For the second consecutive season, Yelm traveled to Bellevue College for an invitational on Friday, March 24, as the softball team recorded a 13-4 victory over Ellensburg High School.
Mallory Hoke was the starting pitcher for Yelm, while Sienna Pascoe started on the mound for Ellensburg.
The Tornados got off to a fast start in the first inning, scoring five runs including a two-RBI single by Austin Hitchner. Ellensburg scored three runs in the inning, which included two home runs by Alexis Gillespie and Chante Leadercharge, bringing the score to 5-3.
The Tornados scored again in the third inning, but their biggest inning of the game came in the fourth. Yelm scored six runs after RBIs from Miranda Hunt, Caylee Roberts, Hoke and Hitchner, bringing the team’s lead to 12-3.
Ellensburg was able to get one run back in the bottom of the fourth inning to cut its deficit to eight runs, but were shut out for the remainder of the contest. Yelm also added another run in the fifth inning to finalize its 13-4 win.
The Tornados collected 11 total hits on the day. Leading the offensive explosion was Hoke, Hunt and Madisyn Erickson, who all collected multiple-hit games. Hoke led the Tornados at the plate, going 3 for 3 during the game.
Yelm was also scheduled to play East Valley High School at the invitational after they defeated Ellensburg High School, but the game was rained out.
Then on Monday, March 28, Yelm played its first conference game of the year against Gig Harbor at home.
Coach Lindsay Walton said the team left too many runners stranded and had costly errors in the field during the 7-4 loss to the Tides.
Walton said Morgan Schackel had some great at bats to get innings going and noted Carley Waite played great in left field. She added that Erickson had a strong performance at the plate.
Hoke started for the Tornados on the mound and Erickson relieved the starter in the fourth inning after Hoke sustained an elbow injury.
“We were unable to make adjustments against the first pitcher, which hurt us in the long run. Unfortunately our defense struggled while Maddie was on the mound,” Walton said.
The coach said she hoped the team would be able to clean up its defense and “have a better game all around” during a matchup they had scheduled against Peninsula at home on Tuesday, March 28.
Following that, Yelm was scheduled to face off against Timberline High School during an away game on Thursday, March 30.
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