WINFIELD, Mo. – The Hannibal softball team was put in a deep hole after allowing four runs in the top of the seventh inning.
The Pirates nearly climbed out of it.
Fourth-seeded Hannibal scored three runs in the bottom of the frame and had the tying run at the plate, but fell in a 9-7 loss to fifth-seeded Winfield Wednesday afternoon in the Class 3 District 8 quarterfinals. Hannibal's season ends at 11-12, while Winfield advances to play top-seeded Wright City in the semifinals.
Winfield's lead was only 5-4 entering the seventh inning, but a fielder's choice made it a 6-4 game. The next batter followed with a two-run double, and that was followed by an RBI bunt single that pushed the lead to 9-4.
Hannibal didn't go quietly.
Taylor Simms led off the bottom half with a single, and she scored on Kylie McAfee's double. Emily Wilson followed with another double, which made it 9-6. After Maggie Woodside singled and Avery Lake struck out, Chloe Simms lifted a sacrifice fly to center to make it 9-7.
A groundout on the next at-bat ended the game.
Winfield led 2-0 after 2 ½ innings, but Hannibal tied the game in the bottom of the third on RBI singles by Adrya Nichelson and Alyssa Hart. Winfield, however, retook the lead with a three-run fourth inning that was highlighted by a two-run triple.
Sydney Hart's RBI single in the fourth cut the deficit to 5-3, and she added another RBI hit in the sixth to trim it to 5-4.
Hannibal couldn't get any closer.
The Pirates banged out 15 hits, as Sydney Hart had four. Chloe Simms had three while Taylor Simms and McAfee had two apiece.