Riverton softball players Cheyanne Dahl and Sarah Linford knew what it was like to get close this season, but on Thursday the two felt a brand new sensation.
Each hit their first home run of the season to pull the Silverwolves (9-5, 5-1 in 5A’s Region 4) out of a deficit and into a tie with visiting Herriman (9-5, 3-2). Ultimately, Dahl’s and Linford’s fence-clearing blows helped Riverton beat the Mustangs 5-4 in eight innings.
The win was an immediate revenge of sorts as Herriman had beaten Riverton 3-2 on Tuesday.
"She pitched it and there was the pop of the bat, which sent it over — it was nice," said Linford, whose two-run dinger in the bottom of the eighth off Mustangs pitcher Riley Cox tied the game at 4-4.
"She’s hit the very top of the fence about five or six times — line drives into the fence and the top of it," Riverton coach Brooke Olson said.
One inning earlier, Dahl had tied the game at 2-2 by smacking a hard solo shot over the right-centerfield fence. A transfer to the 5A school from 2A Summit Academy, Dahl also hit her first homer of the season.
The senior also pitched the last four innings of the victory.
"I came close a couple of times. This one felt good," Dahl said. "I feel like I’ve got good momentum and I can keep up with the 5A."
After Linford’s blast in the eighth inning to tie, the winning run came after Riverton loaded the bases on a single by Jennica Hogue and two walks. Then, a drive by Ashlynn Petersen to deep left-center was misplayed and Hogue came in to score.
Herriman grabbed a two-run lead after Ashlyn Visser hit a solo home run in the second and another run scored in the third as the result of a pair of Riverton errors. The Silverwolves got one back in the fifth when an infield hit by Linford scored Peterson.
After the game went into extra innings, the Mustangs went back up thanks to a two-run double by Hayley Childs.
"We just came up from 4A. My kids are fighters and I have all the confidence in them, but it just didn’t go our way," Herriman coach Staci Hemingway said. "Riverton and Herriman are such big rivals. I wish we could play them back-to-back again. We played them on Tuesday and it was a little bit better but it was also a battle."
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