By Mark Carpenter
It took four days to do it, but the wait turned out to be a worthwhile one for the softball and baseball squads from Peebles High School. On April 26, the two teams traveled down Route 32 to North Adams High School and because of a frightening visit from Mother Nature, both games had to be suspended before their completion and rescheduled for three days later on April 29.
The weather cooperated the second time around and the teams from Peebles, who were both leading their respective games when they were suspended, held on to those leads as the Lady Indians softball squad pulled off a 9-2 victory, while their baseball counterparts turned a 2-1 lead at the suspension into an 8-1 win on Friday afternoon.
In the softball action, the Lady Indians took an early lead, scoring twice in the top of the second off of North Adams starter Jade Spriggs, both coming home on a base hit to right by Matti Nichols. With freshman Madison Pierce on the mound for Peebles and putting goose eggs on the board for the North Adams offense, the Lady Indians broke the game wide open in the top of the third, sending 13 batters to the plate and tallying seven runs. Peebles took advantage of a crucial North Adams error and then strung together six consecutive hits to open up a 9-0 advantage, before the weather took control and forced the game to be suspended.
When the two teams returned to the field three days later, Spriggs did not allow another Peebles run, scattering four hits over the final four innings, but the damage had already been done. The Lady Devils finally broke their scoring ice, touching up Pierce for two runs in the bottom half of the sixth with a Cati Butler base hit driving home Carly Phillips and Spriggs.
That was it for the offense and when Pierce fired a scoreless seventh, the Lady Indians had picked up their 11th consecutive victory by the final count of 9-2.
That winning streak was broken on Saturday afternoon when Peebles dropped a pair in a doubleheader in non-conference play at Georgetown, 3-2 and 2-0 to leave them with a record of 12-4 going into this week.
Across the way on the baseball diamond, the baseball Indians used a strong pitching performance by Blake Stivers and a five-run seventh inning to pull away and defeat the host Green Devils 8-1. Stivers tossed a complete game two-hitter, not allowing an earned run and fanning 10 North Adams hitters.
Peebles jumped on North Adams starter Austin Parks early, getting two in the top of the first when a Stephen Penn base hit brought home Caleb West and Bostin Robinson. The Green Devils picked up an unearned run off of Stivers in their half of the first and then two pitchers settled into a duel that kept the score at 2-1 until the top of the fifth, after the game was suspended after three innings.
In the top of the fifth, Peebles grabbed a two-run advantage when Stivers reached on an error that allowed West, who had been hit by a pitch, to score. The visiting Indians then broke things wide open, putting up a five-spot in the top of the seventh off of Parks and reliever Cole Roades. A Penn base hit scored the first run and a bases loaded walk to Jacob Vaughn brought home another. Brennan Sims was plunked by a pitch to force home another, West reached on an error to bring in one more, and Robinson’s third hit of the day scored the final run of the inning to make it 8-1.
With the big cushion, Stivers set the Green Devils down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the seventh and the Indians had their fifth win of the 2016 season. The Peebles boys added to that win total on Saturday when they swept a doubleheader in non-conference play from Georgetown to improve to 7-7 on the season.