NORFOLK - Two completely different types of games resulted in the same outcome for Lincoln Southwest when the Silverhawks made the trip up to Norfolk.

Hard fought wins.

Thursday night marked the beginning of the softball season for both the Silverhawks and the Panthers. Two teams that are very familiar with each other in Class A softball and both squads have had hard fought battles over the years.

In the last eight appearances between the two, the series was tied 4-4. That was until Thursday, when Lincoln Southwest snagged both 5-3 and 20-8.

In the first game, Norfolk started ace Jessica Schmidt against the Lincoln Southwest bats. It was an easy start to the game, going three up three down.

The Panthers scored in the bottom of the first to take a 1-0 lead off of an Emerson Waldow RBI to score Kylie Baumgard.

The Silverhawks rallied back with two runs in the 2nd inning and another three runs tacked on in the third, including an Emily Jucht three-run blast, plus RBI's from Mabry Sphon and Emma Dostal.

Both teams would stay stagnant until the bottom of the 5th inning, when Norfolk plated two runs to cut the deficit to 5-3.

The Panthers would get another chance in the bottom of the 7th with runners on second and third, but Alexis Bradley struck out Kayla Bobeldyke swinging to secure the win. 

Bradley impressed in her first outing of the season, striking out nine batters and going the distance for a 5-3 Silverhawk win.

In the second game, Norfolk and Lincoln Southwest traded blows like two heavyweight boxers going for the belt.

Silverhawk Emily Jucht singled and and sent home Emma Dostal for an early 2nd inning lead, but the Panthers answered with a solo shot from Kierstyn Linn to tie it at 1-1.

Miley Wichman blasted a home run in the 2nd inning to give the Panthers a 2-1 lead, until Emma Dostal followed suit with a two-run bomb of her own in the 3rd to reclaim a 3-2 lead.

In the 5th inning, Lincoln Southwest continued to find its rhythm, scoring four-straight runs to lead 7-2.

That was until Norfolk tallied two more runs in the bottom of the 5th and with the bases loaded, Henly Morris cracked a grand slam that sent shockwaves throughout Ta Ha Zouka Park.

With Norfolk leading 8-7, the Lincoln Southwest athletes were unfazed, tying the game thanks to a single from Makenna Murphy and then busted things wide open after a few more hits combined with Panther errors.

Lincoln Southwest blew the door open with 13 runs in the 6th inning before shutting down Norfolk in the bottom half to secure a run-rule 20-8 victory on the road.

The Silverhawks start the season off strong and begin 2-0, while the Panthers fall to 0-2 after the tough defeats.

To watch the Top Plays from both games, the video at the top of the article highlights game one, while the video below highlights game two.