SPORTS: 14U softball rallies for tournament win

LYNDEN — Mariah Frazier cured the North Olympic 14U softball tournament team’s heat aversion with one swing of the bat.

Down 4-3 to Twin Falls, Idaho, in the bottom of the sixth inning, and reeling under the oppressive heat at the Babe Ruth Northwest Region tournament championship, North Olympic needed a spark on Sunday.

That’s when Frazier stepped to the plate and belted a leadoff home run that changed everything, North Olympic head coach Brian Dills said Monday.

A handful of hits and three runs later, and the Port Angeles all-stars were well on their way to a 7-4 win and an undefeated run through the regional tournament.

“It was brutal,” North Olympic coach Brian Dills said of the 90-degree temperatures. “It was hard for them to get going. That home run that Mariah hit made the difference.

“When she hit that homer . . . nobody cared about the temperature. Everybody wanted to hit that ball.”

North Olympic had little trouble doing that all tournament long, outscoring opponents 56-12 on its way to a 6-0 showing. It also went 6-0 at the state tournament.

“They just played well,” Dills said. “We were pretty shaky on defense at the beginning of this postseason, but by regionals our errors were down to almost nothing.

“We had a hard time getting our timing down [on offense], but when we did we really took it to [them].”

Bailey Dills went the distance to earn the win in Sunday’s championship game, which was actually double elimination.

She gave up four earned runs, six hits and three walks while striking out four. She also helped her own cause going 2-for-3 at the plate with an RBI and a run scored.

Teammate Jena Chamberlin was 1-for-2 with a two-run double in the sixth that broke the game open. Lauren Aguirre was 2-for-2 with a walk and three runs scored, while Maddie Hinrichs and Rachel Eastey each had hits.

Babe Ruth does not have a softball World Series at the 14U level, so the team will have to be content with a regional title.

“It was just a good experience for these girls to get out of town and play,” Dills said. “Hopefully they will get something for [14U] in the future.”

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