The Fort Dodge Softball invitational had a field of teams that made it Iowa’s premiere regular season tournament. Fort Dodge Coach Andi Adams designed the tournament to help her team become more battle tested and they did exactly that. The Dodgers fell to Muscatine 1-0, in the Finals in a pitcher duel. It was exactly what a #1 vs #2 match up is supposed to be, great pitchers, stellar defense, high drama, and getting a timely hit. Unfortunately, Fort Dodge was just unable to get the timely hits it needed.
Jalen Adams and Maura Chalupa of Muscatine were both locked in and were dealing. Adams did get some help from the defense behind her, specifically Tory Bennett. She had a diving catch to take a away a base hit, and had a diving stop of a grounder and flip to 2nd, that saved a run in the 2nd.
That’s Dodger Coach Andi Adams on Bennett’s incredible defensive performance. Neither team could muster a run through 6 innings. Muscatine’s Rylie Moss, arguably the best pure hitter in Iowa came out with 1 out and a runner in scoring position. The Dodgers chose to pitch to Moss and it hurt them. She doubled in the lone run of the game. Here’s Coach Adams on that decision.
Adams does feel that the tournament as a whole and the loss to Muscatine, will benefit her team. It is clear Adams is coaching for a July State Title run and not a June tournament title.
The Dodgers won three games in the tournament, they beat GTRA in the opener. On Friday evening, they were “taken to deep water” by Class 1A’s #1 Newell-Fonda before pulling that one out 4-1. They were able to get 5 straight hits and score 4 in the 6th.
In Saturday’s Semifinal round, the Dodgers beat Class 3A’s #1 Davenport Assumption 4-1, thanks in large part to a Martyne Lowrey two run triple in the 5th. Tory Bennett also had an RBI double.
Jalen Adams went the distance in all three of the games against teams all ranked in the top two in their respective classes. She allowed just 3 runs combined in those 3 games. Muscatine got 6 hits in the game, which is the most she allowed in any of game of the tournament.
The Dodgers fall for the 1st time since June 1st. The Dodgers were able to go through and simulate, the gauntlet that is the State Tournament. The Invitational did exactly what Coach Andi Adams was looking for and that is put her team in high pressure situations against the best competition in Iowa.