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After three games Saturday in the AA Softball Tournament in Russellville, New Bloomfield earned second place after losing in the championship game to Russellville 11-1.

The Lady Wildcats defeated Southern Boone 8-2 in six innings and Eugene 13-0 in five innings in their first two games.

Southern Boone (13-6) was a team New Bloomfield (10-7) lost to earlier in the season in August during tournament play in Hallsville. The Lady Wildcats took second place in that tournament as well, defeating Harrisburg and Van-Far but losing to the Lady Eagles 9-4.

This time, New Bloomfield were led by a shutdown pitching performance by senior Asya Nichols and 3-for-3, two-RBI games by No. 1-2 hitters Avery Nichols and Brooklynn Smith.

Asya Nichols pitched six innings of two-run ball with four hits, three strikeouts and one walk. The offense scored eight runs off Southern Boone's Paige Cruzan after scoring three times in the first meeting.

Following a low-scoring defensive 4-3 win Thursday against Eugene (7-9), New Bloomfield scored 13 runs on 16 hits while sophomore Peityn Thomas bounced back from her five-run, six-walk outing at Fatima with three walks, one hits and no runs in five innings against Eugene.

Asya Nichols had a 3-for-4 game along with freshman Macie Abbott, who drove in three runs, including  a two-run home run. Thomas drove in two runs, including one on a double, and senior Kamryn Herron went 2-for-3 with two RBI.

Russellville (16-3) had already defeated New Bloomfield 11-0 on Sept. 9 and scored 11 runs again to win the tournament. The Lady Wildcats were able to take an early 1-0 lead when the Lady Indians allowed a run to score on an error, but Russellville would jump ahead in the six runs in the third. Russellville's Claire Duenckel made the error that allowed the New Bloomfield run in the first but redeemed her self with a home run and a double to drive in runs in the third.

Asya Nichols allowed six runs in 2 innings while Thomas allowed five runs (four earned) in 1 innings. Senior Lelah Shikles went 2-for-2.

The Lady Wildcats committed four errors in the Russellvile game after only having one in each of the first two games.

"We are starting to put all the pieces together," head coach Dara Reinkemeyer said. "It was fun to watch them come together and play some very tough teams."

New Bloomfield will return home Tuesday for a 5 p.m. game against Father Tolton (9-8).

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