McKinney North’s softball team will get a second chance at upsetting the fifth-ranked Class 5A team in the state when it faces Plano at 9 a.m. Thursday at North in the opening round of the MISD Invitational. On Tuesday, the Bulldogs (3-3-1) overcame a 5-1 deficit and had the winning run on base in the bottom of the seventh before the Wildcats (10-0) snuffed the rally and held on, 6-5.
Plano outhit North, 16-8, but the Bulldogs had two runners aboard and no one out to start the bottom of the last inning. Ashleigh Ahlborn and Kayla Carpentier led off with consecutive singles, but a pop-up on a sacrifice bunt attempt resulted in a double play, as Carpentier could not get back to first base in time.
After Taylor McAllister walked, Faith Dixon drove in Ahlborn with a line-drive double to left, and McAllister raced to third on the play. She was stranded on Celeste Verdolivo’s groundout to third, ending the game.
Plano broke out in the top of the first, pushing across three runs on six hits. North responded with a run in the bottom of the inning. Carpentier led off with a double and later scored on McAllister’s groundout. The Wildcats added two runs in the third and one in the fifth.
The Bulldogs pulled closer in the bottom of the fifth. McAllister’s hard single to left scored Chandler Johnson and Dixon’s single brought home two more runners.
Dixon finished with two hits and three RBI to lead North. Plano starter Cali Irvin drove in two runs on two hits and registered the win, scattering eight hits and striking out four.
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