MORRIS – It appeared as if senior night would end quickly and joyously for the Morris Redskins softball team on Monday night, as the Redskins were cruising to the tune of a 7-2 lead heading into the top of the seventh inning with a chance to close the door on the visiting Sycamore Spartans.
However, after a five-run rally that tied the game, it eventually took the Redskins six additional innings to come away with a 8-7 victory in 13 innings.
Five seniors were honored before the game and all five were in the lineup for the Redskins, as Maddy Feeney, Kelly Kolotka, Lauren Severson, Alex Cook and Kellen Bernickus combined for 10 of Morris’ 14 hits and seven of their eight runs scored. They’ve been a part of Morris head coach Jen Lowery’s program for all four years.
“They’re the keys to this program,” Lowery said. “They’ve been with us for four years, and it’s gonna be heartbreaking to see them go. They’re such good leaders, good athletes and great team players. They’re good role models for all of our younger girls.”
After trading zeroes through the game’s first two innings, Morris was able to get on the board first when Severson and Cook ripped a pair of RBI singles in the bottom of the third to give the Redskins the 2-0 lead. Severson finished 3 for 6 with an RBI and two runs scored.
“It was nice to see Lauren produce and get it going again,” Lowery said. “She’s been battling a sore arm, so hopefully this will give her the confidence boost she needs to get back into the swing of things a little bit.”
Sycamore tied the game in the top of the fifth with a pair of runs, but Morris was able to answer with a three-run fifth to retake the lead. The following inning, the Redskins added two more runs to give themselves the 7-2 cushion they ultimately lost in the seventh.
In extra innings, Morris pitcher Abby Burns took over. She rebounded from the five-run seventh to throw six hitless extra innings.
“(Abby) was a workhorse today. She listened to what we told her to do: She used her legs and took the strain off her arm and got the job done,” Lowery said of her freshman starter.
With Burns blanking Sycamore, Morris (18-7) threatened on multiple occasions, but it wasn’t until the 13th that they finally came through. With two outs, Morris was able to string together a pair of singles, setting the table for Alex Cook.
Cook’s fourth hit of the game plated the winning run, her third RBI of the day.