SOFTBALL: Empire opens up Badger Classic with a win over Marana

March 15, 2017 by Andy Morales, AZPreps365

Jaden Romero (Andy Morales/


Marana beat Desert View 16-3 in the opening round of pool play of the Badger Classic on Wednesday but the Tigers were limited to three hits in a 6-2 loss to Empire in the second game of the night.

The Badger Classic started on Wednesday, Mar. 15 and the championship game is scheduled for Saturday, Mar. 18 at 4 p.m. All games are scheduled for Cherry Field. Sunnyside beat Catalina Foothills 5-2 and Tucson beat Desert View 8-1 in other action from Wednesday night.

Jaden Romero took the circle for the Ravens and the junior came away with her eighth victory to help Empire improve to 12-0-1 on the year. Romero gave up a run in the bottom of the second and another in the fifth on an RBI double from Katie Faulk but that was it. Diondra Bodman had two hits to lead the Tigers.

Meanwhile, Empire plated three runs in the top of the first and that was all the Ravens needed but the team added three more in the fifth for the 6-2 win.

Emma Garbutt had an RBI double to lead the Ravens in the first inning and Garbutt was one of five Ravens to collect at least one hit in the game. Junior Hannah Brink went 2-3 with an RBI to help lead Empire.

“I think I’m doing really well because I have a great defense behind me,” Romero said. “We have really good chemistry and everything is going really nice but coach always tells us we are only a good as our next game.”

Romero committed to Indiana Tech and the junior might put her record on the line against Tucson on Thursday during pool play. The Ravens will also take on Sunnyside later in the night while Marana will play Buena at noon.

Faulk took the circle for Marana and Cheyenne Hudson took over in the sixth inning while Romero went the distance for Empire.


Thursday, Mar. 16 Schedule

Buena vs. Marana, Noon

Desert View vs. Rio Rico, Noon

Rio Rico vs. Sunnyside, 2 p.m.

Catalina Foothills vs. Buena, 2 p.m.

Empire vs. Tucson, 4 p.m.

Vista Grande vs. Catalina Foothills, 4 p.m.

Tucson vs. Vista Grande, 6 p.m.

Sunnyside vs. Empire, 6 p.m.