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Mohawks hold down MHS softball

Marina Rosalez

MASON CITY — Only once this season has three runs been enough, and that was against a Des Moines North squad that is now 0-25 for the summer.

The Marshalltown softball team needed more offense against Mason City in Wednesday’s CIML Iowa Conference doubleheader, but it never came for the Bobcats.

MHS had 17 hits in the twinbill but stranded a total of 15 runners on base by the time Mason City had taken both ends, winning 4-3 and 9-2 to take a 3-1 regular-season series advantage from the Bobcats (6-28, 1-17).

The host Mohawks (15-19, 4-14) compiled 12 hits in both games of the conference doubleheader, highlighted by Anna Lensing’s clutch performance in the opener. In addition to the pitching victory, Lensing went 3-for-4 with a solo home run in the third inning and a go-ahead, RBI single in the bottom of the sixth.

Trailing 4-3 in their last at-bat of the first game, the Bobcats got a leadoff single from Avery Mull, but her courtesy runner Kyra Feldman got no farther as Lensing got the game’s final three outs without allowing the ball to leave the infield.

Marshalltown had led 2-0 after the first half inning, getting a leadoff double from Gabby Himes, a one-out double from Marina Rosalez and a sacrifice fly by Madi Finch. Paige Wertzberger tried to started it up again for the Bobcats with another double, but the inning ended without further incident.

The Mohawks got both runs back in the second and went ahead on Lensing’s homer in the third, but Marshalltown pulled even in the top of the fourth. Autumn Finch reached on a fielder’s choice and scored on a two-out single by Himes. Jadyn Palmer was thrown out trying to advance from first to third on the play, ending the Bobcat outburst.

Mull was the only other Marshalltown batter to reach base the rest of the way. She and the Bobcat defense dodged Mason City’s first attempt to re-take the lead by stranding the bases loaded in the fifth, but Alicia Hoeft and Lensing delivered back-to-back singles to start the sixth to put the Mohawks on top to stay.

Himes finished 3-for-4 with a run and an RBI to lead Marshalltown at the plate. Mull (2-16) didn’t record a strikeout in the loss, though she issued only one walk.

In game two, Mason City scored five times in the bottom of the first against Kailee Pollard (3-12) and pulled away even further with a four-run third in support of McKenna Mentink. Mentink got the win despite walking five and allowing eight hits while striking out one.

The Mohawks’ first eight batters of the game reached base safely, sending 11 to the plate in all before the Bobcats could get out of it. Sami Miller had two hits in the inning alone and finished 3-for-4 with a triple, an RBI and two runs scored to lead the way.

Erica Johnson was 2-for-4 with a pair of singles to lead MHS offensively. Rosalez had an RBI double to drive in Palmer, who reached on an error, in the fifth. Rosalez also walked and scored on a Sophie Younkin single in the seventh.

Pollard allowed nine runs — five earned — on 12 hits and two walks, striking out two in the loss.

The Bobcats close the regular season on the road on Monday, wrapping up CIML Iowa action with a doubleheader at Class 5A No. 1 Waukee. Marshalltown’s regional opener is July 11 at Ames.

At Mason City

Game One

Mason City 4, Marshalltown 3

MHS 200 100 0 — 3 9

MC 021 001 X — 4 12

Avery Mull and Emma McWherter; Anna Lensing and Lainna Duncan. W–Lensing (2-6). L–Mull (2-16). 2B–MHS: Marina Rosalez, Paige Wertzberger; MC: Kayla Seidel. HR–MC: Lensing (2). LOB–MHS 5, MC 11.

Game Two

Mason City 9, Marshalltown 2

MHS 000 010 1 — 2 8 4

MC 500 400 X — 9 12 1

Kailee Pollard and McWherter; McKenna Mentink and Duncan. W–Mentink (11-13). L–Pollard (3-12). 2B–MHS: Rosalez. 3B–MC: Sami Miller. LOB–MHS 10, MC 7.