Republic hit five home runs but committed seven errors in a 14-12 loss to Ozark on Senior Night Tuesday. The teams combined for 31 base hits in a wild game that was decided by a three-run Ozark rally in the top of the seventh inning.
Republic entered the game needing just one home run to tie the school record for homers in a season, 26. The Lady Tigers hit three home runs in the first inning: one by Julia Higgins, one by A.J. Fenske, and one by Avery Romans. Higgins and Fenske both homered again later in the game, bringing the team total for the season to 30. The five home runs also tied the RHS single-game record, set in 2014 against Cassville.
But after building a 7-1 lead, Republic couldn’t hold on. Ozark struck back with four-run rallies in the second and third inning to take a 9-7 lead. Republic tied the game with single tallies in the third and fourth. Each team scored two runs in the fifth, bringing the score to 11-11.
In the bottom of the sixth, Republic grabbed the lead again on a leadoff homer by Fenske. But Ozark scored three in the seventh and held off Republic to escape with a win.
After the game, Republic honored its four seniors: Addi Cantrell, Livi Collier, Higgins, and Megan Thorne. Coach Lee Dishman says this year’s senior class has stepped up to a leadership role across the board.
“What these four seniors have provided is leadership. We’ve had one or two seniors step up in the past, but this year, all four of them stepped up,” says Dishman. “We have a senior class that wants to lead by example and do things right. I could say good things about each and every one of them, but they’re a pretty awesome group.”