By ROY ALLEN
Seward sports information director
Seward sophomore Kristyna Garcia blasted a pair of grand slams Friday afternoon in the Midland College Classic in Texas, leading the Lady Saints to a 16-7 win over El Paso and 7-0 win over Vernon, while Seward dropped the middle game of their busy day 5-1 to Howard to finish the day 2-1.
In Game 1, El Paso took an early 2-0 lead on the Lady Saints, but Seward stormed back getting 3rd inning home runs from Maycee Koontz and Sydney Epp to put them in front 4-2. They didn’t stop there, getting two more on a Tejana error and their seventh run of the inning on an RBI single from Lexi Manyik before finishing up a 10 run frame on another El Paso error to take a 10-2 lead after three.
El Paso cracked a two run home run in the 4th to make it a 10-4 game and the Lady Saints were right back at it in the bottom of the frame, scoring seven more times, highlighted by a grand slam from Kristyna Garcia to take a 17-4 lead.
The Tejanas got two in the top of the 5th, but it was three less than they needed as the game was halted with the run rule going into effect in a 17-6 Lady Saints win.
Seward needed just 10 hits for their 17 runs in the win, using 8 walks and a bevy of El Paso errors to seed victory. Garcia finished 2 for 3 with the 4 RBI’s on the grand slam while Koontz was 2 for 3 with 2 RBI’s and 3 runs scored at the top of the Seward order. Monique Ashley earned the win in the circle despite her shakiest outing of the season as she allowed 6 hits, three of those leaving the park, and 6 runs in the 5 inning complete game while striking out 6 to improve to 3-0 on the year.
In Game 2, the Lady Saints took on the Hawks of Howard.
The Hawks grabbed an early 2-0 lead in the 1st inning with a pair of tallies, but Seward cut the advantage in half on an RBI single from Garcia in the 3rd to make it 2-1.
Seward starter Macy Pritchard kept the Lady Saints right there through four, but Seward couldn’t getting anything going on offense as it remained a 2-1 game.
Howard opened up their lead in the bottom of the 4th, getting back to back one out singles to score three runs and make it a 5-1 game.
The Lady Saints never threatened again as they managed just one baserunner in the final three innings as Howard finished off the 5-1 win.
Seward managed just 4 hits in the loss while Garcia had the only RBI. Pritchard took the loss, going the distance while allowing 7 hits and 5 runs to fall to 0-2 on the year.
In the final game of a busy day, Seward took on Vernon. The Lady Saints got on the board first, taking advantage of a Chaparral error in the 2nd to go ahead 1-0.
Lady Saints starter Ruby Gonzalez worked a quick 1-2-3 top half of the 3rd and worked around some trouble in the top of the 4th to keep it a 1-0 game in favor of Seward.
Taylor Kathler added to the Seward lead with an RBI single in the bottom of the inning and Epp popped her second long ball of the day in the 5th to make it a 3-0 game.
Gonzalez remained in control, keeping Vernon off the board through six and in the bottom of the Seward 6th, Garcia blasted her second grand slam of the day, giving the Lady Saints some breathing room as they went ahead 7-0.
That was more than enough for Gonzalez who allowed just an infield single in the 7th to wrap up her shutout and give the Lady Saints a 7-0 win.
Seward only outhit Vernon 10-8 in the contest, getting three hits from Kathler and two from Jullian Atteberry in the win. Garcia’s only hit was the big one, a grand slam, to finish with 4 RBI’s. Gonzalez was sharp in the circle, tossing a complete game shutout for the Lady Saints, scattering 8 hits and a walk while striking out 3.
The Lady Saints move to 5-2 on the year with the 2-1 day. Seward will continue their play in the Midland Classic on Saturday when they take on Odessa and Luna in a pair of contests before returning home for their 2017 home opener.