Softball: Elk Grove falls to Moline, finishes fourth in Class 4AElk Grove catcher #16 Devan Parkison watches the ball slip away as Moline's #4 Emily Rasche scores at the plate Saturday during the Class 4A Girls Softball Third Place Championship game at Eastside Centre in East Peoria. June 9, 2012 | Michael Smart~Sun-Times Media
Updated: June 9, 2012 6:28PM
It probably wasn’t the way Elk Grove pitcher Dani Goranson wanted to end her career, but at least she ended it on the field at EastSide Centre in East Peoria. Only 16 teams in the state can say that.
The Grenadiers lost the Class 4A third-place game 4-2 to defending state champion Moline in eight innings.
Goranson (25-9) got the loss in the circle and had several chances to end the game with her bat but couldn’t get it done. She’ll be remembered, however, as one of the best players to ever walk the halls at Elk Grove (31-10).
“Dani is special and she’ll be missed,” Elk Grove coach Ken Grams said. “It was a good season for a team that had to battle to score runs.”
The Maroons (31-11) trialed 2-0 in the top of the seventh before connecting on four consecutive hits against Goranson, who recorded her 300th strikeout of the season in the second inning. Jordon de los Reyes capped the quartet of hits with a game-tying two-run single.
The score remained that way until the top of the eighth when with two out Emily Rasche (3-for-5) singled and later scored when Kaitlin Knary reached on an error by left fielder Allie Peters. Knary later scored on a single by Brittny Drish (3-for-5), who had five hits — including two home runs — in the semifinals.
Hayley Marlier was 2-for-4 for the Maroons, while Goranson, Becca Walz, and Elisa Payne had two hits each for the Grenadiers.
The Grenadiers scored one in the fifth and one in the sixth. Both runs scored on two of the Maroons three errors on the day.