Not only did the Cougars win, but they won in resounding fashion, cruising to a pair of five-inning, 10-run mercy-rule victories. The SSHS crew downed northern California schools Sutter, 11-1, and Casa Roble, 12-2.
In the first game, Ally Batastini was stellar in the circle, picking up a shortened complete-game victory. She struck out five and walked one without giving up an earned run.
Autumn Alexander and Myrissa Prince both doubled and scored to highlight the Cougars' 10-hit attack. Alexander, Alyx Penrod, Kelsey Stroshine and Brette Lawrence all laced a pair of hits in the romp.
In the Cougars' second contest of the day, it was more of the same. Lawrence provided the standout pitching effort that time around, also turning in a shortened complete-game victory. She struck out four and walked two while scattering eight Casa Roble hits.
After earning pitching accolades in the first game, Batastini got some for her work at the plate in the second tourney tilt. She bashed a three-run dinger in the lopsided triumph. Prince added an RBI triple in the SSHS crew's 11-hit production.
Batastini, Lawrence, Prince and Kayla Arterburn all chipped in a pair of hits in the second contest.
"Earlier in the tournament, on Thursday and Friday, although we went 2-1, we didn't play real well," Spanish Springs coach Jeff Davidson said. "We left a lot of runners on base. Today, the team came out and played extremely well. I thought we played well in all aspects of the game."
--Also competing in the tournament was the Rail City's other large high school, Reed High. The RHS club split its two tournament games Saturday, falling to Casa Roble, 8-3, before knocking off Sutter, 3-1.
Reed's defense was its Achilles' heel in the loss to Casa Roble. The Raiders out-hit the Rams 8-5, but committed six errors and gave up six unearned runs, virtually gift-wrapping the win for the Orangevale, Calif. school.
Reed trailed 5-1 after three innings but chipped away, trimming the Casa Roble lead to 5-3 after five frames. Unfortunately for the Raiders, Casa Roble tacked on a trio of unearned runs in the sixth to score some insurance.
The Raiders were sharper in their second game. Megan Dettling earned a six-inning complete-game win. She did walk five, but struck out five and gave up only three hits.
Reed trailed 1-0 after four innings before it pulled into a 1-1 deadlock in the fifth. Cassy Walsh singled, stole second and scored on a Lindsay Yearman single.
Reed got its go-ahead runs in the sixth. Leighton Lee came off the bench for Reed to pinch hit and roped a two-run double for the game-winning knock. It was just her second at bat of the three-day season-opening tournament.
Reed (2-1-2) returns to action Tuesday when it hosts Carson at 3:45 p.m.
"No one likes those ties but it's better than losing," Raiders coach Jon Wunder said. "We were able to get everybody pretty significant playing time. I was hoping to maybe be able to firm up a starting lineup, to see the cream rise to the crop. It did in a couple areas but we're still making way too many mistakes defensively ... We've got a lot of work to do but we want to peak at the right time."
--At Lovelock, the Sparks softball squad also got in a pair of early-season non-league contests, dropping Carlin 15-4 before falling to Pershing County, 10-3.
In the win over Carlin, Sparks got a six-inning complete game pitching victory from Madisyn Locke. The Railroaders also got an inside-the-park two-run homer from Sarah Hanson in the fourth frame.
The Game 2 loss was close through five innings. The SHS crew trailed by just two runs, 5-3, but watched Pershing County rip off five runs in the final two innings to extend its edge and account for a seven-run triumph.
"There are positives. We made four and three errors in the two games, which is way down from last year," Sparks coach Frank Avilla said. "We had 22 hits in the two games. Madisyn pitched a great game for us in the opener. She came through with flying colors.
"In that second game we were down 5-3 after five innings but I promised the kids I'd play everybody and I wanted to get a chance to look at all the kids."
Sparks returns to the practice fields for much of the next week before playing its next game, Friday at Fernley at 4 p.m..