By PATRICK SLACK
Trailing 5-3 heading into its final at bat, Pierz loaded the bases with one out on base hits by juniors Elizabeth Tomala and Anna Welle and a walk by junior Megan Boser in its softball home opener against Little Falls, Thursday.
Junior Michaela Rocheleau followed with an RBI walk to pull the Pioneers within one, then junior Brook Brausen shot a base hit into left field.
Boser crossed the plate on the play with the tying run, but Welle was thrown out at home to keep the Flyers alive.
Pierz starting pitcher Tiara Hopkins wouldn’t allow it to be for long, though, as she delivered a clutch walk-off single to bring home Rocheleau and give the Pioneers their first win of the season, 6-5.
“The Pierz bats were fired up and ready to go,” Pierz head coach Rachel Werk said. “Megan Boser contributed some great hits at the right time and starting pitcher Tiara Hopkins had a great game in her first varsity start and also contributed at the plate.
Little Falls scored two runs to break a 3-3 tie in the top of the seventh before Pierz rallied.
Tomala went 4-for-4 and scored two runs, Brausen delivered three hits and Boser drove home three to lead the Pioneers offensively.
Hopkins earned the complete-game win on the mound.
Seniors Holly Kampa and Brichelle Brummer each had two hits and knocked in a run to lead the Flyers.
Senior Alayna Kabanuk doubled, while seniors Britian Conley and Makayla Jorgensen and juniors Jamie Jenks and Emily Suska singled.
“It was a game both teams could have won,” Little Falls head coach Ron Hinnenkamp said. “We had a little letdown in the last inning and let a lead slip away. We had some opportunities and the girls had better at bats as the game went along. Kala Bzdok started two double plays for us on defense, though a couple of key errors cost us.”