Lady Cyclones open the season with big win against Johnson County

Published 11:48 pm Monday, March 14, 2022

BY AUSTIN ALEXANDER
STAR CORRESPONDENT
Another spring season of softball was in the air on Monday with the hopes and dreams of a championship alive and well for everyone. Both Elizabethton and Johnson County come into this season highly touted and expected to have great campaigns, but nothing serves better as an opening barometer than a matchup.
After a stiff pitcher’s duel for the first few innings, Betsy burst through to win 6-2.
The inning started with Elizabethton ace, Madisun Pritchard on the mound. She would strike out her first faced batter and that set up her performance on the night as the Longhorns were put out one, two, three in the inning.
Hannah Fritts got the start for Johnson County and threw a stellar first three innings managing to go stride for stride with Pritchard.
Pritchard continued to sit batters down through the second and third innings with the Cyclones finally getting on the board in an error-laden bottom of the third.
After an error put Maely Ingram on base, a dropped third strike led to a wild sequence in which an errant throw to first from the catcher left Maddie O’Quinn safely at second and Ingram across the plate.
Another error later in the inning allowed  O’Quinn to score and the Cyclones led 2-0.
The Longhorns would finally plate their first run in the fourth behind a single to the right-field fence. That’s all they would come up with for the time being.
The Cyclone bats finally came alive in the bottom of the frame.
An inning-opening double from Kenidy Harris set the tone for the productive half as back-to-back walks after her loaded the bases. Ingram stepped up and smacked a double into center scoring two runs. After a batter was hit by a pitch, another error would score yet another run.
A wild pitch would top of the inning with the Cyclones leading 6-1.
The Longhorns would find one more run in the sixth inning but their rally was quickly shut down by Pritchard’s fantastic performance. Her eight strikeouts were the difference-maker for the Lady Cyclones as Elizabethton rolled to the season-opening win, 6-2.

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