Lady Rangers drop contest to University High

Published 11:34 pm Thursday, April 14, 2016

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A lot can happen in just one inning of softball, and that was the case Thursday during the Lady Rangers’ match up with University High in Stoney Creek.

Behind a five-run fourth inning, the Lady Bucs outpaced Unaka 8-2 to advance their Watauga Valley Conference record to 5-0.

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“They were able to execute in the fourth,” University High head coach Keith Jeffers said Thursday. “If they can execute, we do just fine, and they did that inning.”

Up 2-1, the Lady Buccaneers started the fourth inning with a double from Miranda Honeycutt, who was later brought home by a hit from Riley Horton. Horton would find her way to the house off a RBI single from Molly Dison. Dison came home off a walk, before Kensington Dailey smacked a 2-RBI single to net both Frankie Cradic and Madi Freeman.

“We had a couple errors there in that inning,” said Unaka head coach Kenneth Chambers. “That has been our problem all year long. One inning usually beats us. It seems like once we make one error, it just overwhelms us. But you know, we are starting five freshman, three sophomores and a junior.”

The game may not have ended how Unaka wanted, but it sure did start out in their favor. On the Lady Rangers’ first at bat in the bottom of the first, freshman Madison Pierce blasted a home run out of left field, giving her team a quick 1-0 lead.

“She is a very good hitting and player,” Chambers said about Pierce. “She does it all. She can play at any position. We are lucky to have her.”

The Lady Bucs answered Unaka’s run in the top of the second with Cradic hitting an RBI single to bring home Ari Ramsaran, tying the game up at one.

UH picked up a go-ahead run in the top of the third as Dailey brought home Freeman with an RBI single giving her team a 2-1 edge, before coming alive in the fourth inning to take a 7-1 lead.

The Lady Rangers picked up their second run of the game in the bottom of the fifth with Piece hitting an RBI single to bring in Erika Potter to cut UH’s lead to five runs, 7-2.

The last run of the game happen in the top of the seventh with UH’s Ramsaran bombing a homerun out of left field that sailed onto the Unaka Rangers’ football field.

Unaka’s Sarah Hardin started things out on the mound for the Rangers and tossed for roughly four inning before being relieved by Corie Schuttler in the fourth. During her time tossing, Hardin had two strike outs and one walk with five hits and four runs against her. Schuttler threw for the remained of the game, during which she struck out a batter and walked one, while having four hits and three runs against her.

“Pitching was OK,” Chambers said. “I changer pitchers in the fourth, but it was not because she was doing bad. She was pitching fine. We just made a few errors. So I though we would try a different look.”

With the loss, the Lady Rangers recorded moved to 3-3 in the WVC. Unaka will head over to Sullivan South today for some non-conference action.