By Mark Carpenter – People’s Defender
The early season success for Coach Doug McFarland and his Peebles Lady Indians continued earlier this week as they picked up a pair of wins in the Southern Hills Athletic Conference and improved their record in 2016 to five wins against just two defeats.
On Monday, April 4, freshman Madison Pierce threw her second consecutive shutout as the Lady Indians topped Fayetteville 4-0 and then the combination on the mound of freshman McKenzie Swango and junior Jessica Sowards and a hot-hitting offense led the Peebles girls to a 12-5 win over the Whiteoak Lady Wildcats.
In the Monday win over Fayetteville, the Lady Indians picked up the only run they would eventually need in the bottom of the second inning when Jerilin Toller reached on an error and came home on a base hit by catcher Kylie Sims. Peebles plated one more in their half of the third when McKenzie Swango walked and scored on an RBI single by Sierra Stone.
One more Peebles run came across in the bottom of the fourth as Sowards reached on an error, was bunted to second by Matti Nichols, and came home on Sims’ second hit of the day. The final Peebles run of the afternoon came in the bottom of the fifth on base hits by Swango and Stone and a ground out by Kaitlin Toller that made it 4-0.
In her seven innings of work in her second shutout in as many outings, Pierce allowed just two hits to the Lady Rockets, while striking out seven.
On the following day again on their home field, the Lady Indians’ offense came up big early, tallying five runs in both the bottom of the second and the bottom of the third. In the second, Peebles got base hits from Kaitlin
and Jerilin Toller plus Pierce, and combined with a walk to Matti Nichols and a Whiteoak error, resulted in five runs.
After Whiteoak rallied with three runs off Swango in the top of the third, the Lady Indians struck right back with five more in their half, sending ten hitters to the plate and getting hits from Jerilin Toller, Pierce, Aubrey McFarland, Swango, and Stone on their way to a 10-3 advantage.
With Sowards on in relief in the top of the fourth, the Lady Cats picked up a single run, but Peebles answered with two in their half. Whiteoak’s final run came in the top of the sixth off Sowards, but it was too little, too late as the Lady Indians notched win number five by the final count of 12-5.
In the win, the Peebles offense pounded out 12 hits, getting two from Pierce, two from Swango, two from Stone, two from Kaitlin Toller, and two from Jerilin Toller. Swango went the first three innings on the mound for the win, with Sowards throwing the final four.
The Peebles girls were slated to be back in action on Thursday, April 7 at home again with Eastern Brown, but that contest was scratched due to the inclement weather. They were also scheduled to host the Ripley Lady Jays
on Friday, April 8, but that game’s status was not determined as of press time. Perhaps most disappointing to the Lady Indians was the fact that a scheduled weekend trip to Akron to play three games in two days was also cancelled because of the cold, wet weather.
Mark Carpenter can be reached at 937-544-2391 or at firstname.lastname@example.org