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Dragons Fall in Region VI Title Game

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By Hutchinson CC Sports Information

 

DODGE CITY, Kan. – A record-breaking season for the Hutchinson Community College softball team came to a close on Sunday in the championship game of the 2023 Region VI Tournament at Legends Park.

No. 15 Butler broke a tie with a two-out single in the top of the seventh inning to defeat No. 14 Hutchinson 6-5.

The Blue Dragons end 2023 with a school-record number of wins and tying a team record for fewest losses in a season with a 44-8 record. The 2023 Blue Dragons set seven team records and tied another this season.

Playing in their first regional final since 2018 and first Division I final since 1992, the Blue Dragons had leads of 2-0 and 3-2 after two innings.

The Blue Dragons cashed in on two walks and two errors to lead 2-0 after one inning. Alexis Mastin singled home Ella Dougherty and Allie Stipsits‘ sacrifice fly brought Olivia Sandoval in to score

Butler tied the game with three-straight two-out hits in the second to knot the score at 2-2. Korri Lies led off the bottom of the second with a walk. She moved to third after a sacrifice bunt and groundout and scored on Madison Grimes two-out single to right field for a 3-2 Dragon lead.

The Grizzlies then scored the game’s next three runs – one in the third and two in the fourth – to take a 5-3 lead.

The Dragons rallied to tie the game in the fifth. Riley Wertz singled to right field to drive in Mastin and pull the Dragons with 5-4. Hutchinson tied the game when Korri Lies hit into a fielder’s choice to score pinch-runner Tamara Lozoya with the tying run.

The Blue Dragons had six hits from six different players. Dougherty, Sandoval, Grimes, Mastin, Jaeleigh Darnell and Wertz all had singles. Grimes, Mastin, Stipsits, Wertz and Lies had RBIs

Morgan Pennycuff (17-3) made her first relief appearance, but took the loss. She worked three innings in relief, allowing two hits and one earned run with a walk and three strikeouts.

Butler had nine hits against three Blue Dragon pitchers – Emily MunsonKierstan Weitze and Pennycuff.

In addition to the team record for wins, the 2023 Blue Dragons also set records for winning percentage (.846), runs scored (510), doubles (130), total bases (878), RBIs (471) and walks drawn (123).

Goetz broke four single-season records this season. The Blue Dragon first baseman set season records for home runs (20), RBIs (98), extra-base hits (37) and slugging percentage (.908). Goetz also hit a career-record 27 home runs in her two seasons.

Grimes ends her three-year Blue Dragon career with eight Hutchinson records, including career batting average (.444); total hits (214), which is No. 3 in KJCCC history; runs scored (180), RBIs (174), doubles (44), triples (11), total bases (335) and extra-base hits (72).

Wertz finished with a team and KJCCC record with 17 saves. She also finished tied for sixth with 18 career home runs.

The 2023 Blue Dragons reached 1,000 all-time victories this season and head coach Jaime Rose reached 600 career coaching wins.

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