Bailee Noland hit two home runs, including a key two-out, three-run blast in the top of the seventh inning, to help Hermiston to an 8-5 victory over Holy Names in the consolation bracket at the 3A state softball tournament at the Regional Athletic Complex in Lacey, Washington.
Hermiston’s tournament run would end with the next game as Snohomish escaped with a 4-2 victory.
Hermiston finished its season with a 17-10 record.
The Bulldogs trailed Holy Names 4-0 heading into the the sixth inning, where Noland hit a solo shot and Hermiston hung three runs on the board for a 5-3 game.
Holy Names failed to score in the bottom half of the inning, putting the Bulldogs at the plate in the seventh.
With two out, and Kalei Smith on third, Ashley Cameron hit an RBI single to push Smith across the plate and bring the Bulldogs within a run.
With Samantha Atilano on second and Cameron on first, Noland sent a 3-1 pitch out of the park for an 8-5 lead.
“We just finally started hitting the ball,” Hermiston coach Kate Greenough said. “The girls made adjustments. That was the big change there.”
The Cougars left a runner stranded on third in the seventh to finish the game.
“Holy Names has some scrappy hitters,” Greenough said. “You only have winners from here on out. Every team’s going to be good.”
Noland, who drove in four runs, also pitched a complete game, scattering eight hits.
Sydney Stefani and Cameron also drove in runs for the Bulldogs, who also got two hits and two runs scored from Smith.
Chloe Sexton drove in two runs for the Cougars, while Caitlin Manning, Logan Luebbe and Sydney Esterberg each had two hits.
Snohomish 4, Hermiston 2
The Bulldogs’ season came to an end with a loss to the Panthers in the consolation round.
The Bulldogs scored on a Bailee Noland fielder’s choice in the first inning, but the Panthers pulled away from there, scoring twice in the third inning and once in the fourth and sixth innings.
Sydney Stefani went 2-for-3 with a triple for Hermiston, while Samantha Atilano was 2-for-4 and Daisy Maddox 2-for-3.
Bonney Lake 5, Hermiston 0
Brooke Nelson threw a no-hitter and struck out 19 to lead the Panthers past the Bulldogs in the first round of the state tournament.
It was the first state no-hitter for Nelson, who has signed with the University of Washington.
“She does a good job of setting up batters,” Hermiston coach Kate Greenough said of Nelson. “We fell for some of her tricks. She’s about as good as they come.”
Bonney Lake, the defending state champion, scored five runs in the first inning, but were held scoreless the rest of the game.
“We played really great defense the rest of the game, we just weren’t hitting the ball well in that first inning,” Greenough said.
Grace Brown and Hailee Hagins each hit a double for the Panthers.
Bailee Noland gave up five runs on six hits in the first. Janelle Almaguer came on in relief and held the Panthers scoreless.
“Janelle pitched awesome,” Greenough said. “They didn’t get a runner to third base for the rest of the game.”