The Lady Panthers had their hitting shoes on to start the week as they produced 13 hits and 11 runs against conference rival Edwardsville.
They need all of them as they were able to outlast the Tigers in an 11-8 slugfest. Addison Barnouski returned to the pitcher’s circle after battling injury and recorded the win. The senior Panther also did her part at the plate, going 2-for-3 at the plate including a home run.
Ginger Huskey was a perfect 3-for-3, and Nikole Patterson added two base hits in four trips to the plate.
The OTHS girls touched Edwardsville starter Isabella Holtrop for a pair of runs in both the first and second innings. The early scoring was just a prelim to the pivotal fourth inning when the Lady Panthers sent nine batters to the plate and scored five times to expand their lead to 9-1.
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Edwardsville was down but not quite out, however. The Tigers pounced on Barnouski for six sixth inning runs. The O’Fallon girls answered the late-inning challenge with two additional runs in their half of the sixth to secure the win.
Belleville West 7, O’Fallon 5
Addison Barnouski’s 3-run homer was not enough offense for O’Fallon in the Lady Panthers’ final regular season game. Barnouski’s circuit clout broke a 1-1 tie in the third inning, but the Maroon’s answered with two runs off OTHS starter Katie Moore in the bottom of the frame. Two additional Belleville West runs in the fourth put the Maroons ahead for good.
Offensive leaders for O’Fallon were Barnouski, Courtney Keller ( 2-for-3 with a double), Katie Moore (2-for-4) and Allison Underwood (2-for-4).
The Lady Panthers were scheduled to begin IHSA regional tournament play on Tuesday of this week versus Belleville West in the Collinsville Regional. The regional final is set for this Friday, May 27 at 4:30 against the winner of the Alton-Collinsville semi-final.