After it was over, Kennedy Lape hugged her father and softball coach, Bob.
Father embraced daughter and spoke words of comfort as the Oelwein senior hugged tighter.
Lape pitched doggedly Thursday at home against Decorah, allowing just four hits to the Northeast Iowa Conference co-leaders. She walked just two batters and struck out six, posting an earned-run average of zero.
The lone problem — a one-out error in the top of the first inning led to two unearned runs and a 2-0 loss to the Vikings.
After the miscue that allowed Abigail Milburn to reach base, Avery Shelton and Ella Kittleson laced consecutive singles, with Kittelson’s hit plating Milburn and courtesy runner Lani Hubka for the only runs of the game.
“Kennedy gave up four hits,” Bob Lape said. “Unfortunately, we made an error in there that allowed them to have some help … you know, it is what it is.”
Lape walked Isabel Ihde with two outs but retired the next 14 Vikings as the Huskies defense steeled itself. Decorah (17-7, 14-4) saw Kittelson reach again on a single in the sixth and Mya Numedahl move to third in the seventh after a two-out walk.
Kittleson was gunned out at second as she tried to stretch the single into a double, and Numedahl was stranded at third.
In the other dugout, Vikings senior pitcher Avery Shelton was as up to the task. Shelton stymied Oelwein (11-12, 5-9) over seven innings, allowing two baserunners across 21 at-bats.
Jillian Prouty drew a two-out walk in the third and Natalie Crandall collected the Huskies’ lone hit — a one-out single.
“Both pitchers are pretty good pitchers,” coach Lape said. “We ourselves can’t have one hit and win a game. It’s just not — it doesn’t work that way.
“Two to nothing. We played well, just didn’t get enough hits.”
UP NEXT: The Huskies begin their postseason on Tuesday when they host Monticello (15-10, 13-5 in the River Valley Conference) for a Class 3A Region 6 first-round game at 7 p.m.