Thursday, March 23, 2017

Lady Eagles improve to 3-0

The Oran High School softball team won their third straight game to open the season this afternoon at Advance, defeating the Hornets 11-0.

Oran scored a run in the top of the first, Sydney Kern reached on an infield single, stole second and scored on Leah Cauble's double.  Clare Ramsey hit a vicious line drive that was snared by the pitcher and the inning fizzled.

In fact, the Eagles would not get a runner past first base the next three innings.

On the slow start, Coach Jim Eftink said, "It took us a while to get going. Their starting pitcher was a little unorthodox and she had us flustered."

Meanwhile, Sam Welter had a bend but don't break mentality in the pitcher's circle as the home team had two runners in the first and third, but they could not get a runner past second base.  In fact, Advance did not get a runner past 2nd the whole game and only had one baserunner after the third inning.  That was a two-out single in the sixth.

Finally, in the fifth, Oran got going as they batted 13.  They scored 8 runs on 8 hits and were helped by 2 Hornet errors and a base on balls.  The biggest at-bats came from Ramsey, who drove in 2 with a double to left and Kenzie Graviett who plated 2 on a squeeze play before she was thrown out trying to advance to second.

In the seventh, Malia Legrand was hit by a pitch, Kern laced a line drive that got past the left-fielder allowing Legrand to score and Kern advance all the way to third.  Kaylee Payne singled Kern home to wrap up the scoring.

Welter went the distance in the circle.  She allowed only 4 hits, a walk while striking out 5.

Regarding Welter, Eftink said, "Sam had a seven-inning shutout and with her change up not working that well she made due with her other pitches."

Eftink also praised the defense of two of his players, "Kudos to Kenzie Graviett who stepped up to start her first game at third base. She had quite a game. Looked solid over there. I'm very proud of her.  Also, Sydney had a very good game out in center. She made a couple of running catches.  She and Kenzie were gold ball winners."

At the plate, Cauble went 3-4, with a double and an RBI.  Kern was 3-5 and scored 3 runs.  Kenzie Graviett was 2-4 with 2 runs driven in and Payne drove in 2 while going 1-4.  Maddie Graviett added 2 hits in four at bats.

Eftink said, "Leah had another big game at the plate. She's off to a great start."

"Up next for us is a trip to Puxico. Kaylee will get the start over there."

That game is Tuesday at 4:30.

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