Broncbusters split with Dawson

GCCC Sports Information Services
Garden City Community College's Lexi Maestretti celebrates as she round the bases Tuesday after hitting a grand slam home run in the bottom of the seventh to give GCCC a 7-4 win over Dawson in the second game of a doubleheader at Tangeman Sports Complex.

Maestretti hits grand slam for win in nightcap

Lacey Kearsley never found her groove in the circle.  

Shelby Martin and Maycen O'Neal each homered, Martin tossed a five-hit masterpiece, and Dawson run-ruled Garden City Community College 12-1 in five innings Tuesday afternoon at Tangeman Sports Complex.

The Buccaneers, fresh off a 15-hour bus ride from Montana, went right to work in the first. With two outs, O'Neal singled home a run, and Martin clubbed a two-run blast to make it 3-0. After the Broncbusters got a run back in the bottom half on McKenzie Moore's RBI single to center, Dawson extended their lead in the top of the second -tagging Kearsley for four runs including a bases-loaded walk that put the Buccaneers up 7-1. Ashlynne Copinga added a run-scoring double in the third, O'Neal went yard in the fourth, and Coping and Riley Arnold clubbed RBI knocks to make it 12-1.

Meantime the Broncbuster offense, stuck in mud for most of the afternoon, was limited to just five hits. After collecting three knocks in the first, they managed just two the rest of the way: an Alexis Maestreetti single in the third, and Elycia Johnson's bloop to right in the fourth.

Kearsley dropped to 2-6 in the circle, surrendering 10 earned runs on 12 hits in five innings. She struck out five and walked five.

Fallyn Marshall finished 3-for-4 with four runs scored and an RBI for Dawson, who improved to 6-1 overall.

Game 2

Lexi Maestrett hit just four home runs during her high school career. Well, in her first 16 games in college, she's already equaled that. And while that's an impressive feat, it pales in comparison to her mammoth shot in the seventh inning on a Tuesday, a blast that sent Dawson home with a split instead of a series sweep.

Maestreti collected Garden City's only two hits which included a walk-off grand slam that gave the Broncbusters a dramatic 7-4 come-from-behind victory over the Buccaneers in game two at Tangeman Sports Complex.

Incredibly, Maestretti was the Broncbusters offense, literally. Her single to lead off the third and her grand slam in the seventh is all that Alexa Kappel and Shelby Martin allowed. Yet, somehow, Dawson trailed most of the game.

In the bottom of the first, Garden City took advantage of a walk, two hit batsmen and a wild pitch to score their first run. An inning later, it was another free pass and an error when Fallyn Marshall dropped a routine fly ball in center allowing Elycia Johnson to score from third. Then in the third, Maestretti singled, Tara Reid walked, and Johnson laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt to make it 3-0.

But as has been the case all season, Garden City didn't make it easy on themselves.

In the Dawson sixth, Reid appeared to work out of trouble after surrendering a double and a walk to begin the inning. With runners in scoring position, she got Shelby Martin to line out before fanning Deven Creech. But with two outs, Reid served up a two-run single to Angel Montoya that sliced the Broncbuster lead to 3-2. She eventually got out of that mess by striking out Shenandoah Jackson. She wasn't so fortunate in the seventh.

Reid gave up a double to Alexa Kappel to begin the frame and a fielder's choice that put two on with nobody out. Two batters later, Riley Arnold's RBI groundout tied the game before Lacey Kearsley committed an error at first that allowed the go-ahead run to score.

But the Broncbusters were given a reprieve in the bottom half, thanks to Maestretti. After Erykah Foster walked, McKayla Encinias was hit by a pitch, and McKenzie Moore reached on a push bunt to load the bases. After Carly Powley flied out to center, it was Maestretti, hammering a 2-1 fastball from Martin over the fence in center for the game winner.

The freshman finished 2-for-3 at the plate with four RBI and two runs while the rest of her team combined to go 0-for-19. Reid was steady in the circle, allowing three earned runs on seven hits in seven innings. She tied a season-high with eight strikeouts.

Garden City will host Northwest Technical beginning at 2 p.m. on Thursday for a doubleheader.