BATTLE CREEK - Teams hope they play their best when nearing a championship, which can make losing easier to swallow.
And while Rapid River's Division 4 softball opponent Dansville was a deserving team, the Rockets made some uncharacteristic mistakes in a 4-3 loss in the semifinals, the third time the school has made it this far in the past four years.
RR (35-6) got off to a hot start with three runs in the first inning, including a walk that resulted in a run after Danville couldn't finish off a rundown between third and home.
"It was a tremendous start," said Rockets manager George Kanyuh. "I thought we'd feed off it more than we did."
Instead, it was then that the Aggies began their comeback.
Rockets pitcher Heather Sanderson struck out the first batter she faced, but Hailey Mays got a hit before the unthinkable happened, an error on a routine fly to center field that led to a run.
After that big first inning, the Rockets managed just one hit the rest of the way as sophomore pitcher Meagan Kelley slammed the door.
In the meantime, Dansville scored once in the third inning off three consecutive hits and again in the fourth to tie it 3-3.
Dansville pushed the winning run across in the sixth, opening with an error, followed by two groundouts and an RBI single.
Even in the seventh, RR's Averi Kanyuh reached first on a two-out infield pop-up that wasn't caught and Ashley Hough singled. But it was all for naught as Ashleigh Monticello flied out and Dansville drowned the field in celebration.