MANHATTAN — Randy Cygan was worried.
Manhattan had just played a pair of non-conference doubleheaders over the weekend in Florence and key conference game awaited the team Monday at Taylor Park.
A victory would put the Tigers in the driver’s seat for claiming the conference title, and following a slow start they rolled to a 15-5 victory against Powell County in six innings.
“We did great tonight,” Cygan, who is Manhattan’s second-year coach, said. “We’re hitting all the way through the lineup. Sometimes that’s the only difference is just getting everybody hitting the same game.”
Manhattan tallied 11 hits led by Adele Didriksen and Shayla Shea, who each had three hits and combined for three RBI’s.
Powell County loaded the bases in the top of the first, but was only able to scratch one run across. Pitcher Meagan Elgas overcame a pair of walks and a hit batsman to get out the jam.
While Elgas eventually allowed nine hits, including a solo home run to Madison Johnson in the fourth, the freshman had a productive day. She tallied nine strike outs and worked out of a couple jams.
The Tigers took a 3-1 lead in the third, and then countered Johnson’s homer in the fourth with eight runs in the bottom half of the frame to break a 3-all tie. Lizzie Rasnick and Didriksen each belted RBI-doubles, Casey Elfland and Shea added singles, and Manhattan capitalized on three errors.
The Tigers scored three more runs in the fifth and then Malia Friese hit a walk-off single to the right-center gap to score Amy Grevious to end the game via the 10-run mercy rule in the sixth.
“Everybody’s swinging the bats and you could see that we just played four games this weekend. It paid off tonight,” said Cygan. “A lot of girls swinging bats on the weekend carried over.”
The Tigers split a pair of games against Lincoln County on Friday, and then swept Troy on Saturday. They tallied 37 hits against Troy.
Manhattan jumped out to a 7-0 lead in the opener against Lincoln County and then held off a late rally for an 8-5 win. Elgas picked up the victory in the circle, while Didriksen and Rasnick each hit doubles to lead the offense.
Lincoln County scored in every inning of Game 2, however, en route to a 17-10 victory. The Lions tallied 16 hits and capitalized on seven errors.
“We just ran a little out of steam on pitchers on Friday, but we played good,” said Cygan. “The error bug got us in the second game.”
Claire Nolan was saddled with the loss in the circle, while sisters Daela and Adele Didriksen, as well as Casey Elfland, each belted triples offensively. But the top of the Tigers’ lineup struggled.
“We were trying to stay with them because they got a good lead on us a little bit. We were coming back and then the top didn’t hit,” Cygan said. “We got all the bottom on, the bottom five batters, and just died at the top.”
Manhattan rode a pair of big innings en route to routing Troy. An 11-inning fifth inning broke open Game 1 in a 17-5 victory, and then the Tigers scored 13 in the first inning en route to a 20-2 win in Game 2.
Grevious belted a pair of home runs in the opener, while Adele Didriksen was 2 for 2 with a double in Game 2.
On Tuesday, Manhattan lost its first conference game of the season against Anaconda, 8-6. The Copperheads built a 7-0 lead and then held off a late rally.
Adele Didriksen belted a two-run homer in the seventh and later scored to draw Manhattan within two runs before the rally ran out of steam.
Shea added a double en route to finishing 2 for 4 from the plate.
The Tigers (10-6, 4-1) are back in action this weekend at a tournament in Butte.
Manhattan 8, Lincoln County 5
Manhattan 150 011 0 - 8 6 2
Lincoln County 000 005 0 - 5 9 9
Meagan Elgas, Claire Nolan and Daela Didriksen. Avory Escobar and n/a. W - Elgas (6-3). L - Escobar.
MANHATTAN (7-4) - Adele Didriksen 1-3 (2B), D. Didriksen 1-4, Amy Grevious 0-3, Malia Friese 0-4, Matilda Dietz 0-4, Natalie Scott 1-4, Casey Elfland 1-3, Lizzie Rasnick 2-4 (2B), Elgas 0-3.
LINCOLN COUNTY - Maya Carvey 0-4, Rhianna Hawkin 2-4 (3B), Escobar (2B), Katie Schmidt 1-3 (2B), Clara Miller 1-4, Haylie Hall 1-4, Lily Wilbur 0-0, Reena Truman 2-3 (2B), Michael Shea 1-2 (HR).
