ST. GEORGE — The Region 9 softball season kicked off on Tuesday, opening inter-region play for all eight teams in Southern Utah.
Snow Canyon and Hurricane secured sweeps over Cedar and Pine View, respectively, to leap to the top of the standings while Canyon View split with Crimson Cliffs and Desert Hills went 1-1 with Dixie.
Two-game series were played in home-and-home fashion, starting on Tuesday with game two being played on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday. Several teams also continued non-region contests before the meat of the regional schedule gets underway.
Here are recaps from the action around Southern Utah softball between March 23 and March 26:
Dixie recovers from blowout to top Desert Hills in extras, earn split
Tuesday: Desert Hills 25, Dixie 8
Friday: Dixie 8, Desert Hills 7
In both games, teams with an early lead went on to lose the contest.
At Dixie, the Flyers built out a 4-1 lead over the Thunder before giving up three in the fourth. The Thunder caught fire from there, scoring five runs in the fifth, four in the sixth and a staggering 12 in the seventh to walk away with a game-one victory handily.
The Thunder recorded eight hits in the seventh with three home runs. Laci Jones and Aisey Gargano went back-to-back and Alexandra Aiken followed with another three batters later.
Aiken and Faith Baumgartner also had home runs earlier. In the game, Jones and Tatum Gardner each collected four hits. Jones drove in six runs. Gardner threw all seven innings, allowing six earned runs and two unearned. She struck out five.
Debra Tofi threw 4.1 innings for Dixie and allowed 10 runs. Four of those were earned. She also collected a team-leading three hits. Kylee Terrell hit a homer.
On Friday, Desert Hills took an early lead at home. They scored two in the first on a Jones homer to left. Dixie knotted the game after Tofi and Ashlee Sevilla scored on passed balls. The Thunder retook the lead with scores in the fourth and fifth before the Flyers rallied for four in the sixth, highlighted by a Terrell solo homer. Talya Singleton also drove in a pair on a single.
The Thunder responded with a three-spot in the bottom half to go up 7-6. Aiken lined a two-RBI single to cap the rally. Dixie tied in the final frame after Tofi scored on an error and got the go-ahead run in the eighth when Singleton drove in the placed runner with a single.
Terrell got an infield pop out to hold the placed runner at second in the bottom half, who was also stalled after an error in left field. Terrell got two more fly outs to end the game.
Terrell entered after the first inning home run and pitched eight innings. Of her five earned runs allowed, only one was earned.
Singleton had three RBIs for Dixie on two hits. Jones and Baumgartner each had two runs driven in for Desert Hills.
Dixie stands at 4-5 entering its home contest with Canyon View on Tuesday.
Desert Hills is at 3-6 and hosts Cedar next.
Crimson Cliffs splits with Canyon View in intro to Region 9
Tuesday: Canyon View 10, Crimson Cliffs 0
Thursday: Crimson Cliffs 14, Canyon View 11
The Falcons handed Crimson Cliffs a rude welcome to Region 9 competition on Tuesday, scoring eight runs before the Mustangs even had a turn at bat. The first six hitters of the game reached base for Canyon View, five by hit and one by walk. Malia Davis then got a pair of consecutive strikeouts for Crimson before the Falcons rattled off four straight hits once again. Erin Robinson, Kenlee Clove and Kamryn Allen each recorded two hits in the first inning alone.
On the mound, Laynee Anzalone was dominant. She retired the first seven Mustangs in the game, six by strikeout. She totaled 13 K’s in the game.
Davis finally broke through with the bats in the third, grounding the first Region 9 hit in program history into left field. Abigail Swanson doubled later in the inning to account for Crimson’s only other hit in the game.
Pitching, Davis settled down and allowed only two runs in the final four innings before the 10-run rule was called. She allowed only one hit the rest of the way. Of her 10 runs allowed, only four were earned.
The bats awoke for Crimson in Cedar on Thursday and it was their turn to put up a crooked number in the early innings. The Mustangs scored eight in the second to jump out to a 10-1 lead.
In the first, Abigail Swanson led off the first with a single, but was outed on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Ashten Taylor before Afton Roberts singled. Taylor scored on a passed ball and Paisley Lantz scored Roberts with a double.
Kya Burningham started the big rally in the second with a leadoff home run. Ellie Brinkeroff singled before Swanson and Taylor walked. Roberts hit an RBI groundout and Lantz drove in two more. Ellie Herd hit a double before Burningham capped the scoring with her second home run of the inning.
