Explosive fifth inning propels Raider softball team to win

Down six runs in the top of the second inning against Choctaw Tuesday night, it wasn’t looking good for Navarre’s softball team.

Head coach Kelly Hayes never stopped believing. Her team didn’t either.

“The one thing about our team is they always come back no matter what,” Hayes said. “They might not always win, but they find a way and give it all they got. They have heart.”

A game that seemed lost soon turned into one to remember. The Raiders chipped away at their deficit slowly climbed back into the game before stealing the momentum in furious fashion with an explosive 10-run fifth inning that catapulted Navarre to a 17-7 victory at home.

The game was called in the fifth, and that’s probably a good thing. The Raiders could have kept pounding away at the plate as they had no outs when the run rule went into effect.

“I couldn’t have asked for anything better,” Hayes said. “We finished the inning with 0 outs. We could have kept going on.”

Trailing 7-5 entering the fifth inning, the Raiders flipped a switch offensively that the Indians couldn’t shut off.

Holly Koch, who led off the inning with a hit, scored on a hit by Emma Thomas to trim the deficit to 7-6. Nathalie Holbrook then delivered a clutch hit to drive in the tying run.

Holbrook went on to score off a wild pitch when the ball soared over the head of the catcher. That run put the Raiders in front for good at 8-7.

Read the full article in the March 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per year.

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