Bulldogs tame Bengals, fall to Bruins

Butte High’s home opener Friday for girls’ softball saw mixed results and so-so weather at Stodden Park.
The Bulldogs beat Helena High 12-1 in a 10-run rule decider at the bottom of the sixth inning, then lost 5-1 to Helena Capital in a pair of non-conference Class AA games. The weather included warm sunshine, but also blustering winds. For early April in Butte, it wasn’t too bad.
“I was happy overall with today,” Butte High veteran head coach Steve Stosich said. “I was really happy with the first game.
The Bulldogs ripped 15 hits, including eight doubles and a home run, in the victory over Helena High while showing strong power at the plate. Bobbie Osterman slugged the homer, and Maria Michelotti and Bethany McLean clubbed three doubles apiece. Jessica Robertson struck out nine batters and walked two. She scattered seven hits.
“In the second game, we suffered a breakdown in the fifth inning,” Stosich said, referring to Capital’s four-run frame that spelled the difference. “We had had opportunities with our Nos. 2, 3 and four hitters coming up to hit. So, even though we fell down one inning, we still gave ourselves some opportunities to win the game. “
The four-run eruption by the Bruins shattered a 1-1 deadlock.
The next Butte High games will be Eastern AA Conference counters and are scheduled for April 18 and 19, against Billings Skyview and Billings Senior, respectively, at Stodden Park.
“Even with the 5-1 loss, I was happy with their effort,” Stosich said of the Bulldogs. ”Helena Capital made some nice plays. We had some good plays and we hit well today. It gave us a chance to pitch Jessica more than one game “
Robertson turned in a credible performance against theBruins, though likely wearing some fatigue from the complete game against the Bengals. Her stats versus Capital included seven strikeouts, two walks and yielding four hits in five innings.
The Bulldogs are 2-2 in full games this season after going 3-1 in an exhibition tournament in Great Falls opening weekend.

Butte High 12, Helena High 1
The Bulldogs gave up a first-inning run as Erin Emanuel singled home Taryn Holland who had knocked a single, then continued to second base on an outfield error.
Butte High tied the score in its half of the inning as Ashten McCloskey reached on an error, stole second base and scored on a Michelotti single to center field. Osterman untied the score with a drive over the center-field fence with Michelotti aboard via a ground-rule double.
The Bulldogs scored three times in the fourth inning. Amanda Spear drove in Ashton LaFond with a two-out single to right. LaFond had singled to center. Michelotti doubled to right and she and Spear both rode home on a ground-rule double to left by Baylee Thatcher.
Justyce Connole walked to lead off the Bute High half of the fifth inning and came home when LaFond’s flyball was dropped in the outfield. The Bulldogs ended the game with five runs plated in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Michelotti started it with a double and then Thatcher reached on an error. Osterman singled home Michelotti. One out later, McLean doubled home two runs. After the second out, Kendall Alley was hit by a pitch an McCloskey walked to load the bases, setting the table for a ground-rule double by Spear that ended the game.

Helena High 100 000 x — 1 7 2
Butte High 102 315 x — 12 15 1
Terra Gilchrist and Jordan Hinman. Jessica Robertson and Maria Michelotti. W — Robertson (2-1). L — Gilchrist.
HELENA HIGH — Emma Meredith 1-3, Ashley Nash 0-3, Taryn Holland 2-3, Erin Emanuel 1-3, Terra Gilchrist 0-0, Jess Giard 0-2, Anna Fischer 1-2, Jordan Hinman 1-2, Mickey Edgar 1-3, Lacey Lindenfield 0-2, Hanna Kroll 0-1.
BUTTE HIGH (2-1) — Ashten McCloskey 0-2, Morgan Bagley 0-1, Amanda Spear 2-5, Maria Michelotti 4-4, Baylee Thatcher 1-4, Bobbie Osterman 3-4, Justyce Connole 1-3, Bethany McLean 3-4, Ashton LaFond 1-4, Kendall Alley 0-3.
Extra-base hits — 2B — Spear, Michelotti 3, Thatcher, Osterman, McLean 3. HR — Osterman.
RBIs — Emanuel 1; Spear 3, Osterman 3, McLean 2, Thatcher 2, Michelotti 1.

Helena Capital 5, Butte High 1
The game was tight through four innings. The Bruins went ahead 1-0 in the top of the3 third inning as Emily Hill beat out an infield hit and erased on a fielder’s choice hit into by by Shelby VanHemelryck before a Brittany Hogan groundout eventually delivered VanHemelryck after a steal and passed ball. The Bulldogs pulled even in their half of the inning. Justyce Connole walked and Morgan Bagley put down a bunt single. Ashton LaFond then singled Connole home. Capital pitcher Brittany Smith then, however, retired the next three Butte High hitters in order on groundouts.
The Bruins surged in the fifth with their decisive inning, aided by a Butte High error. VanHemelryck walked to start the inning. One out later, Destry McNellis singled and then Sydney Ladas laced a run-scoring douible. McKenzie Johnston followed with a double that scored McNellis. After another out, Smith lofted a flyball to the outfield that was dropped, allowing two more runs to tally before the third out was recorded.
Butte High missed a good scoring opportunity in the fourth inning when Bobbie Osterman and Bethany McLean both singled and moved to scoring position on a McCloskey sacrifice bunt. However, the next two batters were cut down on strikes and a grounder.
McCloskey started the Bulldog seventh with an infield hit, but was left stranded when Smith set the next three batters down on a flyball to center, come backer and on a popup to the infield.
Osterman pitched two innings of hitless relief.

Helena Capital 001 040 0 — 5 4 0
Butte High 001 000 0 — 1 7 1
Brittany Smith and Megan Fitzpatrick. Jessica Robertson, Bobbie Osterman (6) and Maria Michelotti. W — Smith. L — Robertson (2-2).
HELENA CAPITAL — Destry McNellis 1-4, Sydney Ladas 1-4, McKenzie Johnston 1-3, Megan Fitzpatrick 0-3, Brittany Smith 0-3, Kady Bartsch 0-2, Madi Quick 0-0, Emily Hill 1-3, Shelby VanHemelryck 0-2, Brittany Hogan 0-2.
BUTTE HIGH (2-2) — Ashton LaFond 2-4, Amanda Spear 0-3, Kendall Alley 0-0, Maria Michelotti 1-3, Baylee Thatcher 0-3, Bobbie Osterman 1-3, Bethany McLean 1-3, Ashten McCloskey 1-2, Justyce Connole 0-2, Morgan Bagley 1-2.
Extra-base hits — Ladas, Michelotti.
RBIs — Ladas 1, Johnston 1, Hogan 1; LaFond 1.

Click here to buy photos by Jason Silvernale.

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