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Thursday, June 20, 2024

Tigers drop non-league road softball game at Clatskanie

PHOTOS BY CLAIRA TOLANTaft Tigers softball team

The Taft High softball team, riddled by illness, injuries and travel, lost for the first time in Oregon this season Thursday in a battle of top-five ranked Class 3A teams, 8-4 at Claskanie.

“After the three-hour plus bus ride, we came out pretty flat,” Lady Tigers Coach Sandy Stuart said. “We had some girls suffering from illness, both caused by the ride and just bugs. We just couldn’t get the momentum needed early on.”

Clatskanie, also nicknamed the Tigers, improved to 16-2, in the non-league game behind the combined pitching efforts of freshmen Shelby Blodgett and Katy Sizemore. Starter Blodgett struck out eight and scattered six hits over five innings, while Sizemore silenced Taft over the final two stanzas.

Taft sophomore starter Emma Coulter, who has fought a fever all week, took a line drive off the hip in the first inning before going the distance and walking five against three strikeouts.

Emma Coulter
Emma Coulter

The Tigers also played without starting freshman shortstop Claira Tolan, one of the squad’s leading hitters, who sprained an ankle while sliding into a base Tuesday at Sheridan.

“It definitely hurt not having Claira’s bat in the lineup today, but we did collect more hits than they did,” Stuart said. “A couple of moments could have changed that whole game.”

Alyssa Tanksley
Alyssa Tanksley

Seniors McKenzie Evenson and Alyssa Tanksley, freshman Makena Cole and Coulter had two hits each for Taft, while Coulter drove home two runs. Evenson and Cole had Taft’s other RBIs.

Catcher Hailee Danneker gives a thumbs up

Senior Naomi Rini, junior Lilly Salsbery sophomore Hailee Danneker and Cole scored for the Tigers.

Naomi Rini
Naomi Rini

“I feel like we need to just learn from our mistakes and build on this,” Stuart said. “This doesn’t change any of our goals, and we know what we need to work on to move forward.”

The loss snapped a six-game winning streak for the Tigers (12-7, 4-0 Class 3A West Valley League), who started the season 6-0 before dropping five straight games to bigger schools in a spring break tournament in California.

Taft returns to the diamond Saturday at home for a noon doubleheader against Colton (6-6, 3-1 3A PacWest). The Tigers resume league play at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday at Amity.

Clatskanie 8, Taft 4

TAFT                 AB  R  H BI  
Kyla  Knott           4  0  0  0
Naomi  Rini           3  1  1  0
Hailee  Danneker      4  1  1  0
Emma Coulter          3  0  2  2
Makena Cole           4  1  2  1
Alyssa  Tanksley      4  0  2  0
McKenzie Evenson      2  0  2  1
Corey VanDamme        3  0  0  0
Madison  Clanton      2  0  0  0
*Lilly Salsbery       0  1  0  0
TOTALS               29  4 10  4 

CLATSKANIE           AB  R  H BI
O Spague              3  2  1  2
A Smith               4  2  2  0
O Warren              2  1  1  0
S Blodgett            2  1  1  2
T Hamm                3  0  1  4
J Maris               4  0  1  0
J Makinson            3  0  0  0
K Sizemore            1  1  0  0
K Aersmus             3  1  0  0
TOTALS               25  8  7  8

TAFT TIGERS                   000 220 0 — 4
CLATSKANIE                    002 501 x — 8

LOB–TAFT 8, CLATSKANIE 8. ERR–Kayla Lininger, S Hummer, K Aersmus. 2B–Makena Cole, Alyssa  Tanksley, A Smith, S Blodgett, T Hamm. 3B–O Spague. HBP—McKenzie Evenson, S Blodgett (2), O Warren. SACF–Emma Coulter, T Hamm. SB–O Warren.

TAFT                            IP    H    R   ER   BB   SO   HR
Emma Coulter                   6.00    7    8    8    5    3    0
S Blodgett                     5.00    6    4    2    1    8    0
K Sizemore                     2.00    4    0    0    1    0    0
PB–T Hamm. BB–Naomi  Rini, Madison  Clanton, O Spague, O Warren, J Makinson, K Sizemore (2).

Taft roster/schedule

Class 3A West Valley League standings

Class 3A OSAA rankings

Jim Fossum
Jim Fossumhttp://SilverandBlackToday.com
Homepage Executive Editor and former longtime Sports Editor of the near-200,000 circulation Las Vegas Review-Journal, Fossum brings 40 years of award-winning experience covering virtually every facet of print and digital journalism to Lincoln City Homepage. The former longtime reporter for the Newport News-Times and Lincoln City News Guard is also Editor-in-Chief and Senior Columnist for SilverandBlackToday.com, which covers the NFL's Oakland (Las Vegas) Raiders.


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