The Soldotna softball team defeated Kenai Central 15-4 in four innings in nonconference action on Monday in Kenai.
The Stars improved to 9-10 overall while the Kardinals dropped to 4-7 overall.
The decisive inning was the top of the third, when the Stars sent 15 batters to the plate in the process of scoring 11 runs.
"Kenai has improved a lot since we played them at the beginning of the season," Soldotna coach Dave Cleveland said. "They're playing good ball."
So is Soldotna's Savannah Hegge.
"Savannah's throwing it pretty good right now," Cleveland said.
Hegge pitched the first two innings of the game and allowed just one hit while striking out three. However, the Kardinals were right with the Stars, as the only run Soldotna scored in the first two innings against starter Alysha Shaginoff was unearned. In the top of the first, Alyssa Kress reached on a walk and scored on an error.
In the top of the third, Shaginoff and reliever Mollie Cox combined to walk five batters and hit a pair of batters. The Kards also had three costly errors in the inning.
Soldotna tacked on two more runs in the top of the fourth to push the score to 15-0, but Kenai did not give up. The Kards got to SoHi reliever Lacey Norman for four runs -- just one earned -- in the fourth to nearly avoid the fate of the 10-run rule.
On offense for Soldotna, Hegge finished 3-for-4 with two runs and three RBIs, while Kress and Mariah Darrow each scored three runs and Brittnie Thayer and Maddie Tice had two runs.
"I'm just happy with the way we played," Cleveland said. "We played at our level."
The Kardinals host Skyview on Wednesday at 5 p.m. The Stars and Panthers will play at the Soldotna Little League fields on Thursday at 3 p.m.
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