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Sterling softball sweeps Larned in opener
Larneds Maci Perez waits on a pitch. - photo by Janet Fleske Special to the Tribune

LARNED — Two eighth-inning errors paved the way for Sterling High’s softball sweep over Larned Thursday in a Central Kansas League opener. Sterling swept the Indians 4-3 in extra innings and 18-10 in the nightcap.
Sterling broke a 2-2 tie when the Black Bears had two baserunners reach base. Kylah Comley and Emma Horsch scored the go-ahead runs on a base hit by Lindsay Gilmore off losing pitcher Shay Shepherd.
Maci Perez homered for Larned in the bottom of the eighth inning. The Indians’ Annie Russum scored for a 2-2 tie.
“We feel like we let one slip away in the first game,” said Larned coach Derek Wilson. “Shay pitched really well, and we made a few mistakes behind her, but she was able to give us a chance.”
The second game was an offensive show. Sterling scored at least three runs five times. Sterling led 9-0 after two at-bats.
Larned kept rallying, but could not push the Black Bears. Russum and Perez each scored two runs. Eight Indians crossed the plate. The Indians scored runs in five innings.
“In the second game, we got down early and it seemed like we couldn’t get that one hit to open the floodgates,” Wilson said. “We are pretty young playing 4 sophomores  and a freshman, so there are bound to be some ups and downs early.  I saw some good things, and some things we need to work on.”  
Sterling 4, Larned 3
Sterling     001 001 02— 4
Larned      000 011 01— 3
Horsch and Stallings. Shepherd and Langdon. W—Horsch. L—Shepherd. HR—L, Perez.
Sterling 18, Larned 10
Sterling     450 333 0— 18
Larned      013 213 0— 10
Stallings and Horsch. Glover and Langdon. W—Horsch. L—Glover.