Small steps and one goal at a time. That is the softball philosophy of the Cleveland Lady Raiders for the time being.
Cleveland reached one of its goals against Silverdale Baptist Academy Thursday at Brenda McKenzie Stadium, but fell short of their ultimate goal of a win. The Lady Seahawks eventually came out on the top end of a 5-4, 10-inning affair.
“Baby steps, but they played a good game,” said Lady Raiders coach Connie Stobert. “They didn’t beat themselves like they have the past few games. We had a goal today of four errors or less. We had two on defense and one on offense, so we were under our goal. Baby steps. They found a way to kind of relax and get in the mode. I talked about that a lot at practice, just relaxing and catch and throw. They did a good job of that and I was really proud of the way they played.”
Silverdale scored single runs in the first and third innings and held the 2-0 lead until the bottom of the fourth.
The Lady Raiders cut the lead in half when Brittany Arnold walked and later scored on a Silverdale throwing error.
Cleveland tied it up in the bottom half of the seventh when Yoshi Hooks walked and stole second and third. Hooks raced home on a line shot off the bat of Jacora Parker that caromed off the glove of the Lady Seahawks glove.
Silverdale took a 3-2 lead in the eighth only to watch as the Lady Raiders manufactured another run to tie the game at 3-3.
Nanea Haruo hustled to first on a third strike wild pitch and stood on third after a sacrifice by Abbi Dye and another wild pitch. A pick-off throw to third missed the mark and scooted into shallow left field.
After a scoreless ninth and the international tiebreaker rule in effect, SBA loaded the bases and scored twice on three singles to go up 5-3.
Taylor Yoder stood on second for the Lady Raiders in the bottom of the 10th and after moving to third on a sacrifice bunt by Arnold, scored on a fly to center off the bat of Haruo. The Cleveland catcher was left stranded when the Lady Seahawks ended the game on a groundout.
“They were able to answer back and just came up a bit shy. But they were able to answer back. It took them a while to get the bats going in the beginning. But, overall I was proud of the way they did,” said Stobert. “Yoshi had 10 strikeouts. She pitched a great game. We’re improving. That’s all I can ask for right now.”
LADY SEAHAWKS 5, LADY RAIDERS 4
Silverdale 101 000 010 2 — 5 7 3
Cleveland 000 100 110 1 — 4 6 2
WP: Katie Henderson. LP: Yoshi Hooks. Highlights: Lefew 2-5 (S); Hooks 2-5, Karlie Bledsoe 2-5 (C). Records: Silverdale 11-8; Cleveland 10-17.