Pearl River has solid showing in Sun Chief Classic
Richard Gleber - PRCC Sports Media
GULF SHORES, Ala. — The Pearl River softball team had a solid showing in the Sun Chief Classic on Saturday, splitting its two games. The Wildcats won game one against Marion Military Institute 6-2 and dropped a tough contest to Wallace State-Hanceville 4-2 in the nightcap.
“I believe we had great energy and fought all day,” PRCC head coach Christie Meeks commented on the team's performance. “We played two very tough teams and that is continuously making us better.”
PEARL RIVER 6, MARION MILITARY INSTITUTE 2
The Wildcats (9-3) used a complete game from Natalie Herrington (Petal) and two strong offensive innings to keep the Tigers (9-8 overall) from finding any rhythm on the day.
Herrington started strong in the first inning, striking out the first batter she faced and forcing two groundouts to CharLee Meadows (Piave; Greene County) and Morgan Lavergne (Baton Rouge, La.; Central).
Cassidy Cartwright (Poplarville) opened the bottom of the first inning with a single to left field. Bryn Daughtery (Vancleave) brought Cartwright home with a big two-run home run to give the Wildcats a 2-0 lead after one inning.
Herrington followed the first inning with a strong second inning on the mound. After walking the first batter, the Wildcats recorded the first out of the inning on a sacrifice bunt to Meadows. Herrington took over from there, striking out the final two batters faced.
After the Tigers added a run in the top of the third, the Wildcat plated four runs in the bottom half to bring the score to 6-1. Meadows led off with a walk. With two outs, Cartwright hit a line drive double to left field, advancing Meadows to third. In the next at-bat, Daughtery singled to center scoring Meadows and Cartwright. Marisa West (Citronelle, Ala.; LeRoy) sent a screaming home run over the left field wall to score Daughtery and bring the score to 6-1.
Both teams remained scoreless through the fourth and fifth innings. Herrington picked up two more strikeouts to bring her total to four through five innings.
MMI scored one more run in the top of the sixth. Herrington recorded her sixth strikeout in the bottom of the sixth. The Wildcats went into the seventh with a 6-2 lead.
Herrington made quick work of the Tigers in the top of the seventh, striking out the side and securing a 6-2 game-one Wildcat win.
LEADING THE WAY
Herrington struck out nine batters and only allowed two hits and two walks.
“Natalie had a great game,” Meeks said of Herrington. “She was very confident and composed.”
Daughtery was 3-for-3, with four RBI and two runs scored.
“Bryn had a phenomenal game one,” Meeks commented on Daughtery. “She always came up in such perfect moments.”
Cartwright was 2-for-3 with two runs scored and West went 1-for-3 with two RBI and one run scored.
WALLACE STATE-HANCEVILLE 4, PEARL RIVER 2
Pearl River and Wallace State (6-0 overall) found it tough to find offense early in the game. The Wildcats put runners on base in the first two frames but were unable to score.
Wallace State got on the board first in the bottom of the third inning after two consecutive singles followed by a double to bring both runners home. Pitcher Brinson Anne Rogers (Statesboro, Ga.) struck out three in the bottom of the third to bring her strikeout total to five.
A solo home run by West cut the Wallace State lead in half, 2-1, heading into the bottom of the fourth inning. Wallace State extended their lead back to two, 3-1, on a sacrifice fly with one out in the bottom of the fourth.
Lavergne reached base again in the top of the fifth. Daughtery advanced her to second with a single. The Wallace State defense stopped the Wildcats momentum, and both runners were left on base.
Wallace State plated one more run in the bottom of the fifth. Their leadoff hitter reached base on a single and advanced to second on a ground out. The runner scored on a fielding error to bring the lead to 4-1.
PRCC’s Destiney Gary (Richard Gleber/PRCC Athletics)
Destiney Gary (Greenwell Springs, La.; Central) reached first on a line drive single in the top of the sixth. In the next at-bat, Meadows hit a line drive to right field, scoring Gary on the play and cutting the lead to two, 4-2.
The Wildcats kept Wallace State to a three-up and three-down inning in the bottom of the sixth as Rogers recorded her eighth strikeout of the game. The Wildcat offense couldn't get anything going in the top of the seventh as PRCC fell, 4-2.
BY THE NUMBERS
Meadows finished 2-for-2 with one RBI and one walk. Gary was 2-for-3 with one run scored. Lavergne was 2-for-4 with a single and a double, and West was 1-for-3 and a solo home run.
Rogers recorded eight strikeouts in a complete game performance.
“Wallace State is a great team,” Meeks commented on game two. “We made a few errors in big moments, those are things we have to eliminate in big games.
“I felt like our energy was fantastic all day. Everyone continued to fight.”
The Wildcats will travel to Pensacola State College on February 28. Game times are 3/5 p.m. The games will be livestreamed at PirateNetwork.live.
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