While Blue Springs South softball coach Kristi Williams wished for some crisper play at times from her team, she certainly appreciated how her team bounced back Wednesday.
After Platte County scored twice in the top of the fourth to tie the game at 2, the Jaguars answered their own pair in the bottom half en route to a time-shortened 5-2 win to capture third place in the Gold Division of the Greater Kansas City Suburban Tournament at Adair Park.
“We decided to turn it on,” said Williams, whose team finished the season-opening tournament with a 4-1 record. “Josie (White) came up with the two RBIs there to put us ahead, and there on out we played solid defense.”
With one out in the pivotal inning, South’s Skyler Robinson slugged a double to left field. Makenzie Musgrove followed with a single to left, taking second when Platte County (3-2) lacked urgency to get the ball back in. White then dropped a two-run single into shallow right to give the Jaguars the lead for good.
In the fifth Chelsey Tipton led off with a triple past the diving center fielder, capping a 3-for-3 day for the senior first baseman. Tipton then scored on an errant pickoff throw for the final run. The Jags threatened to add on, getting two more hits to give them 12 off Platte County starter Mallory Stoner, before White struck out.
It was still plenty of cushion for South pitcher Erin Griesbauer, who retired seven of the Pirates’ last eight hitters with ground balls.
Tipton drove in the Jaguars’ first two runs as she slugged a first-inning double to center, plating Julia Woelbel, and singled in Hannah Tolliver with two outs in the third.
Tipton said Wednesday was her best game in the tournament in terms of seeing the ball at the plate.
“We got to see some quality pitching, and it was good to get some hits,” she said. “We didn’t lay down; we worked as a team and came back to win.”
Platte County got singles from Stoner and Lexie Hanson and put runners at second and third to start the fourth. A one-out bunt with a late throw home netted one run, and Mariah Bierman speared a hot shot to third, turning a would-be two-run hit into an RBI groundout.
The Pirates only other threat came in the second, but Griesbauer got a strikeout to strand a pair that reached on errors. In the third, Tolliver made a neat snag on a line shot to center with a runner on.
“We let extra runners on base,” Williams said. “They scored a couple runs, and that’s what always happens when you allow extra runners.”
Williams also admitted fault in a first-inning blunder. After Tipton’s RBI double, Bierman hit a routine fly ball to center and Tipton ran around third, her and the coach both thinking there were two outs. Consequently, Tipton was doubled off second base.
Williams said the mix-up in her head came when Griesbauer tried to steal second after a leadoff single, the throw beat her and the shortstop collided with her while making the tag and took a couple minutes to get back on her feet.
“I was hoping it didn’t come down to one run,” the coach said. “It was good for us to overcome some mistakes.”
Defending state champion Lee’s Summit, which beat South in the semifinals, beat Liberty 7-1 in the Gold Division championship game.
WILLIAM CHRISMAN 6, ODESSA 2: Adrianna Solary scattered six hits in the circle and singled and doubled and Sydney Croucher singled three times as Chrisman defeated Odessa in the third-place game in the Bronze Bracket.
“We played well overall in the tournament and were competitive with all of the teams,” Chrisman coach Lindsey Ramsey said. “We are ready to go strong into the first (Suburban Middle Seven) conference game against Raytown Tuesday.
Chrisman’s 2-3 tournament showing was its best in several years.
OAK PARK 3, TRUMAN 2: Oak Park made an early 3-0 lead stand up for the fifth-place Bronze Division victory.
Shay Tolbert singled twice for Truman (2-3). Victoria Morrow was the losing pitcher.
“We had a lot of walks, errors and a couple of hit batters that were crucial,” Truman coach Mandee Berg said. “Maddie Vanderlinden came in to pitch and did a nice job.”
GRAIN VALLEY 7, HARRISONVILLE 3: Kendyll Bailey and Lena Sanders each slugged home runs to spark Grain Valley past Harrisonville in the Silver Bracket fifth-place game.
Shelby Sack earned the victory. Micheia Gutierrez and Haley Folkers each added doubles off the fence.
KEARNEY 5, OAK GROVE 0: Kearney held Oak Grove hitless in the seventh-place Gold Division game. Kaitlyn Marsh took the loss for the Panthers.
“We gave them too many walks, and if you don’t hit or score runs you can’t win,” said Oak Grove coach Terry Parker, whose team went 1-4 in the tournament. “But I thought we played better.”
LEE’S SUMMIT NORTH 10, BELTON 3: The easy victory gave North the Silver Bracket title and a 4-1 tournament showing.
PLEASANT HILL 7, FORT OSAGE 4: An early 6-0 deficit proved too much for Fort Osage to overcome in the seventh-place game in the Silver Division.
Lauren Schletzbaum, Stormie Smallwood and Paige James each had two hits and one RBI for the Indians (1-4). Kaitlin Mickey suffered the loss.