Blair wins top 10 battle over Wayne, 8-4

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Two softball teams listed in the preseason Class B Top 10 by the Omaha World-Herald squared off Thursday at the Summer Sports Complex, with No. 9-ranked Blair outlasting 10th ranked Wayne, 8-4.
Blair scored two runs in the first inning and never trailed in the game, getting a pair of doubles off pitcher Hannah Belt to build their early lead.
Wayne got one run back in the first inning when Sidney Biggerstaff’s hot shot to the third baseman was mishandled and the throw was late, allowing Kennedy Maly to score after she led off the game with a single.  Wayne had two runners in scoring position, but were unable to bring either home.
Blair took control of the game with three runs in the third inning, then added three more in the fourth to make it 8-1. Wayne scored three in the bottom of the seventh when Maly hit a three-run homer to center field, scoring Ashten Gibson and Kiara Hochstein.
Annie Kniesche went 3-for-4 and Maly and Biggerstaff each had two hits as the 0-1 Blue Devils outhit the 1-0 Bears 10-9. Tori Kniesche added a double and Gibson and Hochstein both had hits. Belt took the loss, allowing five runs in three innings of work. Gibson struck out six in three innings of relief.
Wayne will host their own tournament on Saturday at the Summer Sports Complex. They open with a 9:30 a.m. game against Twin River, before playing Ord at 11:15 a.m. and Wahoo at 5 p.m.

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