The Manhattan High softball team had its hands full on Tuesday, facing off with an undefeated Shawnee Heights team on the road.
The Indians gave the Thunderbirds a run for their money, but in the end they came up short with 6-5 and 8-7 losses.
Game 1 was tight early on, with MHS pitcher Aubrey Jung allowing just two runs on four hits and three errors in the first four innings of the game. The T-Birds, meanwhile, allowed one run on five hits in that stretch.
Both teams were tied after the first inning, with the Indians starting the game on a triple from Kylie Smith. Cat Bridegam hit a single to drive in Smith. The Indians loaded the bases after that, but went down with back-to-back strikeouts.
Shawnee Heights scored on a two-out double in the first and then used three errors to score a run.
The T-Birds added to their 2-1 lead in the fifth inning with a three-run home run to go ahead 5-1. The Indians came back to score four runs in the sixth inning to tie the game at 5.
Ashley Hageman singled in Jenna Stigge, Jung scored on a passed ball and Hageman scored when Savannah Thaemert was caught in a run-down. Thaemert made it to base safely and was singled in by Kori Bridegam.
With the game still tied at 5 in the bottom of the seventh, Shawnee Heights got a first-pitch home run to end the game.
The Indians were led by Kori Bridegam’s three hits, while Smith, Stigge and Allie Massanet each had two hits. Jung took the loss in the circle with seven hits, three walks and four strikeouts.
MHS started off strong in Game 2, scoring five runs in the first inning with all nine batters coming up to the plate. Kaitlyn Motley opened the scoring by driving in Smith, and then Stigge doubled to score Kori and Cat Bridegam. Hageman singled to bring around Stigge.
Manhattan scored again in the third inning when Massanet singled to score Jung. Massanet had an RBI single in the fifth inning to give the Indians another run.
The Indians 7-0 lead didn’t last though, as Shawnee Heights came back with four runs apiece in the fifth and sixth. The T-Birds hit a grand slam in the fifth inning to make the score 7-4. After an RBI single cut the score to two runs in the sixth inning, Shawnee Heights smacked a three-run home run to go ahead 8-7 and held on for the win.
The T-Birds had the big bats going all day on Tuesday, scoring 11 of their 14 runs on home runs.
Hageman took the loss, allowing Shawnee Heights to pick up 11 hits. She was charged with four earned runs, while striking out four.
Motley, Massanet, Stigge and Hageman each had two hits and Massanet and Stigge each had two RBIs.
The Indians will return home on Friday to play a doubleheader with Topeka West at home.