McNary’s Kate Ronning gets a base hit in a game against Tigard earlier this season (KEIZERTIMES/Matt Rawlings).
The McNary softball team competed in the Jesuit/Mountainside Tournament in Beaverton over spring break, where they played four games in the span of just two days.
The Celtics finished the tournament with a 3-1 record and had double-digit run totals in all three of their victories.
“We went into that tournament refocused,” McNary head coach Kevin Wise said. “We had some really good offensive games.”
Game 1: McNary 16 Century 5 (Monday, March 25).
The Celtics racked up an incredible 17 hits in this one as they run-ruled Century 16-5 in the opening game of the tournament.
Eight of the nine players in the McNary lineup had multiple hits for the game. Taylor Ebbs led the Celtics with a 3-for-3 game and knocked in four runs.
Alexa Cepeda also had a big game with two doubles and three RBIs.
In McNary’s first six games of the season, senior pitcher Faith Danner had been the only one who saw time in the circle.
But in this game, freshman right-hander Hannah Ebner made her first appearance on the mound for the Celtics.
In five innings of work, Ebner surrendered seven hits and five runs while striking out two, earning her first win of her high school career.
“Having a great other pitcher that we can throw out there is invaluable,” Wise said. “If she was nervous, she sure didn’t show it because she went out there and did her job.”
At the plate, Ebner was 2-for-4 with a pair of RBIs.
Game 2: Mountainside 6 McNary 0 (Monday, March 25).
McNary couldn’t recapture their offensive magic from game one as they fell to Mountainside.
It was the second time they had been shutout this season.
“It took us a few innings to adjust to their pitcher, and I think by that time we just had too big of a hole to climb out of,” Wise said.
Danner threw a scoreless frame in the top of the first, but a pair of errors by the McNary defense allowed Mountainside to push two across in the second inning.
Mountainside broke the game open in the top of the third with three runs, extending their lead to 5-0.
McNary’s best chance to get back into the game came in the bottom of the fifth. Danner started the inning with a single to right field. The next batter, Shaylee Custer, doubled down the right field line.
But Ellie Martin, who was pinch running for Danner, was thrown out trying to score from first on the play, which ended up being a rally killer for the Celtics.
Game 3: McNary 17 Roosevelt 5 (Tuesday, March 26).
The Celtics put up crooked numbers in the first four innings of play, scoring 17 unanswered runs to cruise to the easy win.
While it was a monumental game for the entire McNary offense, it was an especially incredible day for Ebbs.
The sophomore went 4-for-4 with eight RBIs and hit two three-run homers to lead the Celtics to a lopsided victory.
Cepeda, along with Abbi Covalt and Kayelee Schwab, each had an extra-base hit in the win.
“The girls came out on fire that day,” Wise said.
Danner got her fourth win of the season in the circle, surrendering seven hits and five runs in five innings.
Game 4: McNary 11 Grant 1 (Tuesday, March 26).
A five-run first inning propelled McNary to an early lead and they never looked back, defeating Grant 11-1 and getting their third run-rule victory of the tournament.
Covalt and Ebner each went 3-for-3 with two RBIs while Cepeda continued her hot streak at the plate with a 4-for-4 performance.
Ebner outdid herself in her second start in the circle for the Celtics, going five innings without giving up an earned run.
Back-to-back doubles by Cepeda and Kate Ronning put McNary on top 1-0 with nobody out in the bottom of the first.
Ebbs then followed with an RBI-single to center field to score Ronning from second.
Moments later, a two-run single from Ebner extended McNary’s lead to 4-0.
The Celtics would score one more run in the first inning, then push three more across in the bottom of the second to take a commanding 8-0 advantage.