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Screaming Eagles take 4th in Western Nationals

By: Mike Ray
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MEDFORD, Oregon – Moved up a division because of roster additions, the Five Cities Screaming Eagles girls 14-Under fastpitch softball team from Loomis didn’t flinch one bit in coming up with a second straight fourth-place finish in the ASA Western A Nationals played last week in this southern Oregon.

Fourth-place finishers a year ago in the Western B Nationals held in Roseville, the Eagles were moved up to the A division late in the qualifying season when the team added a player after injuries hit the squad’s pitching staff.

However, judging by the team’s play last week, the Eagles more than held their own against the top A teams from Oregon, Washington, California, Nevada and Colorado.

After winning their first four games, the Eagles dropped a winner’s bracket semifinal game to the Northwest Vandals from Salem, Oregon, 5-1. The Vandals then went on to defeat the Colorado Angels to win the tournament.

After their initial loss, the Eagles bounced back with a 9-5 win over the Lady Hustle from Pleasanton. The Eagles were then eliminated in an 11-3 setback to the NorCal Legends from San Jose.

The Eagles finished their season with an outstanding record of 49-11-3.

In the elimination loss to the Legends, the Eagles were locked in a tight 3-2 game with the San Jose team before a six-run explosion by the Bay Area squad proved too much to overcome. In the loss, Jessie Jensen and Kendra Cannon both doubled.

Earlier, the Eagles stayed alive with their 9-5 decision over the Lady Hustle. Tied at five through three innings, the Eagles broke the contest open with a four-run fourth inning.

An RBI sacrifice fly from Sara Swenson, an RBI double by Jensen and an RBI single by Lauren Siebe sparked the rally. Cannon, Jensen, Siebe and Kylie Lunders all paired hits for the winners. Jensen finished the game with three RBI. Stella Chavez notched the pitching win.

In the setback to the Vandals, Five Cities, which trailed 2-1 after 4 1/2 innings, had no answer after the Vandals used a pivotal two-run triple in the bottom of the fifth from Jade Beamon to carve out a three-run frame that proved too much for the Eagles to overcome.

The Eagles were led offensively in the game by Annabelle Burke who was 2 for 4 and Cannon and Jensen, who each doubled. Dee Morillas added an RBI single for Five Cities, which left 10 runners on base.