Exira-EHK’s five seniors were recognized following Monday’s regional win over CAM. Left-right: Maggie Rasmussen, Katie Kunik, Mara Burmeister, Rachel Walker and Alex Petersen. Spartan senior Rachel Walker (4) prepares to lead off first base during Monday’s game. Exira-EHK second baseman Mara Burmeister (left) makes a relay throw to first after forcing out a sliding Emma Dorsey of CAM during Monday’s regional softball game. The Spartans won 8-3. (Photos by Mike Oeffner) Spartan senior Maggie Rasmussen issued no walks while striking out four vs. CAM. Exira-EHK senior Alex Petersen connects for a fifth-inning single against CAM.

Spartans celebrate Senior Night with regional win over Cougars

 KIMBALLTON (July 3) -- When last week’s Senior Night game was rained out, the Exira-Elk Horn-Kimballton softball team rescheduled the recognition ceremony to follow Monday’s Class 1-A regional opener vs. CAM.
 Fortunately for this year’s five seniors, the only tears shed after the game were happy ones as the Spartans advanced with an 8-3 victory in their final game on the home diamond.
 Senior ace pitcher Maggie Rasmussen worked around 10 Cougar hits and junior Sophia Peppers hit her sixth home run and had a team-high five RBI as Exira-EHK (15-10) defeated its Rolling Valley Conference rival for the third time this season and set up a quarterfinal matchup with Audubon on Wednesday (at Glidden).
 Head coach Jodee Dixon noted that state rules prevented the Spartans from recognizing their seniors prior to a regional game, so they opted for a postgame ceremony instead and hoped for the best.
 This year’s five seniors include Rasmussen, Katie Kunik, Mara Burmeister, Alex Petersen and Rachel Walker.
 “We kind of joked about it ... and I said, ‘Well, you guys have to win now because nobody wants to be out there with runny makeup and crying when you’re celebrating Senior Night,’” Dixon said.

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