TWIN FALLS – The Blackfoot Broncos softball team played perhaps its toughest opponent of the year Saturday and it came in one of the biggest games of the season.
The Bishop Kelly Lady Knights stood between the Broncos and their ability to play in the 2019 state softball championships in Coeur d’Alene.
The Broncos had just completed a tough three games on Thursday and were being asked to travel to Twin Falls to face the Lady Knights in a winner-take-all game on a neutral field. The biggest hurdle would be the Knights themselves.
Amazingly enough,the Knights carried a 21-7 record into the play-in game and also amazingly enough, did not win their own district tournament, falling to Middleton and Ridgevue, another pair of 20-game winners in the process.
That was just bad luck for the Lady Broncos, as they knew going in that their best days are still ahead of them, but look what they accomplished this season.
They had a team with only a few seniors on the squad and their best players were all sophomores or juniors, including pitchers like Kymber Wieland and Maggie Hepworth, infielders like Kyah Henderson and Chloe Cronquist and Tylar Dalley, all underclassmen with their best days ahead of them.
It didn’t matter, they went to Twin Falls and eagerly anticipated the opportunity to tangle with one of the best teams in the state and they did not shirk from that opportunity.
The bottom line was that Bishop Kelley had a pitcher who was averaging two strikeouts per inning and the Broncos’ offense didn’t play its best game of the year, right when it was needed the most.
The Lady Knights were tough from the first pitch and when the game was over, it was Biship Kelly 6, Blackfoot 1.
The Lady Broncos didn’t play a bad game, which they have a time or two during the season when the defense decided not to show up, they played well, they just didn’t have an answer for the Knights’ pitcher.
Wieland started and gave it her best, lasting four innings. Grace Callister drove in the Lady Broncos’ only run in the game.
The end result is the end of the season for the Lady Broncos and plans are already being put together for how they will get right back into action and some include summer ball for most of the ladies.