GRANTSBURG––The Grantsburg Pirates’ softball season came to a screeching halt Tuesday night in the sectional semi-finals at the hands of Turtle Lake/Clayton. The game ended in the fifth inning with a final score of 14-3.
These two conference rivals know each other well and have played twice this year already, splitting in the regular season. Their first meeting on April 1 went to the Pirates, 7-6 on their home field. The second game on April 25 was won by TL/C, again by one run, 6-5.
None of that mattered Tuesday night, because this time it was win-or-go-home. The winner moved one step closer to state, while the other packed up their glove and cleats for the last time.
Unfortunately for the Pirates, Tuesday was not their night and they saw their quest to Madison come to an end. The usually high-powered offense of the Pirates struggled at the plate only mustering seven hits for the game. What’s more telling is the fact they left eight runners stranded on base.
Two of those hits came in the bottom of the fifth inning with their backs against the wall. Susan Roberts singled to get the inning started and Rachel Tooze reached on a fielder’s choice. With two outs, Belle Quimby drew a walk to get on, and in stepped Ellie Duncan who hit a rope up the left-center line to clear the bases. In the books, it goes down as a double, but she reached third on the throw home. But that is where the scoring and the game ended.
The Pirates end their season with a 16-4 record including a 7-0 conference record good for a first-place finish-- their 19th conference championship; a regional championship—their 17th title, and a record-breaking 18 home runs on the season. Nothing to hang their heads about.