Lincoln County 17, Manhattan 10
Lincoln County 153 223 1 - 17 16 4
Manhattan 402 030 1 - 10 8 7
Avory Escobar, Kiah Hawkins (5) and n/a. Claire Nolan, Meagan Elgas (4) and Daela Didriksen. W - Escobar. L - Nolan (1-2).
LINCOLN COUNTY - Maya Carvey 2-4, Rhianna Hawkin 0-2, Emma Person 0-1, Escobar 4-5 (2 2B, 3B), Katie Schmidt 2-4 (2B, HR), Ciara Miller 2-5, Haylie Hall 2-5, Kaitlin Bernhard 0-1, Kiah Hawkins 2-4 (2B), Reena Truman 0-3, Aubree Sherwood 0-1, Michael Shea 2-5 (2B).
MANHATTAN (7-5) - Adele Didriksen 1-4 (3B), D. Didriksen 2-5 (3B), Amy Grevious 2-5 (2B), Malia Friese 1-4, Natalie Scott 0-2, Matilda Dietz 1-3, Lizzie Rasnick 0-1, Sierra Blanchard 0-1, Casey Elfland 1-3 (2B), Katie Butts 0-1, Elgas 0-2, Nolan 1-1.
Manhattan 17, Troy 5
Manhattan 141 0(11) - 17 12 1
Troy 111 0 2 - 5 8 1
Meagan Elgas and Daela Didriksen. Mazzy Hermes and n/a. W - Elgas (7-3). L - Hermes.
MANHATTAN (8-5) - Adele Didriksen 1-4, Lexi Miller 0-1, Casey Elfland 1-2, D. Didriksen 2-3 (2B), Amy Grevious 2-4 (2 HR), Malia Friese 2-3, Lizzie Rasnick 0-1, Natalie Scott 1-2, Sierra Blanhard 2-3, Elgas 1-4, Katie Butts 0-0.
TROY - Kaylee Tunnison 2-2 (2 3B), Izzy Ramirez 1-2, Talise Becquart 1-3, Cami Finley 0-3, Tristyn Weinbark 2-3 (HR), Montana Rice 1-3, Annie Day 0-2, Hermes 1-2 (2B), Paige Chagel 0-2, Oliviah Ramirez 0-0.
Manhattan 20, Troy 2
Troy 2 00 - 2 3 6
Manhattan (13)15 - 20 11 4
Claire Nolan and Daela Didriksen. Annie Day, Tristyn Weinbark (2) and n/a. W - Nolan (2-2). L - Day.
TROY - Kaylee Tunnison 0-2, Izzy Ramirez 1-2, Talise Becquart 1-2, Montan Rice 0-2, Weinbark 0-2, Cami Finley 1-1, Day 0-1, Kyran Kelso 0-0, Harlee Huisentruit 0-1.
MANHATTAN (9-5) - Adele Didriksen 2-2 (2B), Katie Butts 1-1, D. Didriksen 2-3, Amy Grevious 2-2, Malia Friese 1-4, Natalie Scott 1-1, Lizzie Rasnick 0-1, Lexi Miller 1-2, Casey Elfland 1-3, Sierra Blanchard 0-3.
Manhattan 15, Powell County 5
Powell County 100 220 - 5 9 5
Manhattan 003 831 - 15 16 4
Rilee Gray and Emma Packer. Meagan Elgas and Daela Didriksen. W - Elgas (8-3). L - Gray.
POWELL COUNTY (4-6) - Gray 1-4, Shaina Allen 0-3, Alyssa Lamb 2-3, Rachael Nicholson 3-3, Jesse Graveley 0-4, Madison Johnson 1-3 (HR), Morgan Stevenson 1-3, Makenzi Meagher 1-3, Packer 0-3.
MANHATTAN (10-5) - Adele Didriksen 3-5 (2B, 2 3B)), D. Didriksen 1-5 (2B), Amy Grevious 1-3 (2B), Shayla Shea 3-4 (2B), Malia Friese 1-5, Natalie Scott 2-2 (2B, 3B), Casey Elfland 1-4 (3B), Matilda Dietz 1-3, Lizzie Rasnick 2-4 (2B, 3B).