Another hot start by the Lady Vikings unfortunately ended in defeat.
Two early runs could not bring forth victory for Rowan’s girls, as it fell victim to an East Carter hot streak, falling 8-3 in Grayson on Monday night.
Rowan County Head Coach Larry Slone said his team’s loss was a result of giving up critical walks.
“The ball game was a lot closer than the 8-3 score,” Slone said. “But, they did stretch it out in the bottom of the sixth, got some breathing room, and pretty much took care of business in the sixth. They just hit the ball a little better than we did tonight.”
With two outs in the top of the first inning, Slone’s girls quickly turned things around when Tessa Jennings and Morgan Mitchell picked up two big doubles.
Jennings double drove home Alli Banks for the RBI, while Mitchell’s follow-up hit sent Jennings in for the score, giving Rowan County a 2-0 lead headed into the second frame of the first.
The Lady Vikings maintained its strong play fielding the ball until the bottom of the third inning, holding the Lady Raiders scoreless for two innings.
East’s girls picked up three runs when Jordyn Wiler brought home two teammates for two RBIs, followed by a single RBI to bring home Heather Withrow to put Rowan in a 3-2 hole.
After a scoreless fourth, Mackenzie Summers ripped a double to deep center field in the fifth to cross Jennings over home plate for the tying score at 3-3.
Strong batting by the Lady Raiders picked apart the Lady Vikings defense, finding gaps to pick up big doubles, giving East a 5-3 advantage headed into the sixth.
Slone gave credit to the home team for its strong hitting.
“I tip my hat to them, they just hit the ball a little better than we did tonight,” Slone said. “They got the big hits when they needed them, and this allowed them to pull away late in the game.”
Unable to bag big hits late in the game, the Lady Vikings would give up three more runs to the Lady Raiders.
Trailing 8-3 in the seventh, it seemed as if things could take a turn for the better when Colleen Helvey picked up a double on a grounder.
Runs unfortunately did not materialize, as a pop up to the outfield was caught out to end the game.
“Where I get aggravated is when we start giving things away, and we can’t recover,” Slone said. “If a team beats us with solid hitting, that just happens sometimes. These girls are young and they will learn to dig themselves out of these holes we have put ourselves in a few times this season.”
At 7-8 after the loss at East, the Lady Vikings got back to action last night after press time with a trip to Fleming County for a district rival matchup with the Lady Panthers, before it heads off to Corbin this weekend to compete in the Lady Redhound Softball Classic.
Make sure to pick up Tuesday’s edition of The Morehead News to see if the Lady Vikings can paint Corbin green.
Grant Stevens can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 784-4116.