Brookfield East senior pitcher Becky Hanson deserved a better fate.
Hanson allowed two runs on seven hits and a walk while fanning six, but still dropped a 2-1 decision to defending co-champion Menomonee Falls on April 3 at Willowood Park.
"I was especially pleased, because in the first inning, they had two singles to start the game," East coach Rich Anderson said. "Becky struck out the next hitter, but the ball got away and the hitter went to first.
"But then we got a pop-up to short, a strikeout and a weak grounder to third to get out of the inning."
The Spartans took a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning on a home run by Kelsey Smith, but the Indians tied it in the bottom of the inning.
Falls finally scored the winning run in the bottom of the seventh.
Justine Ertl tripled to lead off the inning; Hanson fanned the next hitter, but then with the outfield in, Brittany Robinson hit a long fly ball over the leftfielder's head to score the winning run.
Outside of Smith's homer and triple, Amanda Kalupa, East's other star hurler, singled and doubled to account for the Spartans hit total off Falls Nikki Festge, who fanned three in seven innings of work.
"It was a well-played game," Anderson said. "We lost Kelsey Kuehn when she hurt her ankle, so I was really proud the way we hung in there."
The Spartans (0-1) will head to Orlando, Fla., where they will play three games at Disney World during spring break before returning to face Wauwatosa East on April 17 at home.
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