Canyon View mounted a comeback that culminated in a five-spot in the sixth that made the score 14-11.
Allen drove in three for Canyon View on four hits. Burningham led Crimson Cliffs with three hits.
Crimson moved to 10-3 and play at Pine View on Tuesday.
Canyon View stands at 7-2 and travel to Dixie next.
Snow Canyon sweeps Cedar
Wednesday: Snow Canyon 11, Cedar 0
Friday: Snow Canyon 11, Cedar 3
Snow Canyon produced a steady offense, scoring in all but one inning across two games against Cedar.
On Wednesday, the Warriors scored in each of the five innings played and added multiple runs in every inning but the second. All starters recorded at least one hit, led by Jael Wilde and Kenna Staheli with two. Snow Canyon slammed four homers, one each by Emma Bingham, Kambrie Stuart, Staheli and Wilde.
Defensively, Jenna Thorkelson tampered the Cedar offense over all five innings. She allowed only three hits, all of which were singles. She threw only 47 pitches.
Friday started much the same way as the Warriors jumped out to 9-0 lead by the end of the third. They scored four runs in both the second and third innings.
Wilde and Kylie Hardy each collected two hits and three RBIs. Syd McCaul and Tyler Mooring each had two-hit games as well.
Cedar broke through in the fourth with a pair of runs. Kodi Nelson hit a single, the Reds’ first hit of the game. She was put out on a fielder’s choice, but two errors, a walk and a groundout later and Haylee Campbell and Braylee Peterson had crossed the plate.
Thorkelson again had a solid pitching performance, allowing the lone hit to Nelson and two runs, one unearned, in four innings. Mooring threw three innings of relief, allowing a lone unearned run on one hit and striking out five.
For Cedar, Payton Naegele allowed 11 runs in 4.1 innings, but only six were earned. Sydney Meek didn’t allow a base runner in her 1.2 frames of relief.
Cedar fell to 3-5 overall. They play at Desert Hills on Tuesday.
Snow Canyon improved to 8-4. The Warriors travel to Hurricane next.
Hurricane’s offense carries Tigers to sweep of Pine View
Tuesday: Hurricane 17, Pine View 10
Friday: Hurricane 17, Pine View 6
The Tigers scored 17 runs twice to take care of the Panthers.
On Tuesday, Hurricane jumped out quickly on the road, scoring six runs in the first. The Tigers got four hits in the inning including doubles by Chantell Pearson and Annie Hutchings and a triple by Riley Fox. They also got help from the Panthers on back-to-back errors to start the game.
Morgan Stout brought the score to 8-0 in the third on a two-RBI double.
The insurance became instantly important as Pine View scored seven in the bottom half. Audrey Lester drove in two with a single and Mairen Maclellan drove in another pair in the next at-bat with a double.
The Tigers scored in every inning from there on out, with three in the fourth and four in the seventh.
Fox, Pearson and Stout each had three hits for Hurricane. Pearson drove in five runs. Lester and Lexie Tueller led Pine View with two hits each.
In the second game, Hurricane piled up five runs in each the first and second innings to jump out 10-3. For good measure, they added three in the third and four in the fourth before fending off a Panthers rally in the top of the fifth to clinch the 10-run rule.
McKinlee Wright drove in three runs on three hits, including one of the Tigers’ four home runs. Hutchings, Pearson and Abby Stout all also went deep. Abby Stout also had three hits. The Tigers didn’t strike out once on offense.
Pearson struck out 11 across five innings pitched. She allowed five hits.
The 4-6 Panthers host Crimson Cliffs on Tuesday.
Hurricane also beat Enterprise and Kanab in non-region play to move to 6-3. The Tigers host Canyon View.
Tuesday’s game schedule (March 30)
- Canyon View at Dixie
- Cedar at Desert Hills
- Crimson Cliffs at Pine View
- Snow Canyon at Hurricane
Region 9 softball standings, as of March 29
- Snow Canyon 2-0 (8-4)
- Hurricane 2-0 (5-3)
- Canyon View 1-1 (7-1)
- Crimson Cliffs 1-1 (10-3)
- Dixie 1-1 (4-5)
- Desert Hills 1-1 (3-6)
- Pine View 0-2 (4-6)
- Cedar 0-2
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