The Butler softball team saw its season come to an end with an extra-inning loss to Garden City on Sunday in the Region VI Tournament at East Park.
The Grizzlies finish the year 34-15. Butler had won its fifth-straight conference title but was unable to win a fifth-straight regional title. For the first time since 2010, the Grizzlies will not advance to the NJCAA National Tournament.
Butler had its backs against the wall on Sunday. The Grizzlies would have had to have beaten Garden City to advance to the championship game, then would had to have beaten Barton twice to take the title.
Still, the Grizzlies looked to be in position to get the first win. Butler took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second on an RBI fielder's choice from Gracie Bogle and a run-scoring single by Haylee Lorenz.
Garden City got a run in the top of the fourth to cut Butler's lead to 2-1, but the Grizzlies got an insurance run in the bottom of the fifth with a solo home run to left by Jill Shipman.
Kaelah McMullin had allowed just three Garden City hits through the first six innings and retired the first two batters in the seventh. The Broncbusters, down to their last out, got a single, then took advantage of a dropped fly ball in right by Lorenz to score one run. Another single tied the game.
Butler went three-up, three-down in the bottom of the seventh, forcing extra innings.
In the eighth, Garden City again had two outs with nobody on and again came up with a two-out rally to score a run. In the bottom of the inning, Butler's Aujanae McCoy singled, stole second and went to third on a ground ball, but was stranded there as the game ended.