Emily Reis delivers walk-off winner for Regina
Defending 2A state champions return to Fort Dodge
IOWA CITY — It was the weirdest walk-off celebration you’ve ever seen. Iowa City Regina senior Emily Reis launched a 2-1 pitch to deep left field with two outs in the bottom of the seventh. The ball hit the fence and Emily Bonnett scored the winning run.
And then … nothing.
It must have been 10 seconds before the defending champion Regals flooded the field, finally realizing that they had won the Class 2A regional final, 2-1, over Pella Christian and were heading back to the state tournament.
“We were confused at first,” senior Kennedy Brown said, laughing. “We were sitting there and we’re like ‘Oh we won.’ It was a little delayed reaction.”
Regals break the cycle and head to state! pic.twitter.com/28Me2Mrfet— Regina High School (@ReginaRegalsAP) July 12, 2016
Reis, batting ninth, was the unlikely hero of a taut, tense game between two evenly matched teams. Reis had only 15 at-bats a year ago and only 37 coming into Monday. But she was instrumental in producing both runs. She led off the third with a triple to center, created by her own aggressive baserunning, and tied the game on Emma Corkery’s ground out.
“I saw it go out there, and I knew I had to get on my horse and run,” Reis said. “I just knew we needed the run, so I had to go (to third). I thought it was caught, but I just kept running. You never know.”
In the seventh, her two-out double won the game.
“It was pretty nerve-wracking but my Coach (Jon Prottsman) just came up and said ‘you’ve got to keep your head on the ball,’ and I knew I had to do that,” Ries said. “It was right down the middle, and I knew I had to hit it.”
“I thought it was gone,” Brown said. “I was just excited for her. For her to come in and this is her first year playing varsity and stepping up on the field and for her to get that hit on her last game on this field, it was awesome.”
Sarah Lehman got the victory for Regina (26-16), giving up only two hits and striking out 10. The Eagles’ (21-8) only run scored on a passed ball.