INWOOD – All good things must come to an end, sometimes sooner than we may want. For the Patriots, this was their perfect record.
Due to the all-too-familiar rain, Washington was forced to move their Saturday doubleheader to Musselman’s field. The John Marshall Monarchs were the opponent set to open their final week of the regular season, and after a tiring week of tourney play, hosting a softball camp and a Thursday doubleheader, the Patriots would see their first defeat of the year in Game 2. All great leaders know, though, that one or two lost battles doesn't equate to losing the war – and for Washington, the Class AAA title is far from lost.
The Monarchs were set on beating the Patriots, picking up two back-to-back home runs to begin their comeback from a 5-0 deficit. Game 1 would end with the Monarchs picking up a 7-5 loss, but their momentum was far from going cold. Hannah Ruffner led Washington in the first game, picking up the win on the mound with a four-hit, three-earned run, three-walk line and a 2-for-4, four-RBI, one home run time at bat.
John Marshall would stoke the coals after the break, defeating the Patriots 5-3. Unlike their first two games against Washington, the Monarchs held Washington scoreless until the fifth inning while putting up two runs in the top of the third and delivering the dagger with three runs in the top of the sixth.
Kylie Condon (1-2, 1 R. 1 RBI, 1 HR), Jordyn Brown (1-3, 1 R, 1 RBI) and Brittany Cenate (0-3, 1 RBI) would account for the Patriots three runs in the loss. Condon’s single-run homer came in the final inning for the Patriots for the final run of the game.
Lydia Knutsen and Dori Kins were the big hitters in Game 2, each going 3-for-4 with one RBI. Knutsen was the only Monarch with a double, logging two in the final game of the doubleheader.
Taylor Cenate picked up the loss for the Patriots, giving up five earned runs and one walk while striking out four.
Ally South picked up the win for the Monarchs giving up all three earned runs and four walks while her only strikeout came against Cenate in the first inning.
“As the coach I must take responsibility for our first loss of the season. We simply weren’t prepared mentally to play our best, for either game,” Amanda Orkoskey said. “I’m still proud of the team for pulling out the first win. They could have shut down and given up when John Marshall started hitting; but they didn’t, they continued to fight.
“They even kept fighting all the way until the very end of the second game when Kylie hit the home run in bottom of seventh. Unfortunately, it just wasn’t enough of playing our game the way we know how.”
“It’s time to move on, fix a few things, and start that win streak back over. We know there are plenty of people who want us to fail, but we are determined to prove them wrong. I know [the girls] will use this as a learning experience and come back even stronger. As they say, ‘Never let a win get to your head or a loss get to your heart.’ We want to share a special thanks to our amazing field crew and Musselman softball for allowing us to use their field for the games.”