For six innings, the frustration of not putting the ball in play in key moments swelled as the Monett Lady Cubs softball team (20-5) entered their last at-bat in the seventh inning trailing 4-1 to the Reeds Spring Wolves.
The Lady Cubs rallied with a trio of runs in the seventh. Then added the go-ahead run in the eighth and held on to win 5-4.
The Lady Wolves jumped out to a 3-0 lead. Scoring a run in the third and two runs in the fourth innings.
Monett stranded 10 base runners in the first five innings including leaving the bases loaded in the fifth after scoring a run.
Reeds Spring scored in the bottom of the fifth to establish the three-run cushion and Monett was stopped in the sixth inning to set up the late-game heroics.
Monett struck quickly when Raigan Ratliff opened the seventh with a double and Kelsey Wisman homered to left field to trim the margin to 4-3.
Abby Krueger and Andrea Soriano singled to extend the inning, and a walk issued to Brooke Madison loaded the bases. Brooke Burnside lifted a fly ball to center field that allowed Abby Krueger to tag and come home to knot the score at 4-4.
The Lady Cubs used the pitcher's best friend, the double play, in the bottom seventh inning to get out of a jam.
With runners on first and second base and one out, the Lady Wolves batter hit a line drive to left field that looked like it could drop for a hit. Monett's Jessica Harper closed the gap, caught the ball and fired to second base for the seven-to-four double play.
The Lady Cubs carried the momentum into the top of the eighth inning. With one out, Ratliff and Wisemen singled.
Abby Kruger, the next hitter, bunted up the first base line in an attempt to move the runners over. A throw to third base to get the lead runner was bobbled and Ratliff attempted to go home and was thrown out. However, the home plate umpire signaled interference on the Lady Wolves' third baseman for obstructing the base path. Ratliff was awarded home, and Monett took a 5-4 lead.
Ratlliff retired the Lady Wolves in the bottom of the eighth to preserve the 5-4 victory.
Wiseman, Abby Krueger and Burnside finished the game with two hits and two RBIs each. Ratliff collected three hits in five tries. Josee Krueger, Soriano, Madison and Harper added a hit apiece.
Allie Krueger started the game for Monett. She pitched six innings, allowed seven hits, four earned runs and struck out seven. Ratliff pitched two innings in relief and earned the victory. She allowed one hit and struck out one.
Monett opens district play at North Park tonight against the winner of the Aurora-Cassville game.. First pitch is set for 5 p.m.