For the first time since 2009, the Prosper softball team will advance to the second round of the playoffs in their quest for a state championship. The team defeated Frisco Centennial in a three-game series last week at McKinney High School.
Game 1 — Frisco Centennial 2, Prosper 1
The Lady Eagles opened up against the Centennial Lady Titans on Thursday, April 27. The team got off to an impressive start, earning the first run of the game in the first inning after Alex Beatty ran in on Bailey Zornes’s single. However, Centennial held the Lady Eagles scoreless for the remainder of the game. Prosper maintained control of the lead until the fourth inning, when the Lady Titans slammed a homerun to give them a 2-1 lead. The score proved to be too much for the Lady Eagles to overcome, handing Prosper the first loss in the series.
During the game, Prosper produced five runs and had four walks. Alex Beatty, Miranda Ortega and Julia Bumford each had a hit, while Bailey Zornes went 2-for-3 on the night. Last week’s Athlete of the Week Rachel Eckrote was solid again at the pitcher’s mound, giving up two unearned runs on six hits. She also added to her strikeout count, dishing out seven strikeouts and only walking two of the Lady Titans.
Game 2 – Prosper 8, Frisco Centennial 2
Following Thursday night’s loss, the Lady Eagles were back in action on Friday, April 28, for game two against Centennial. Eager to regain some momentum in the series, the team boasted an explosive start. Rachel Eckrote kept Centennial scoreless in the top of the first, and Avery Colclaser gave the Lady Eagles the lead off a sacrifice fly ball by Bailey Zornes. Centennial did retaliate with two runs of their own in the second, but it would be the only time the Lady Titans would see the lead. Prosper’s fiery offense answered with four runs in the second, one in the third, and one final run in the sixth to take game two in a dominating 8-2 win.
The Lady Eagles were seemingly unstoppable at the plate, with twelve hits and five walks. Brooklyn Reiff was 4-for-4 at the plate and Nora Burns went 3-for-4. Alex Beatty hit a double and Julia Bumford had a homerun. Both Natalie Filiatrault and Bailey Zornes has 2 RBIs, going 1-for-3. Avery Colclaser was also 1-for-3, and scored two runs. In addition, the Centennial pitcher chose to walk Abby Smith all four times she was at bat.
In her seven innings, Eckrote allowed nine hits and just two runs, and struck out eleven Lady Titan batters.
Game 3 – Prosper 11, Frisco Centennial 1
After tying up the series, the two teams were forced to play a tie-breaker to determine the bi-district champion. Prosper was relentless in game three, scoring three runs in the opening inning. Avery Colclaser again scored off a Bailey Zornes sacrifice hit, and Julia Bumford slammed a double play shortly after to bring home courtesy runner Shelby Lantz. The Lady Eagles ended the play with a big triple by Miranda Ortega to bring in Bumford. In the second inning, Nora Burns scored after Natalie Filiatrault’s single. They also racked up six runs in the third, with Bumford, Beatty, and Burns all hitting doubles. Centennial tried to lessen the voracious Prosper attack late in the fourth inning with a single run, but were no match for the Lady Eagles. They added their final run in the fifth inning to run-rule the Lady Titans and take the series.
Prosper had a total of 14 hits in the game, including six doubles and a triple. They walked five times, four of which were Abby Smith. Even more impressive, they did not strike out in the contest. Julia Bumford was on fire, posting three doubles, while Avery Colcaster, Alex Beatty and Nora Burns each contributed a double. Bailey Zornes was 1-for-3 at the plate and was extremely helpful in the game with three RBIs. Natalie Filiatrault also had two RBIs. Colcaster went 3-for-3, scoring three times and added an RBI to the win. Pitcher Rachel Eckrote gave up just one run, and forced four strikeouts to bring her ERA to 1.75.
With the series victory, the lady eagles are now bi-district champions and are 21-9 on the year. They will take on North Forney on May 6 at 7 p.m. for the area championship.