Belgrade’s softball team wrapped up the regular season on a high note Friday at Bozeman. The offense tallied a dozen hits en route to a five-inning rout of the Hawks.
Tayler Thomas hit a solo home, a double and knocked in three runs in leading the Panthers to a 12-2 Eastern AA victory.
“The bats looked great today,” Belgrade head coach Joey Roberts said. “We jumped out and scored eight in the first inning. Tayler hit a lead off bomb today.”
The eight-run lead was more than enough cushion for Thomas, who started in the circle and did not allow a hit in three innings of work. The junior struck out four and allowed just one base runner on a walk.
“Looked really good, she looked great pitching,” said Roberts. “And we brought in Ella (Seaman) to get Ella some work and Ella did a great job. Gave up a few hits and one was a home run, but she was able to work out of a jam and get us that 10-run rule after five.”
Izzy Vantighem hit a two-run homer in the fifth to get Bozeman on the scoreboard, but Seaman eventually struck out Tailyn Black to get out of a jam.
Khloey Robinson, Randi Widdicombe and Seaman each had two hits, and Widdicombe drove in three runs.
With the win Belgrade finished 9-5 in league play and secured the No. 4 seed heading into next week’s state tournament in Missoula. Billings Senior and Billings West finished as the No. 1 and 2 seeds, respectively, and earned first round byes.
“Obviously it’s nice to get a bye but at the same time it’s also nice to get out and just play,” said Roberts. “When we were back in (Class) A we were in a position where we had a bye first round and you sit around and then you play a team that’s already coming off a win and they have momentum. So it’s kind of nice just to kind of get out and play early and hopefully get some momentum and keep it rolling.”
The Panthers (15-6) will play the No. 5 seed from the Western AA in a first round game at 1 p.m. The winner plays again at 5 p.m.
Belgrade 12, Bozeman 2
Belgrade 802 11 - 12 12 0
Bozmean 000 02 - 2 4 4
Tayler Thomas, Ella Seaman (4) and Khloey Robinson. Anna Toth and Izzy Vantighem.
BELGRADE (15-6) - Tayler Thomas 3-4 (2B, HR), Arin Eaton 0-2, Robinson 2-3, Sierra Tuss 0-0, Shaylis Osler 1-3, Lily Bolin 0-1, Tycelee Bowler 1-3, Olivia Mills 0-1, Brooklyn Ragland 0-2, Randi Widdicombe 2-3, Seaman 2-3, Abbie Morin 1-2.
BOZEMAN (5-16) - Jacobi Coombs 0-3, Josi Laufenberg 0-3, Tailyn Black 1-3, Betsy Hopkins 0-2, Madison Tobin 0-2, Brooke Brown 1-2 (2B), Vantighem1-2 (HR), Toth 1-1, C Williams 0-1.