Old school ruled on Tuesday afternoon.
Lawrence High run-ruled Free State twice in a Sunflower League softball doubleheader sweep to spoil the Firebirds' Senior Day at the FSHS field. The Lions won 10-0 in six innings and 12-2 in five.
"I thought it was going to be closer," said LHS coach Reenie Stogsdill, whose Lions improved to 7-11 this season and 7-1 all time against Free State. "Free State always plays well against us and they get up for this game. They struggled with pitching today, and that's tough for a team when they have walks. That hurt them today and we took advantage of that."
The Firebird pitchers combined to throw 15 walks. Of those bases on balls, 10 resulted in LHS runs.
"It's very frustrating," said FSHS coach Pam Pine, whose Firebirds dipped to 1-15 with their 15th consecutive loss. "We're kind of hurting in the pitching area."
In the first game, LHS banged 12 hits. Shortstop Jenni Morrell had three hits to lead the Lions in the opener. Catcher Jennifer Narcomey and left fielder Haley Bowlin had two hits apiece.
LHS led 3-0 before erupting for six runs on four hits in the top of the fifth. Key hits were two-run singles by Morrell and Narcomey. First baseman Rachel Paradies also clubbed an RBI double.
Paradies was looking forward to the city showdown.
"I didn't want us to come in and be all cocky about it," said Paradies, who was 2-for-5 with five RBIs, a double and triple in the twinbill. "I told the girls before the game to be aggressive with the bats and tough on defense."
LHS juniors Ashley Burnett and Larissa Johnson were tough on the mound. Burnett won the first game with a five-hitter. She struck out six and walked none in six innings.
"She pitched pretty well today," Stogsdill said of her ace. "She was getting most of them with her fastballs and hitting her spots."
Johnson surrendered eight hits, including five in the bottom of the fifth when Free State scored its two runs.
"It's hard for us when we get down early," Pine said. "We become more tentative instead of being more aggressive."
LHS managed just four hits in the second game, but capitalized on 10 walks and three errors. Bowlin, who went 4-for-7 with three RBIs and two triples in the twinbill, had two of the Lions' hits in the second game.
"We came out ready to play," Stogsdill said. "We didn't mess around. We came to take care of business. We could have done a better job running the bases, and that's going to hurt us in the future if we do that."
In the second game, Free State was led by freshman Lauren Abney, who went 3-for-3. Junior Kasey Asher contributed two hits in that game. Sophomore Meika Potter drove in both runs with a single.
FSHS seniors Ann Leiker, Sara Katich and Caitlin Wisler were recognized between games. Katich and Wisler been a part of Firebird softball every year since the school opened four years ago.
The Firebirds will play a makeup doubleheader today at Shawnee Mission East before returning home on Thursday for their finale against Olathe East.
LHS, which has won three in a row for its longest streak of the season, will end the regular season on Thursday with a makeup doubleheader at 4:15 p.m. against defending state champion Shawnee Mission Northwest at Holcom Park. Paradies is the lone senior on the Lions and will be recognized before the finale.
LHS 10, FSHS 0
LHS 12, FSHS 2