Basalt softball drops two |

Basalt softball drops two

Basalt’s softball team lost both games of a Saturday doubleheader at Gunnison to open 3A Western Slope play.”We took two on the chin,” reported Basalt coach Bruce Matherly in an e-mail. “Missed relays, overthrown bases and general sloppy play kept us out of both games.”The Longhorns were befuddled by the same Gunnison pitcher in both games, losing 7-2 in the morning and 13-8 in the afternoon.While the Longhorns struggled at the plate in the first game, the Cowboys had no trouble connecting on pitches from Basalt sophomore starter Alex Aitken, outhitting Basalt, 16-3.Trailing 2-1 in the top of the third, Aitken helped herself at the plate, reaching first on a fielder’s choice before stealing third and second. She then scored on a passed ball.Aitken had four strikeouts in the complete game loss. Basalt freshman catcher Kenzie Kuhn shined behind the plate, throwing out three Cowboys on attempted steals.In the afternoon, Basalt got more production from its offense, but still was unable to keep pace with the Cowboys, who cranked out 19 hits to Basalt’s 11.”The bats came alive, but just a little too late,” Matherly reported. “The girls never gave up and scored six runs in the last three innings to make the game close.”Aitken again pitched the entire seven innings, recording six strikeouts.The offensive highlight of the day was an inside-the-park home run from freshman center fielder Morgan Armbruster, who finished 3-for-4.Basalt was slated to host a doubleheader against Norwood on Saturday, but Norwood’s program recently folded. Matherly said the Longhorns are exploring the possibility of playing the junior varsity from either 4A Eagle Valley or 4A Rifle.Another sweep for Longhorns spikersA day after sweeping rival Aspen, Basalt’s varsity spikers did the same to 3A Western Slope foe Cedaredge on Saturday to keep their perfect season intact, improving to 9-0.Basalt won 25-15, 25-13, 25-13 to earn its fifth sweep overall and third in a row. The Longhorns have not allowed more than 15 points in six straight games and have not lost a single game since falling, 25-19, in the first game of a 2-1 match win against Machebeuf on Sept. 8. The defending 3A Western Slope champs will get a challenge Friday when they host 2006 league runner-up Gunnison at 6 p.m.

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