If Thursday’s Game 1of the Class 5A area-round series between Mansfield Timberview and Flower Mound Marcus was any indication, it will be an arms race to the finish line.
Timberview scratched out two runs off mistakes to take a 2-0 victory at Brewer High School.
The Timberwolves (24-4) lead the series 1-0 and will face Marcus (25-5) in Game 2 at 7:15 p.m. Friday back at Brewer.
“We knew this was going to be a tough series; that’s two of the best pitchers in the state going head-to-head,” Timberview coach Donya Mooney said. “We knew we needed to just get the ball in play and see what happened.”
What happened was two errors in the fourth inning that proved the difference.
Marcus pitcher Hannah Null struck out 11 of the 24 batters she faced and scattered three hits.
But after allowing a double by Timberview pitcher Mariah Denson (22-2), Null got some bad luck when Maddie Munoz hit a routine grounder.
A throwing error allowed Denson to score the first run and another ill-advised throw gave Munoz a free run to the plate.
Null threw 80 pitches, with 55 of them strikes in comparison to Denson, who struck out seven to get the win.
Denson also threw 80 pitches, with 50 of them strikes.
Weather didn’t seem to bother either pitcher as temperatures dipped unseasonably low.
“I was just trying to think about being hot,” Denson said. “I was relaxed the whole game and not bothered much. I knew I had a great defense behind me.”
Mooney said she was glad to get Game 1 in the books and that weather didn’t derail how the series was set up.
“I felt like my kids were ready to play,” she said. “I felt like this could possibly go three games, and I really thought we would get our best effort playing on three individual days and not back-to-back on Saturday.”
Marcus had only three hits, with just one runner advancing to second on a sacrifice.
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