INDEPENDENCE, Kan. - Stepping outside of conference play, the Independence Lady Pirates hosted the rival Coffeyville Red Ravens in what would be an epically competitive doubleheader in a split with the first decision going to Coffeyville 4-2 and the second affair in favor of the Lady Pirates 6-5.
"We took a couple days off and it definitely showed in the first game, but hopefully we got the cobwebs and we'll get back to it tomorrow" coach Sam Allen said. "We started to piece things together toward the end of the first game and it definitely carried over to game two with all of the intensity we brought to pick up the win especially with the huge two-run homer by Kayla Broncho creating a spark late in the game."
"Our next opponent is Butler and we'll have to come out and play the ball well on both sides against them.
In game one, the Red Ravens scored first in the top of the third after three consecutive singles off pitcher Jennifer Dunagan, but the Lady Pirates would answer back in the bottom frame to tie it up as a double by Brianna Hollis brought in Theresa Johnson.
The game would remain tied until the top of the fifth when Coffeyville hit a home run to left centerfield and Dunagan would give way in the circle to Kourtnee Ledbetter after four innings. Ledbetter would eventually get Independence out of the inning, but Coffeyville scored another run from third after a flyout to centerfield.
After a scoreless bottom of the fifth, Coffeyville scored another run to push the score to 4-1. Independence threatened with one run in the bottom of the sixth, but that was it as the Red Ravens took the opening contest.
Game two began rather similarly as Coffeyville started with a 2-0 lead after the first inning. Pitcher Elizabeth Mensink calmly adjusted holding off the Red Ravens attack and after several hits got through the infield, the Lady Pirates took a 3-2 advantage after the third inning.
Coffeyville would tie it up momentarily, but in the bottom of the fifth Kayla Broncho blasted a two-run homer to right centerfield for a 5-3 lead that sparked the crowd into a frenzy through the remainder of the inning.
The Lady Pirates couldn't seem to catch a break the following inning as the Red Ravens hit a two-run homer of their own to bring the game to a 5-5 tie chasing Mensink from the game and entering Gabby Horton into the circle.
Horton got the Lady Pirates out of trouble and the lead would once again be with Independence taking the lead in the bottom of the sixth as Broncho doubled to bring in Cassi Smith for the go ahead run. Coffeyville would have no answer in the seventh as the Lady Pirates closed out the game in victory claiming a split on the day.
Independence (8-7, 4-2) returns to action Wednesday March 27 hosting the #18 Butler Grizzlies beginning at 2 pm.