Butte High softball season ends in loss to Helena High

HELENA – The Butte High softball season ended Saturday with a 14-2 loss to Helena High in a Western AA Conference game.
The season-ender was played in Helena and the result relegated Butte High to seventh place in the final league seedings. The top six teams from Western AA advance to the state Class AA tournament Thursday through Saturday in Belgrade.
The game ended after four innings by run rule. Helena High finished the regular season with a 9-11 record, including a fourth-place 6-8 ledger in the conference.
The Bengals clubbed 13 hits in recording the victory, including a home run by senior shortstop Kylee Gardipee, triple by senior center fielder Katryn Seliskar and a double by senior pitcher Rylie Schlepp. Senior second baseman Ashley Koenig batted 3-for-3. Gardipee drove in five runs and Seliskar knocked in three. Schlepp plated a pair. Pitching, Schlepp held the Bulldogs to four hits and fanned seven batters. She walked one.
The Butte hits were a two-run double by sophomore second baseman Gracie Jonart and singles by senior third baseman Kamber Leary, sophomore right fielder Mattie Stepan and senior center fielder Dacelyn LaFond.
Helena High and Missoula Sentinel wound up tied in the regular-season league standings. A coin flip followed to determine fourth place, which Helena High won. The Bengals’ win in the coin flip advanced Kalispell Flathead into the No. 6 spot in the standings because the Bravettes own a win over Helena High, Butte High head coach Ryan Stosich said. A Sentinel win in the flip would have put Butte High in sixth place and gotten the Bulldogs to the state tourney on tie-breaker, Stosich said. Butte High finished listed at 7-14 for the season, 4-10 in the Western AA.
“It was pretty disappointing,” Stosich said about the loss of the game and losing a state bid. “Our team never coached and I’m proud to have coached (the Bulldogs).”
Butte High 000 2xx x – 2 4 2
Helena High 075 2xx x – 14 14 1
Ashlinn Mullaney and Gracie Ferriter. Rylie Schlepp and Kamryn Klemp. WW – Schlepp. L – Mullaney.
BUTTE HIGH (7-14, 4-10) – Gracie Ferriter 0-2, Ashlinn Mullaney 0-2, Kamber Leary 1-1, Madisyn Swanson 0-2, Mattie Stepan 1-2, Ashby Lee 0-2, Allie Becker 0-0, Gracie Jonart 1-2, Taylor Drakos 0-2, Dacelyn LaFond 1-1.
HELENA HIGH (9-11, 6-8) – Ashley Koenig 3-3, Katryn Seliskar 2-2, Kamryn Klemp 0-2, Kylee Gardipee 2-3, Faith Howard 1-3, Keira Campbell 2-3, Charlie Smith 0-3, Rylee Murgel 2-3, Rylie Schlepp 2-3, Dakota Lieberg 0-0, Haleigh Tavary 0-0.
Extra-base hits – 2B – Jonart, Schlepp. 3B – Seliskar. HR – Gardipee.
Runs batted in – Butte High 2 (Jonart 2), Helena High 13 (Gardipee 5, Koenig 3, Schlepp 2, Koenig 1, Howard 1, Campbell 1).

— Compiled by Bruce Sayler for buttesports.com