"Right now we're young and we're learning to get better," Purdy coach Stephanie Ray said. "We're getting ahead early, but we're just not finishing the game."
Leading 4-1 entering the fourth inning, the Lady Eagles (2-3) were in control until the Lady Wildcats came storming back with a one-out rally sparked by Katelyn Pitts. Batting ninth in the order, Pitts, a junior outfielder, doubled off the wall in left center and came around to score on a single by Emily Speakman.
Within a matter of minutes, the tide had completely turned and the Lady Wildcats had the momentum. But the Lady Eagles made things interesting in the fifth. Skylar Lakey drew a one-out walk and Micayla Staponski singled to put the go-ahead run on base, but Cassville reliever Taylor Wolf, who came on in the third inning, struck out the side to end the game.
Wolf earned the victory in the circle in relief of Speakman. She didn't allow a run and struck out five.
There were plenty of positives for the Lady Eagles, though the loss left a bitter taste. They got on the board first when Jayse Henderson led off the game with a walk and came around to score on a wild pitch to make it 1-0. An RBI triple by Abby Parsons in the second made it 2-0. Purdy plated two more on an RBI single from Breanna Keeler and a wild pitch to make it 4-1.
Ray said her young squad will learn from the rough inning.
"We're just talking about getting better every day whether it be the next game we play, the next practice," Ray said. "We're just focused on getting better and we're going to take it one day at a time."
Pitts finished with two hits, including a double and two runs scored to pace the Lady Wildcats. Jamieson had three hits, an RBI, and a run scored. Blisard had two hits and scored a run. Brock, Speakman and Kelsey Baker each had one hit. Speakman and Baker each scored one and drove in a run apiece.
The Lady Eagles had single hits from Carleigh Hall, Mattie White, Keeler, Staponski, Doni Craig and Parsons.
The Lady Eagles will be in action at home on Friday against Wheaton. First pitch is set for 5 p.m.