Rifle’s Young mows down Steamboat | PostIndependent.com

Rifle’s Young mows down Steamboat

Jeff Caspersen
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Chad Spangler Post Independent

RIFLE, Colorado ” Maintaining focus and intensity in the midst of a rout can be challenging.

But it’s a whole lot easier when you’re the team doing the routing.

Behind a no-hitter in the opener and a perfect game in the second game ” both pitched by Shawnee Young ” Rifle rolled to 23-0 and 22-0 softball wins over visiting Steamboat Springs on Saturday.

Each game lasted just three innings.

“I’m very proud of the girls,” Rifle coach Cindy Skinner said. “The discipline it takes to play a game like that is difficult. It’s tough for them to stay off the bad pitches and stay up for the game.”

Rifle put each game away early, rattling off 14 runs in the first inning of the opener before plating nine more in the second inning.

In that first game, Alisha Rodebaugh smacked a grand slam and drove in five runs, while Dannan Dueitt, Makayla Wilkins, Ciara Euler and Kacey Caren all had two hits.

Young struck out six of the 10 batters she faced before the game ended prematurely by way of the mercy rule.

In the second game, Rifle scored six in the first, eight in the second and eight more in the third to cruise to the sweep and improve to 10-4 overall and to 4-0 in the 4A Western Slope League.

The Bears plated 12 runs on wild pitches or passed balls in addition to RBIs by Shelby Burns, Cortney Cordova, Kelsey Pyle, Samantha Young, Caren, Dueitt and Rodebaugh. Burns and Pyle finished with two hits apiece.

Shawnee Young whiffed six five of the nine batters she faced en route to her perfect game.

The Sailors, fielding a team of just nine players, stayed positive in the face of their struggles, fervently cheering each other on despite the lopsided scores.

“Half of these girls had never seen a softball until this year,” Steamboat coach Dan Swanson said. “They’re a very positive team. They shake it off and move on to the next thing. They don’t get down on themselves or each other.”

Rifle, on the other hand, is a team jelling nicely after starting the season with only a handful of varsity-seasoned players.

“We’re learning to work with each other,” the Bears’ Kelsey Pyle said. “It’s been really fun. We have a lot of talent, so it was easy as far as that went.”

Next up for Rifle is a Tuesday trip to Eagle Valley. Steamboat (0-10 overall, 0-6 in the 4A WSL) heads to Middle Park for a doubleheader on Wednesday.

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