Seven errors against the top ranked Strasburg Lady Tigers would cost the River Pilots a chance to play in Division IV championship, losing 6-1 in the semifinals May 15 at Tuscarawas High School.
"That's the fastest team we've ever faced," River Head Coach Dave Wright said. "Their speed made us hurry things and caused us to do things we normally don't do. We weren't intimidated, but we tried to hurry too much.''
The Pilots fell behind early, thanks to the Tigers' speed and aggressiveness on the base paths. The Lady Tigers scored their first run off a delayed steal in the first frame.
Strasburg took advantage of two hits and three Pilot errors en route to building the lead to 4-0 in the bottom of the third.
"Anytime you play a team of that caliber and you give them more than three outs in an inning, you're in trouble. . . and we were in trouble," added Wright.
The Lady Tigers only had two hits to the outfield all afternoon. Strasburg made it 6-0 in the fourth, which chased Pilot starter Renae Riley from the circle. Sophomore Gabby Goudy came on in relief and slammed the door on the Tigers, not allowing a hit and striking out five.
River broke up the shutout in the sixth frame. Pilot freshman Hayley Bowers lined a shot back through the middle to score Goudy for the Pilots' lone tally.
The run batted in by Bowers' was her 62nd of the season, which ties her for sixth all-time in in the OHSAA record book for a single season.
Along with Bowers' RBI single, freshman Mackenzie Marshall added a ground-rule double and a single while Stephanie Murdock also singled.
"This was a pretty good season for us," added Wright. "We had a good mixture of young and old (players). We're certainly going to miss our six seniors: Renae Riley, Brianna Cook, Anna Rufener, Lindsey Goddard, Mallory Lancaster, and Stephanie Murdock.
The Lady Pilots won their first co-sectional crown in 11 seasons and finished the season with an outstanding 20-10 record.