NEWPORT — Winslow and Nokomis entered Friday afternoon’s softball game from distinctly different directions. They met in the middle, in a wild battle that seemed to go 10 different ways before being decided on the final batter.

Winslow looked unbeatable over its first four games, scoring 94 runs and allowing four. Nokomis, meanwhile, struck out 16 times while being no-hit by Gardiner’s Kristal Smith on Wednesday.

Winslow brought its bats again, but left 12 runners on base and gave away too many runs on defense, and Nokomis held on for the 10-9 upset victory.

“We had a lot of luck involved in that game,” Nokomis coach J.D. McLellan said. “We know we did. We kept runnin’ and playin’, and everybody seemed to contribute.”

Nokomis (2-2) was in 14th place in the Eastern B Heal points entering the day, but had moved up to fifth by the evening. Winslow (4-1) committed eight errors in its first loss of the season.

“Things fell apart there a little bit, and it is what it is,” Winslow coach Steve Bodge said. “What are you going to do?”

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The Black Raiders led 1-0, but Nokomis scored two runs in the bottom of the second inning on a single by Mikayla Charters and three Winslow errors. The Raiders shook that off and went ahead 3-2 when Hillary Libby tripled home Jenna Petrovic and scored on a groundout by Hannah Doble. By the fourth inning, Winslow led 5-2, as two runs scored on a two-out Nokomis error.

It seemed like a familiar pattern, but the Warriors charged back again. Emily Randall reached on an error, then barely slid under the tag of Winslow catcher Paige Veilleux on Sabrina Champluvier’s RBI triple. Shannon Kasprzak then put on a softball clinic, drawing the third baseman in by showing bunt, and then ripping a single past her to drive in a run.

“I think we played better as a team today,” Nokomis pitcher Libby Dunivan said. “We didn’t get down on ourselves when we got down. We fought back.”

Winslow bumped its lead to 6-4 in the fifth on a bases-loaded walk by Paige Veilleux, but the Raiders left the bases loaded for the second time in the game. The payback for that came in a brutal bottom of the fifth.

Nokomis scored six runs in the inning on one hit — a double by Dunivan with one out and the bases empty. Add in a hit batsman, three walks and four Winslow errors, and the inning got away from the Raiders.

But after leaving two runners on in the sixth, Winslow sprung back to life in the seventh. Kiana Richards started the inning off with a single, and Liz Pullen doubled her home and went to third on an error. Veilleux walked for the fourth time, and Hayley Pottle singled two runs home. When Brooke Haskell followed with a single to center field, the Raiders were down 10-9 and had the go-ahead run on first with nobody out.

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Dunivan bore down, getting the next two batters on a soft lineout and a groundout. With two down, Doble grounded one toward the right side, but Haskell had no chance to get out of the way and the ball hit her foot for an automatic out to end the game.

“This is a really big win,” Dunivan said. “It’s a great confidence booster. They’re a good team, so I think that’ll help us a lot in the long run.”

For Winslow, Monday’s matchup with Gardiner is still a highly-anticipated one. But now part of the anticipation is seeing how the Raiders respond to their first loss.

“I’d like to see if we bounce back, obviously,” Bodge said. “They’re going to be tough. I’m anxious to try to hit against Kristal. We came out and scored nine runs (today). You play any defense at all, you’re supposed to win with nine runs. You make that many errors against good teams, you should get beat. No doubt about it.”

Matt DiFilippo — 861-9243

[email protected]

Twitter: @Matt_DiFilippo


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