Golden Girls win national title

HAYS, Kan. — The Norfolk Golden Girls 18U won their final three games on Saturday to come out as champions of the Class B USSSA national tournament.

They beat Fastpitch Futures FFS Gold 7-3, then beat Slammers Untouchables-Hooters 1-0 and 9-2. The Golden Girls went 5-0 in bracket play to secure the title.

Futures took a 3-2 lead over Norfolk into the bottom of the third, but a sacrifice fly by Ava Borgman scored two runs and gave Norfolk a one-run lead. Addison Duranski added a three-run home run in the bottom of the fifth for good measure.

Tara Koch pitched five innings allowing three runs — no earned — on five hits while striking out and walking two.

The Slammers and Golden Girls held each other scoreless in their first game. That was until the bottom of the fifth, when Duranski singled home Hannah Renner with the game’s only run.

In the second and final game, the Golden Girls broke things open with six runs in the bottom of the second. Big hits included singles by Cydnee Hopkins and Hannah Renner, as well as a home run by Duranski.

Stachura and Rebecca Hazlett added RBI singles for insurance in the fourth.

In the final two games, Stachura combined to throw 10 innings, allowing two runs on five hits and striking out six. The performances were enough to net her the award for most valuable pitcher in the tournament.

The Norfolk Golden Girls end their season with a 40-4-2 record.

Norfolk second at national

HAYS, Kan. — The Norfolk Golden Girls Severance 16U ended their season as national finalists on Saturday. They won their first six games to start the tournament but lost both championship games to the Kansas Blue Sox 11-6 and 10-0.

Norfolk went 3-0 in pool play, outscoring opponents 35-5, including a shutout of the Wheat Ridge Cardinals in the second game. It kept things rolling in bracket play with three dominating wins to come out of the winners bracket. It beat Kansas Nitro 12-2, Tigers Softball 10-3 and the Lady Storm 11-1.

All that stood between it and a title was the Blue Sox, who came out of the losers bracket and needed to win both games to claim the title.

In the first game, the teams were tied at 6 after three innings, but the Blue Sox put up a four -spot in the top of the fourth that the Golden Girls couldn’t answer.

In the second game, the Blue Sox held Norfolk to just two hits while putting up four runs in the first and third innings to take home a national championship.

Ryanne Pitsulka and Jessica Schmidt each took a loss in the championship games.

The Norfolk Golden Girls finish their season 34-17-2.

Track and Field

Shaw named top senior athlete

SEWARD — Rock County alumna and former North Central star Addie Shaw was named the Female Senior Athlete of the Year by Concordia University on Friday.

Shaw has put herself in the conversation as one of the top throwers in school history. The native of Bassett, spent five years inside the program. This past outdoor season, Shaw concluded her collegiate career by recording two more GPAC individual titles and three more All-America awards. On the program’s all-time indoor lists, Shaw ranks first in the weight throw (64 feet, 4 inches) and second in the shot put. On the school all-time outdoor lists, Shaw sits second in the discus, fourth in the hammer throw and fourth in the shot put.

Shaw achieved NAIA national titles in the discus in 2018 and 2019 and was a three-time NAIA national runner-up finisher. Her career tallies include 11 All-America awards, four individual GPAC championships and 17 all-conference awards. She’s also a four-time NAIA National Field Athlete of the Week and earned two NAIA Midwest Region Field Athlete of the Year accolades from the USTFCCCA. Shaw qualified for eight separate national championship meets, helping her teams to seven NAIA top 10 national finishes.

In other news

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OMAHA — The Norfolk High football team traveled to Omaha, entering the game against the Omaha Benson Bunnies on a three-game losing streak in search of its first victory in September, which is what they found in the 24-0 win on Friday.