WINSLOW — Paige Trask had herself a day.

The junior pitcher battled through one trying inning after another long enough to give herself a chance to come through late, drilling a two-run single to left-center field in the bottom of the sixth and helping Winslow to a 9-8 win over Gardiner at Laverdiere Field on Wednesday in a matchup of two of the best softball teams in Class B North.

“We need these games against good teams,” Trask said. “It’s nice to come out on top, but no matter what happens we just want to be playing at the end (of the season).”

Winslow (7-1) never trailed, scoring three times in the first to jump out to the early lead over Gardiner (6-2). The teams entered the day ranked fifth and seventh, respectively, in the regional standings.

The Tigers rallied with a pair of runs in the fifth inning to make it a 5-5 game, capping the middle innings that saw both sides repeatedly find ways to scratch out one or two runs at a time without being able to deliver a single crushing blow. Senior right fielder Meghan Meehan had the big hit in Gardiner’s fifth with a two-run single.

Winslow responded in a big way in the seventh, sending eight batters to the plate en route to a four-run frame that put the game just out of reach. All four runs came with two outs.

“We talk about being a veteran team, and we fight and we want to add on runs and add to leads,” Winslow coach Steve Bodge said. “When it counted the most, we scored all four of those runs with two outs.”

Trask finished with a 2 for 4 day at the dish that included four RBIs. Seven of the nine spots in the Black Raider lineup produced runs in a marathon game that came up 60 seconds shy of reaching the two and a half hour mark.

SIMPLE FORMULA: It wasn’t difficult to see where things went wrong for Gardiner, despite the Tigers making it interesting with three runs in the seventh to account for the final score.

Gardiner pitcher Jillian Bisson wasn’t her sharp self, the Tigers committed six errors behind her — including four in the fateful sixth — and the bottom half of the order failed to deliver consistently.

Bisson was touched for eight hits in her four innings of work. She didn’t walk anybody, but a tight strike zone made it difficult to nibble where she typically likes to work, Brochu said. Only three of the five runs she surrendered were earned.

“You can’t give up errors,” Gardiner coach Don Brochu said. “That’s the difference in that game.”

The bottom four in the Gardiner lineup went just 1 for 11 with a walk through the first six innings, striking out four times against Trask. They were also 0 for 4 with runners in scoring position.

BIG DAY: Trask may not have had her best stuff, but she did use all of the stuff that was available to her Wednesday.

“She’s got five pitches, and we used them all,” Bodge said. “We even used the kitchen sink. I told her at one point to start throwing it overhand just to try something different. You can’t get these guys out. They’re just too good. There’s nobody better than them at putting the ball in play.”

Trask went the distance, despite having only one 1-2-3 inning (the second). She limited Gardiner to just three earned runs on 11 hits.

“They’re a good hitting team,” Trask said. “It was definitely a grind out there. We had to do whatever we could to stop them.”

However difficult her life in the circle was, Trask didn’t take it to the plate with her. She had her stroke against both Bisson and reliever Maggie Bell, touching them both for two-run hits.

“For all of us, it’s pretty much the first good pitch you see just hit it as hard as you can,” Trask said.

LAST GASP: Three straight Tiger batters drove in runs in the seventh to make it a 9-8 game and set the stage for what would have been a dramatic comeback.

Bisson reached to put runners at second and third with two outs, representing the tying and go-ahead runs, but Trask got Logan Granholm to pop out to shortstop Sarah Guimond to end the game.

STAT SHEET: Guimond went 4 for 4 with a double and a stolen base out of the leadoff spot for the Black Raiders. … Left fielder Bailey Robbins was 2 for 3 with a double off and three runs scored. … Bisson and Jazmin Clary each went 2 for 4 for Gardiner. … Bell was 2 for 3 with a double and an RBI.

UP NEXT: Gardiner heads back on the road to face Medomak Valley on Friday afternoon, while Winslow travels to Lawrence. Both Medomak and Lawrence are 4-4.

Travis Barrett — 621-5621

[email protected]

Twitter: @TBarrettGWC