The Marceline Tigers' softball team used an explosive five-run fifth inning to advance to 3-0 on Thursday evening, defeating La Plata 7-4 at home.
The Tigers trailed twice on Thursday, including allowing a run in the top of the first inning before responding with one of their own on a Baylee Jobson sacrifice fly in the bottom half.
La Plata's next three runs all came on balls put out of play. Marceline pitcher Maycee Edgar gave up a solo bomb in the fourth inning, and a two-run blast in the fifth, putting the Tigers down 4-1.
Marceline found its way out of a bases-loaded jam to end the top of that fifth inning before going to work and seizing control.
Jobson cracked the fifth inning open with a two-RBI triple before Jenna Elam did the same with two outs three batters later.
"I thought coming into the season, we could have a really good lineup, one through nine," Marceline coach Todd Lowther said, now in his 17th season. "The girls at the bottom part of the lineup set the tone for us. It says a little bit about our team in some of those tight spots."
From that point onward, no La Plata baserunner advanced into scoring position.
The Tigers finished the game with eight hits while leaving six runners stranded on the base paths. Edgar allowed 10 hits while striking out five and permitting no bases on balls. Abbey Kussman was the only Tiger with a multi-hit evening, finishing with a pair of singles and a double. The speedy centerfielder also recorded three steals.
The Tigers open their conference slate on Tuesday when they host Schuyler County.
"We didn't play our best, but obviously La Plata had something to do with that," Lowther admitted. "It may have been good for us. They're a much improved team, and they have some girls that can hit. We hadn't faced a lot of adversity yet this year."