Robert Perea, The Fernley Reporter
A 5-run seventh inning rally by Elko last Friday is all that stood between the Fernley softball team and an undefeated Northern 3A record.
But despite suffering their only loss of the league season, the Vaqueros are still the top seed for the 3A Northern League Tournament this week in Elko.
The Vaqueros finished the league season with a 17-1 record, and will get a first-round bye in the 6-team, double-elimination tournament. Fernley will play the winner of the first-round game between No. 4 Elko and No. 5 Dayton Thursday at 2 p.m. Lowry, the No. 2 seed, will face the winner of the game between No. 3 Fallon and No. 6 Spring Creek.
The Vaqueros split two games at Elko last week to finish the regular season.
In the first game of the series Friday, the Vaqueros broke a 2-2 tie with four runs in the top of the seventh inning. Macie Kirk and Reese Jones and Aschlynn Remer hit consecutive doubles to take a 4-2 lead, then McKenna Montgomery blasted a two-run homer to make it 6-2.
But Elko scored twice with two outs, leading to a 3-run walk-off home run by Kaitlyn Rizo.
Saturday, the Vaqueros finished the regular season in dominating fashion behind a 3-hitter by Montgomery to beat the Indians 10-0 in 6 innings.
Macie Kirk hit a solo home run for the Vaqueros, Katelyn Bunyard hit a 2-run single in the fifth inning as the Vaqueros stretched the edge to 6-0. In the sixth inning, Olivia Victor hit a two-run single as part of a 4-run rally to put the game away.