By Anvil Welch
Globe Sports Writer
Webb City outlasted McDonald County 7-6 in 10 innings in the championship softball game of the MSHSAA Class 4 District 12 Tournament on Saturday.
The Cardinals, although outhit 16-9, were errorless in the field and finally subdued the equally determined Mustangs in the chill — mid-40s, a slight breeze and cloudy — at the Joplin Athletic Complex.
Said Webb City coach Walter Resa: “Both teams played with the heart of a champion. Neither team wanted to relinquish anything.”
Said McDonald County coach Tray Shaddox: “It was a great game. We battled. We congratulate coach Resa and the Cardinals. They came out ahead. They made a play or two and got a big hit when needed.
“I couldn’t be more proud of this group of players,” Shaddox said. “This, as much as it hurts, doesn’t diminish what they accomplished this season.”
Independent McDonald County, a former conference foe for Webb City, finished 20-4 with three of the losses to the Central Ozark Conference Large Division champion Cardinals.
The Cardinals won 1-0 in their first meeting this season, Resa said, before they exchanged high-scoring results.
“Throw out games 2 and 3. I didn’t expect 13 runs today,” Resa said. “I was expecting more like our first meeting. But neither team could shut down the other.
“We had different people step up at different times,” Resa said. “It was a total team effort.”
Said Shaddox: “The girls hit the ball. We couldn’t get enough of them.”
Webb City (23-4), which finished third in Class 4 in 2011, will entertain Ozark or Branson on Wednesday in the sectional round.
Webb City, seeded second to McDonald County, pushed across the winning run in the top of the 10th inning on a leadoff double by Emily Harris, a wild pitch and Samantha Gilstrap’s grounder.
The Mustangs, trailing 6-5, caught up in the bottom of the seventh inning on a single by Kali Hodson, a sacrifice by Kelsy Reynolds and a two-out double by Macey Jones.
Morgan Lammey’s two-run single had given the Cardinals a 6-5 lead in the seventh. A single by winning pitcher Kaitlin Beason, two wild pitches, a walk to Desirea Buerge and a stolen base preceded the safety by Lammey.
Beason and Asia Bemo each had two hits for the Cardinals.
McDonald County received three hits apiece from Cortni Smith and Ashton Harmon and two each from Hodson, Sierra Clay and Sarah Rickman.
Harmon, who belted a two-run home run, drove in three runs and Smith spanked a two-run triple.