The Heppner/Ione Mustangs softball team opened Blue Mountain Conference action Saturday with a home doubleheader against Adrian, and it showed just how competitive their league will be.
The Antelopes shut out the Mustangs 8-0 in the opener before Heppner responded with a 7-6 win to end the day.
“This league is tough,” Heppner/Ione coach Rick Johnston said. “There’s a lot of state champions coming out of it. There’s no easy mark in this league, and that’ll make us a better team.”
The Mustangs led 7-1 going into the seventh inning in Game 2 before the Antelopes reeled off five runs with Dakota Durfey on the mound for Heppner, who had been pitching since the fourth inning of game one.
Durfey finished the day with 10 total strikeouts.
“She came in and did what we depend on her to do,” Johnston said of Durfey.
“We needed Dakota to step up and do her job, and she did. I wasn’t real pleased with our base running, but we’re a young team. We’re going to make some blunders. These girls will work on that; I have no doubt in my mind. They’re competitors.”
The Mustangs (3-2, 1-1 BMC) will host a doubleheader Friday against Union/Cove in BMC action. First pitch is at 2 p.m.
PILOT ROCK/NIXYAAWII 12-7, WESTON-MCEWEN 5-4 ― The Rockets handed the host TigerScots back-to-back losses in Blue Mountain Conference play Saturday.
In the first game, the Rockets pulled away for good with four runs in the top of the second inning, bolstered by a double by Logan Weinke. Weinke went 3-for-4 with five runs and an RBI to finish the game. Quinton Orr was 2-for-4 with one run and four RBIs.
The TigerScots got two runs from Tanner Sater, while Ethan Ezell went 2-for-3 with two RBIs.
The Rockets held Weston-McEwen scoreless the first three innings in Game 2. Austin Drake, who pitched all seven innings, struck out five, but allowed four runs off seven hits.
Weinke went 2-for-4 with two runs, while Ben Combs drove in two runs.
The TigerScots had an impressive offensive showing from Blane Peal, who went 3-for-3 with two runs and two RBIs.
Pilot Rock/Nixyaawii (4-1, 3-0 BMC) host Grant Union/Prairie City on Tuesday, while Weston-McEwen (1-7, 1-2 BMC) will host Union/Cove.
BIG BEND 8-7, BLUE MOUNTAIN 7-3 — The Timberwolves dropped a doubleheader Saturday to the visiting Vikings to fall to 3-5 in East Region play.
BMCC (14-11 overall) led 7-5 through eight innings of the first game, but gave up three runs in the top of the ninth, bolstered by an RBI double by Christian Santillanes.
Matthew Plato went 2-for-4 for the Vikings with a double, a solo home run and two RBIs.
Dylan Grogan pitched the first six innings for the Timberwolves, allowing five runs on seven hits, while striking out nine. Dale Takalo pitched the ninth, giving up three runs on three hits. He walked two.
In the second game, the Vikings held BMCC to just six hits — two by Hunter Hughes, including a double.
Derek Almanza had a double and a solo home run in the fourth inning for Big Bend (10-11, 7-1 East).
COLUMBIA BASIN 7-11, BLUE MOUNTAIN 6-10 — After a pair of losses Saturday to the Hawks in Pasco, the Timberwolves are 2-10 in East Region play.
BMCC trailed 7-2 through six innings of the first game, then hung four runs on the board in the top of the seventh, but it wouldn’t be enough.
Jesslyn Kriebs went 3-for-4 with two doubles and two RBIs for BMCC.
Vanessa Hoke pitched a complete game for CBC, walking one and striking out eight.
In the second game, the Timberwolves again made a late push with three runs in the top of the seventh, but once again came up short.
Mariah Moulton went 2-for-3 with a home run and three RBIs for BMCC, which also got a double and three RBIs from Kiersten Miller.