Mucky conditions greet Lanesville’s season debut
Squeaky new batting gloves gripping a shiny new bat are some of the expectations when the first pitch to a softball season gets twirled.
Last Tuesday, the Lanesville softball team went to bat with sparkling white cleats with few keeping their pearly glow after rain created muddy conditions at Providence High School in Clarksville.
Through the muck, the Lady Eagles came away with an 11-1 victory in six innings.
‘First game,’ repeated Lanesville coach Eric Pavey. ‘First game. It’s good to be playing, but we still have a lot to work on. We had a few mental errors, missing some signals and knowing when to swing in what counts, but, it’s the first game.’
Much of the position players for Lanesville featured new faces around the diamond after the Lady Eagles graduated a big class from a Class 1A regional championship squad. One stickler in the lineup and in the pitching circle was senior Katelyn Hurley.
Versus Providence, Hurley was in control despite playing through periods of light and heavy rains. She earned the win, going all six innings, giving up one run. She struck out 10 and allowed only three hits.
‘(Hurley) had a heck of a game,’ Pavey said. ‘She had good control of her pitches. She gave up the home run, she missed a pitch with a screw ball and left it up, but, other than that, she pitched really good.’
Offensively, Lanesville notched seven runs in the fourth inning off Providence starter Hannah Wolford.
‘Having not seen live pitching until now, we had to use some small ball to get things going, be aggressive on the bases,’ Pavey said. ‘Hannah is a good pitcher and one of the best ones we will see this year.’
A hard-hit ball, splitting the gap in left center, sent Jessica Smith to second base to kick off the first of many Lanesville base runners in the fourth.
Two batters later, after Lily Romeo was hit by a pitch, Makayla Philpott reached on a squeeze play to send Smith home. Danielle Brown reached on an infield single, sandwiched between free passes drawn by Hayley Adams, Mackenzie Miller and Abby Duncan.
Three runners scored when Danielle Haire reached on an infield single and throwing error. Courtesy runner Haley Smith went on to swipe third and score on a wild pitch to put the score at 9-0.
Smith’s slide into the muddy dirt was prompted like many in the Lady Eagles’ dugout with smiles and a uniform in need of a pressure washer.
‘A little bit of last year’s success is carrying over,’ Pavey said. ‘It’s about how you play and building success. This team seems to be carrying over the theme that you need to come ready to play and be competitive daily.’
Providence was able to crack the scoreboard with a big fly off the bat of Kayce Quinn. The freshman belted a solo shot to left to open the bottom of the fourth inning. Gabby Roberts reached on an infield error with two outs for the Lady Pioneers, but Hurley ended the frame by striking out Katie Oelker.
Prior to the big inning, Lanesville scored the season’s first run in the first inning when Abby Duncan reached on an infield error on a pop up. Duncan later raced home on an error trying to gun her down as she stole third base.
Another run came across in the second inning. With one out, Hayley Adams brought home Romeo with a squeeze bunt.
To reach the mercy rule, Lanesville added a pair of runs in the sixth. Haley Kaiser reached on a hit by pitch, then Duncan drew a walk. Kaiser eventually scored on a wild pitch, then Haire delivered a run-scoring double before getting thrown out at third base.
Lanesville finished with six hits, led by a 2-for-3 day out of Hurley. Duncan came around to score three times. For the game, Lanesville drew seven free passes.
Lanesville is set to host Orleans on Friday.
Lanesville 110 702 ‘ 11 6 1
Providence 000 100 ‘ 1 3 5
W ‘ Katelyn Hurley, L ‘ Hannah Wolford.
2B ‘ Jessica Smith (L), Danielle Haire (L); HR ‘ Kayce Quinn (P).