Stuttgart drops Royals from unbeaten ranks
The Stuttgart Panthers leapt back into the Division I championship scene on Saturday as they knocked off the defending champion Ramstein Royals 10-5 in the opening game of a home-field doubleheader.
The visiting Royals evened the series in the late game with a 10-9 win.
Stuttgart pitcher Leah Fries posted 16 strikeouts in the Panthers' early win. The Stuttgart offense, meanwhile, produced runs in each of the first four innings to support their pitcher's efforts.
Ramstein recovered in the late game with four runs in the fifth and final inning.
The Panthers have spent the last two weekends breaking even with last year's two finalists. They split a pair with 2015 runner-up Vilseck on May 7.
Ramstein dropped from the ranks of the undefeated with the loss.
Kaiserslautern 12/14, Wiesbaden 0/1: Friday at Kaiserslautern, the Raiders stayed undefeated with a pair of blowout wins over the visiting Warriors.
Tori Liggins led the way throughout, dominating on the mound and at the plate. Liggins struck out 13 while allowing just three hits over the doubleheader and added four hits to pace the batting order.
The Raiders have taken down all of their Division I opponents, including Stuttgart, save for defending champion Ramstein.
Kaiserslautern now stands as the division's last remaining unbeaten, and the Raiders get their shot at the Royals next weekend in both teams' regular-season finales.
Bitburg 21/16, AFNORTH 4/5: Friday at Bitburg, the Barons scored in every inning of a decisive doubleheader sweep.
Allison Lillemon led the Barons' offensive fireworks with five hits, including two triples and a home run. Nikki Jiao and Leigha Daryanani picked up the respective pitching wins for Bitburg.
SHAPE sweeps through Germany: The Spartans piled up 55 runs over three games on the weekend, beating Baumholder 21-12 on Friday then sweeping Bitburg 19-16 and 15-14 on Saturday.
The successful swing improved SHAPE to 5-2 on the season. The Spartans visit Wiesbaden next weekend in their regular season finale.
BaseballRamstein 10/8, Stuttgart 1/3: Saturday at Stuttgart, the defending champion Royals cleared another regular-season hurdle with a sweep of the Panthers.
Ramstein stayed undefeated with the pair of wins over its longtime rival, which come a week after the Royals took two from Wiesbaden, the newest challenger to its throne.
The Royals have a final weekend to look forward to ahead of the European tournament. They'll host AFNORTH on Friday, then visit Kaiserslautern a day later.
Wiesbaden 18/4, Kaiserslautern 6/0: Friday at Kaiserslautern, the Warriors recovered from their first losses of the season by pounding the Raiders.
The wins improve Wiesbaden to 10-2 on the season and end a two-game losing streak triggered by Ramstein's 9-0 and 4-2 wins last weekend. The Warriors host SHAPE to wrap up the regular season on May 21.
Bitburg 9/3, AFNORTH 0/1: Friday at Bitburg, the Barons won a late pitching duel with the Lions to secure a sweep.
Bitburg's Max Little earned a complete-game victory in the nightcap, striking out 10 while giving up just three hits and a single earned run. That was just enough to best AFNORTH ace Trent Weldon, who allowed six hits and struck out seven while yielding just three unearned runs.