, Thursday, June 20, 2024. (Hunter Moeller/The Union)

Washington’s Isabella Salazar plays on the court during the Demon’s 7-4 loss to Keokuk, Thursday, June 20, 2024. (Hunter Moeller/The Union)

WASHINGTON — To say the least, Washington softball has been dominant against Southeastern Conference opponents this season.

Before the Demons’ SEC matchup with Keokuk on Thursday night, their closest conference matchup was a 6-4 win over Fort Madison in the first week of June.

Washington's Rylee Libe throws the ball to first during the Demon's loss to Keokuk on Thursday, June 20, 2024. (Hunter Moeller/The Union)

Washington’s Rylee Libe throws the ball to first during the Demon’s loss to Keokuk on Thursday, June 20, 2024. (Hunter Moeller/The Union)

Meanwhile, in the previous two matchups against Keokuk, the Demons defeated the Chiefs 30-6.

However, it was Keokuk who had the last laugh in the teams’ final regular-season matchup, 7-4.

No. 8 Washington fell behind early.

Both teams scored no points in the first frame, but Keokuk took control in the second and third quarters.

The Chiefs scored two runs in both the second and third inning, scoring a triple and scoring a run in the second inning, while Washington’s error brought the field to two more runs in the third.

Washington's Lauren Hinrichsen looks to catch the ball on third down during the Demons vs. Keokuk matchup on Thursday, June 20, 2024. Washington lost to Cheifs 7-4.  (Hunter Moeller/Union)

Washington’s Lauren Hinrichsen looks to catch the ball on third down during the Demon’s matchup against Keokuk on Thursday, June 20, 2024. Washington lost to Cheifs 7-4. (Hunter Moeller/Union)

Despite falling behind 4-0, the Demons remained focused.

In the bottom half of the fourth quarter, Washington stormed back. After Colbie Greiner was hit by a pitch to start the inning, she later scored on Rylee Libe’s RBI single to get the Demons on the board.

On the next drive, Lauren Hinrichsen took a step and Kendall Hinrichsen followed it with a hard drive to second that the Chief defense couldn’t stop.

Hinrichsen singled to second, and Washington cut the Keokuka lead to 4-3 with two more runs.

Washington's Emery Walton hits the bottom half of the field at Rylee Libe on Thursday, June 20, 2024, against Keokuk.  (Hunter Moeller/Union)

Washington’s Emery Walton hits the bottom half of the field at Rylee Libe on Thursday, June 20, 2024, against Keokuk. (Hunter Moeller/Union)

This wasn’t the end. The best player in the order was Leighton Salazar, who evened the score with an RBI double.

Although the Demons came back tied, they were never able to take the lead.

For the next four rounds, both teams did not score any points, and the match was decided in the ninth round.

In the top half of the ninth, the Chiefs regained the lead with a three-run lead, highlighted by a two-run home run in the park.

Washington had runners on first and second midway through the inning but was unable to reach the finish line.

With the loss, Washington is 21-5 on the season and 11-1 in conference play.

By meerna

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