BRIDGMAN — The Bridgman High School softball team capped a May 14 sweep of Parchment that clinched at least a share of the BCS Red title with a game-two comeback victory.

After winning the opener 3-2, the Bees trailed 8-3 heading into the sixth inning before rallying for seven runs to pull out an 10-8 triumph.

Both teams finished with 11 base hits. Bridgman was led by Mackenzie Knowlton’s three-hit performance (with two runs scored and one driven in), two-hit showings by Madeline Oman (with a run scored) and Hannah Johnson (with a run batted in), a key run-scoring hit by Arie Hackett in the sixth frame (she also scored two runs), a hit, two RBIs and a run scored by Kaylee Shuler, and base hits by Brianna Russell (with a run scored) and Natalie McNeil.

Autumn Brown also had one of the Bees’ six runs batted in. Parchment was plagued by errors (eight fielding miscues were charged).

McNeil was the winning pitcher in both contests. She scattered nine hits while striking out nine in the opener.

Bridgman made the most of its six game-one hits, with Knowlton driving in two and scoring once on a hit, and Brown going 2-for-3 with a double and a run scored. Shuler, Oman and McNeil also had hits.

Bridgman didn’t allow a baserunner Tuesday, May 21, as it clinched sole possession of the Berrien-Cass-St. Joseph Conference Red Division title with a 15-0, 10-0 sweep of Comstock.

Johnson threw three perfect innings in the 15-0 win, and McNeil had 10 strikeouts over five flawless innings in the 10-0 opening-game victory.

Shuler led the Bees offensively, going 6-for-7 with a double, triple and home run between the two games. Madelyn Oman added two triples and drove in four runs.

The Bees were coming off two wins in a May 11 three-team tourney — a 16-1 rout of White Pigeon and a 3-1 win over South Haven.

Bridgman rapped out 16 hits against White Pigeon. Oman and Johnson both went 3-for-3 with three RBIs (Oman also tripled and scored three runs), Shuler had two hits including a home run, drove in two and scored three times, Ava Ward went 2-for-3 with three RBIs, Haylee Kanous had two hits, two runs batted in and two runs scored. Also getting base hits were Hackett (a triple), Knowlton and Brown.

Johnson gave up five hits and one run while striking out seven in four innings.

Knowlton went 3-for-4 with a hit and a run batted in against South Haven, Shuler and Oman had two hits apiece (Oman drove in a run), while Johnson, Brown and Russell also collected hits.

McNeil yielded four hits while striking out seven.

The Bees also swept Lawrence by 2-0 and 5-2 scores on May 10. 

The Bridgman softball team is scheduled to face New Buffalo at noon on Saturday, June 1, in a District semifinal game at Michigan Lutheran while River Valley (champions of the BCS White Division) takes on the host Titans or LMC at 10 a.m. The winner will meet in the title game to follow. On the baseball side RV and the Bees are set to play at noon on June 1 in a district semifinal showdown at Michigan Lutheran with the victor advancing to the championship contest. 

RIVER VALLEY

THREE OAKS — The River Valley High School baseball team won a thriller against Saugatuck in the opener of its May 18 home tournament and was leading Dowagiac in the title contest when rain ended play.

The Mustangs led Saugatuck 2-1 heading into the seventh inning, but the visitors scratched out two runs to lead 3-2.

River Valley was down to its last out when Tylar Montgomery was hit by a pitch and stile second base before Wil Korbel looped the baseball over the shortstop to drive in the tying score.

Levi Strauss then put it in play and was in a race to reach first base ahead of a throw which he looked likely to win before the ball sailed over the first baseman’s glove to send Korbel home with the winning run.

“I know that Wil is the fastest player around, so all I’ve got to do is put the ball in play and get on base and he’s scoring,” Strauss said.

The Mustangs were leading Dowagiac 4-0 in the fourth inning of the tournament finale when the rains came.

On the softball side River Valley defeated Dowagiac (7-4) and Watervliet (4-1) before the title game in the eight-team tourney was rained out.

In another key match-up, Kalamazoo Christian edged defending tournament champion New Prairie 4-2.

River Valley and K Christian finished the tournament title game at the beginning of a May 21 doubleheader, with the Mustangs prevailing.

The Comets won the second contest that evening.

The Mustangs took two BCS White contests at New Buffalo on May 14 by 13-0 and 7-4 scores.

Tiffany Hyatt, Kira Kelley and Kyleigh LePinski had two hits each in the opener while Ella Olson, Emma Springer and Madi Vollman all drove in three runs.

Kyleigh LePinske led the Mustangs in game two with three hits and two RBIs. Madi Vollman and Emma Springer had two hits for RV while Ella Olson and Haile York each drove in two runs.

River Valley has repeated as BCS White champion.

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