Kamiakin was three outs away from missing its goal of consecutive state fastpitch championships.
Then the hits came. And came.
When the rally was over, the Braves of Kennewick had more than batted through their order, collecting nine hits and ultimately, another title.
Kamiakin overcame a two-run deficit Saturday, scoring seven runs in the seventh inning to repeat as the Class 3A state champion with a 12-7 victory over Prairie of Brush Prairie at the Regional Athletic Complex in Lacey.
“This team has battled all season,” Kamiakin coach Tim Bisson said. “We’ve battled injuries. We’ve battled pitching changes. We’ve battled youth. But they just never gave up. They are the epitome of the word team. We’re 20 strong.”
And all seemed to get a hit in the seventh, including Melanie Oord, who had two singles and two RBI in the inning.
“Hits are contagious,” said Braves junior Carlie Richards, whose two-run single tied the score at 7. “Everyone just wanted to keep stringing hits together.”
Kamiakin (20-7) needed the barrage of hits after the Falcons erased a 5-2 deficit by scoring five runs in the bottom of the sixth.
Prairie’s Taylor Bussey highlighted the Falcons’ big inning with a three-run triple.
The Braves opened the seventh with four consecutive singles before Richards, Oord, Hunter Schneitter, Jessica Edminster and Sam Booth drove in runs.
Prairie (22-8), which overcame a six-run deficit to defeat University High of Spokane Valley, 10-9, in the semifinals, got the potential tying run up to bat in the seventh, but the Falcons were unable to pull off another rally.
Kamiakin is the first team to win back-to-back Class 3A state titles since Kennedy in 2007-08.
Meadowdale 7, University 2: The Mavericks of Lynnwood jumped on the Titans early and used a big fourth inning to secure the third-place trophy.
Meadowdale scored two runs in the first and five runs in the fourth for a 7-0 advantage.
University scored its runs in the top of the seventh.
The Titans earned their second trophy in school history and the first since they won the Class 4A state title in 2003.
Meadowdale, which lost to Kamiakin, 2-1, in the semifinals, matched its highest state finish. The Mavericks also placed third in 1997. preps.theolympian.com