Softball is a fast-paced game; leads can exchange hands after one good inning, despite being down five runs. If a team gets hot, or if one team gets cold, the opponent can easily roll off six runs in one-half inning. Teams have to play a full seven innings if they want to ensure themselves a victory. Taking off one inning could result in a win or loss. That is exactly what happened to the Plainswomen, first being the ones to take advantage of a hot streak, and then being the recipients of one.
With the McCook Indians in town for a Region IX conference game, the Plainswomen know that protecting their home field at all costs is necessary. Dropping a home game only means that when played at their opponents place, they have to get one back, which is doable but not easy. The girls were gearing up for a game, chalk was laid, pitchers warm, and the umpires yell, "Play ball."
The first game would start with both teams trying to time each other's pitchers up while defenses caught fly balls and fielded grounders for outs. In the second, McCook would break the ice as they would score two runs. The Plainswomen could not seem to get in the batting rhythm by chasing pitches outside and popping out to the outfield. In the fourth, the Indians would add one more run to extend their lead 3-0 over NJC. The fifth inning would go scoreless for both teams, but in the final two innings, the Plainswomen found their stride. In the bottom of the sixth, NJC would score two runs and now only trail the Indians 3-2. In the top of seven, NJC would do their job defensively, and in their final at bat, one of the Swat Sisters, Gracie Cordova get the walk off home run to get the win 5-3.
With emotions high after a Swat Sister Smack, the Plainswomen were eager to the second game rolling. They wanted to keep that momentum rolling into the second game before it ran out. But the Indians would bring Northeastern down to earth when they would start the game off with two runs. Not wanting them to take all their swagger, the Plainswomen would come right back with a run to make it a 2-1 game. The next inning would spell trouble for NJC however. Just like in the first game with one inning helping a team take control, McCook would get rolling and put up seven runs on the Plainswomen to take a heavy lead 9-1. Northeastern wouldn't have an answer for those runs in their at bat. Just as easily as one team can get runs going, another team can take the reins and do it themselves. In the bottom of three, the NJS would bat through the order and put up a crooked number by adding nine runs to take the lead 10-9. But when they thought the reins could be passed anymore, the Indians would take them again in the final inning and score five more to take the 14-10 lead. The Plainswomen would have their fate in their hands, in the form of a bat. They did it the game before with a walk off home run, so they knew they were capable of doing it. As the pitches were thrown, NJC would try to battle back to get enough runs, but could only get one, and would fall to the Indians 14-11.
Northeastern will be on the road as they play the Rattlers from Otero on March 10 & 11.