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Packer softball team impresses in loss to Rockets

The Austin softball team saved its best regular season for last, and although the Packers lost 7-6 to Rochester John Marshall, they showed they are capable of competing in Todd Park Tuesday.

The Rockets (14-6 overall) took the lead for good in the top of the seventh inning when Kate Novak doubled in a run to make it a 7-6 game. That deficit could’ve been bigger, but Austin senior Madisyn Busker made a running catch in center field before throwing home to turn a double play and end the frame. Busker opened the bottom of the seventh with a single to right field, but she was stranded as the next three Austin hitters went down in order.

“I was super excited and I was super shocked (on the double play),” Busker said. “It was good to see everybody on the team excited today. We know we can do it now and we are proud of ourselves.”

Austin (0-19 overall) took a 6-3 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning when Avery Wempner, Alia Retterath, Kate Holtz and Kathryn Crouch all delivered an RBI. But that was the last time the Packers would score as the team stranded three base runners over the final three innings.

“I’m proud of the team,” Austin head coach Lisa Lage said. “Everyone hit and Abby Van Pelt had her best game of the season in the circle. They now have a taste of what it’s like to hold a lead and feel that energy.”

JM 0 1 0  2 3 0  1  —  7  9    1

Austin 2 0 0  4 0 0  0  —  6  11  2

Austin pitching: Abby VanPelt (L) 7 IP, 9 H, 2 BB, 7 R, 6 ER, 4 K

Austin hitting: Kate Holtz, 3-for-4, double, RBI, R; Kathryn Couch, 1-for-4, RBI; Isabel Stark, 0-for-4; Madisyn Busker, 2-for-4, RBI, R; Maddie Herrick, 2-for-4, R; Lucy Lagervall, 1-for-4, double; VanPelt, 2-for-3, R, BB; Avery Wempner, 0-for-2, RBI, R, BB; Alia Retterath, 0-for-2, RBI; Payton Squier, 0-for-1