Whittell softball team meets Tonopah in first round on zone playoffs | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Whittell softball team meets Tonopah in first round on zone playoffs

Chad Sellmer, Tribune staff writer

Having your cake and eating it too is not something the Whittell softball team will enjoy this postseason.

The Warriors played a double header at Hawthorne on Saturday, hoping for a couple of wins that would have landed the team in a first place tie with Battle Mountain. That scenario may have allowed it to host the first round of the Northern Nevada 2A zone playoffs this week.

Instead, Whittell dropped both games by a score of 5-4 in what became a real nail-biter of a doubleheader between two previous first-place teams. Hawthorne, Battle Mountain and Whittell were all tied for first heading into weekend play. Whittell drops to third place to end the regular season.

Warriors manager Lindsay Wines said her team was the victim of small mistakes that eventually added up.

“Of their 10 runs, six of them were unearned,” Wines said. “It’s not that we made any major mistakes, but we made little ones they were able to capitalize on. We had a couple of innings where the little mistakes caught up with us.”

Whitney Gielow was 1 for 4, Kaitlin Willens 2 for 4, Anna Kingman 3 for 3, Ashley Wines 2 for 3 and Jackie Laurian was 1 for 3 for the Warriors in the first game.

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“Jackie had a great day for us. She hit the ball hard every time she was up and she made a couple of nice plays for us in the outfield,” Wines said.

In the second game, Gielow was 3 for 4, Willens 2 for 4, Kingman 2 for 4, Jessica Rickman 1 for 4, Wines 1 for 4, Holly Connelly 1 for 4, Laurian 1 for 3 and Natasha DeLucia 1 for 1.

“Holly came in to play third base for us because Sara Piccola was taking her S.A.T.s and she did a great job,” Wines added.

Ashley Wines pitched both games for the Warriors.

The Warriors conclude league with a 9-3 record and they are 15-10 overall.

The team travels to Battle Mountain on Friday for a first-round zone playoff game against Tonopah beginning at 11 a.m. Due to rezoning last season, two teams from Southern Nevada 2A are in the zone playoffs: Tonopah and White Pine.

Besides Hawthorne, Battle Mountain and Whittell, no other team in the Northern playoffs are above .500, Wines said.

“It’s a single-elimination tournament, so if we win our first two games we go to the state tourney,” she said, adding that she expects the Warriors to play league leader Battle Mountain in the second playoff game.

Battle Mountain softball coach Rod Pruett, 55, died unexpectedly April 30 after teaching and coaching at the school for 19 years. Wines said she expects the team to be “motivated” in the playoffs.