LAS CRUCES — An inability to hold a three-run lead in the final inning bounced the Portales Lady Rams’ from the Class 3A state softball tournament.
Hope Christian pieced together five-straight hits to score four runs in the bottom of the seventh inning and beat Portales 5-4 Friday morning in a losers bracket contest.
Hope’s Nicole Nakamura singled home the winning run.
“They rallied at the end,” Portales coach Robbie Crowley said. “I thought the girls played well in the state tournament. The future looks pretty bright for us since I’m only losing one player from the team.”
Amanada Flores went 2-for-3 and drove in all four runs for the Lady Rams, who finished the season 16-13 a year after reaching the state title game.
Portales got on the board in the first inning with the aid of singles by Tayler Lucero and Marquez, who pitched the first five innings.
LeAnne Blaeser relieved Marquez in the sixth inning and was charged with the loss.
Hope Christian 5, Portales 4
Portales 202 000 0 — 4 5 1
Hope 100 000 4 — 5 8 0
Leading hitters — Portales: Sorina Flores 2-3, Amanda Marquez 1-3, Tayler Lucero 1-3, Cynthia Armijo 1-3. Hope: Caitlin Elks 2-3, Emilla Davies 1-3.
WP — Breanna Grey
LP — Amanda Marquez (5IP, 3H, 1R) LeAnne Blaeser (2 IP, 5H, 4R)