By Chuck Reherman
WASHINGTON – Yukon head coach Katy Hoke wanted to give her team a strong test before opening regionals.
The Millerettes got one in small school power Washington.
The Lady Warriors used a walk-off double in the bottom of the seventh inning to upend the Millerettes, 1-0 Monday night in Washington.
The contest as a pitcher’s dual. Kaylee Bradley held Washington to one hit until the seventh inning and the Millerettes had only four hits.
“We played really well,” Hoke said. “We played really good defense, great defense and they had a really good pitcher that throws a very effective off-speed curve. We did struggle with the outside pitch.
“We had runners on base multiple times but couldn’t get any of them across the plate,” she said. “We had the bases loaded in the six inning with one out and we struck out to end the inning.
“The reason why we went was that we knew it would be a good test even though they are a smaller school. We knew we would see good pitching and we wanted them to have to play good defense and out pitcher to throw. Some of our district games have not been challenged us and when it comes to a challenge we have not been fully prepared. I want us getting ready for regionals preparing and playing good teams. They have a very good program.”
Washington, 32-4, scored the game winner in the bottom of the seventh after a lead-off double and then the one-out walk-off double to drive in the only run of the game.
The Millerettes did have a chance to take the lead in the sixth inning, loading the bases with two outs. YHS also had a runner on second in the fifth inning (a double by Kaylee Witte).
“We had Kaylee at third after her double, but we had a hard hit ball to third that she couldn’t advance on,” Hoke said. “The we hit a deep fly ball that their outfielder made a good catch on. It was things like that all night.”
The Millerettes played in the Chickasha Festival on Fiday and Saturday and finished 3-1, closing the second day with a 9-4 win over Blanchard.
YHS had lost to Newcastle 4-3 earlier in the day after beating Cache 10-0 and Ponca City 8-0 on the first day.
“We played three good games and one rough game,” Hoke said. “That Newcastle game was blah from the get go. It’s started over 30 minutes late, we started flat and there was a whole lot of excitement to play the game for whatever reason.
“We still struggled with getting out bunts down and moving our runners,” she said. “We did not move our runners when it came down to it against Newcastle. We chewed a little tail and lit a fire in the Blanchard game and it was more fun. we played good defense and hit the ball better in that game.”
In the final game, the Millerettes scored their runs in bunches in posting the 9-4 win.
YHS took control of the game in the fourth inning, pushing five runs across the plate to open a 9-3 lead.
A.J. Rayburn’s three-run home run, her 14th of the season, gave the Millerettes a 7-3 lead. Taryn Blazevich and Taylor McMahon had both singled before Rayburn’s blast. Ariah Mitchell’s two-out double plated the final two runs for the Millerettes.
Yukon jumped out to a 4-0 first inning lead on Gigi Vandelune’s two-RBI double and Witte’s RBI single keyed the opening rally.
Against Newcastle, the Lady Racers scored the game winner in the top of the fifth inning, then held off a late rally by the Millerettes to win 4-3.
YHS had the tying run on base after Blazevich and Rayburn singles. Vandelune’s ground out drove in the run, but a ground out ended the game.
Yukon tied the game 2-2 in the third inning on an RBI triple by Rayburn and McKenna Johnson’s sacrifice fly drove in the tying run.
In the win over Cache, McKee hurled a one-hitter and Rayburn drove in four runs in the 10-0 rout.
Rayburn doubled home a run in the third and a three-run home run in the fifth opened the 10-0 lead.
YHS scored runs in bunches in beating Ponca City 8-0.