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Two-out hitting key, NH takes out Scottsburg

Two-out hitting key, NH takes out Scottsburg
Two-out hitting key, NH takes out Scottsburg
North Harrison's Kaylin Bright slides hard into second base, breaking up any double-play thoughts by Scottsburg's Olivia Thompson in the Class 3A Silver Creek Sectional Monday. Photo by Brian Smith

Coming up with four straight two-out hits in the fourth inning provided enough runs for North Harrison to shut out Scottsburg, 3-0, in the first round of the Class 3A Silver Creek Sectional on Monday.
Playing the latter of four games in the eight-team sectional on Memorial Day, the Lady Cats closed the book on Scottsburg under the lights with freshman pitcher Lacie Smith earning the win in the circle. It was an error-free game behind Smith, who scattered six hits, struck out two and walked one.
‘We are hitting our targets,’ North Harrison coach Eric Pavey said. ‘People are going to get hits, but our freshman pitcher did well. If we play our defense like we should ‘ hold teams to singles not doubles and doubles not triples ‘ that’s our ballgame.’
Offensively, it was Kaylin Bright and Kodi House logging two hits each for the Lady Cats. In the important fourth inning, posting the game’s three runs, the latter part of North Harrison’s lineup came up in the clutch.
Bright led the inning off with a single, but a take-out slide on a grounder hit by Kyia Oppel prevented a possible double play. Oppel similarly broke up two on a roller off Kenedy House’s bat.
Then the hits came. Brittany Rudolph brought home House with a single over the second-base bag. Abby Bozynski reached on a hit before Kodi House and Aspen Luther logged run-scoring singles to post a 3-0 lead.
‘Bottom of the order has carried us the last three games,’ Pavey said. ‘They’ve really come around. The top of the lineup every coach expects to be there, but, when the bottom of the lineup is doing well, it makes it all click.’
Bright and Oppel started the fifth with singles, but Scottsburg pitcher Erika Tscheulin was able to work out of the jam. A walk and an error set up another shot at insurance runs in the sixth, but Alaina Sears’ fly-out to left resulted in a double play, assisting a throw home to cut down Kodi House trying to tag from third.
House reached in each plate appearance, collecting two singles and a walk.
‘She’s been seeing the ball well,’ Pavey said. ‘We told her over the weekend to not touch a bat, just come in hitting because she’s zoned in.’
During the regular season, North Harrison rolled to a five-inning, 10-0 win. The tournament meeting was much closer.
‘I think we were a little anxious, to be honest,’ Pavey said. ‘We didn’t match their intensity the first few innings offensively, but we had no errors and matched their intensity with our play in the field. We did pretty well with (Scottsburg) runners on today, getting out of innings.’
The Warriorettes got a lead-off double by Laikin Smith in the second inning, but she wouldn’t advance farther than second base. Singles by Olivia Thompson and Haley Mullins put a pair on with two outs in the fifth, but, again, Smith induced infield outs.
A pair of runners was also stranded in the sixth, including a second double by Laikin Smith. To go with Smith’s two hits, Mullins also had a pair.
‘It was 0-0 in the fourth, so it was good ball,’ Pavey said.
Looking forward to the semi-final, the Lady Cats will face Silver Creek tonight (Wednesday) at 7. North Harrison won the regular season meeting in Ramsey.
‘Silver Creek has great pitching, plays small ball and are well coached,’ Pavey said. ‘We need to hit the ball against them to have a chance.’

Scottsburg 000 000 0 ‘ 0 6 1
North Harrison 000 300 x ‘ 3 9 0
W ‘ Smith, L ‘ Tscheulin.
2B ‘ Bush 2 (S).