Pippa Passes: The Alice Lloyd College Lady Eagles softball team closed out the home portion of their schedule as they returned to the friendly confines of Caney Creek for six games over a three-day span, against Bluefield State and Johnson University. When the smoke had cleared, the squad had earned five impressive victories. The club now sports a 19-19 record, and the 19 victories are a new school record for wins in a season.
GAME 1: Alice Lloyd-14; Bluefield State-0
The hosts struck swiftly. After three consecutive singles scored 1 run (1-0), sophomore Alexis Morris (3B) drove a fastball over the center-field fence to add 3 more (4-0). Then, freshman Mackenzie Methax (DH) doubled, to plate another (5-0). One inning later, they would reload again.
In the second, senior Jada Estep (CF) started things with a blast to center (6-0). Later, after scoring an additional run and loading the bases (7-0), Methax decided to show her power by launching a grand slam to left (11-0). In the third junior Alyssa Clark (LF) doubled, which produced 2 more (13-0). Finally, one inning later, an error brought home the final run (14-0).
At the plate, Estep and Clark both finished 3-4, while Adkins and freshman Baylee (2B) Cox provided 2 hits. Meanwhile, ALC sophomore pitcher Haley Howell was in top form, limiting the Big Blues to only two singles over four innings. Sophomore Kursten Napier, came on to toss the final inning and picked up the save. The two combined for just 3 hits and 1 walk. They struck out 4 batters.
ALC prevailed in the hitting battle, 13-3, and committed just 1 error compared to BSC’s 3.
GAME 2: Alice Lloyd- 17, BSC-3
ALC struck fast, as they used 2 triples, 2 doubles, and 2 singles to gain the windfall. Sophomore Lyndsey Adkins (2B) and freshman Baylee Cox (RF) rapped the three-baggers (9-0), and opened the floodgates
ALC went scoreless in the second, and Bluefield got one run back in the third. (9-1). Unfortunately for the guests, the Caney Clubbers returned to their scoring ways. ALC added 5 more in the bottom half of the third, relying on 3 singles and a Morris double for fuel (14-1).
BS would then answer with 1 run in the fourth (14-2), but could only watch as the Lady Eagles produced 3 of their own. The damage was inflicted by senior Samantha Sturgill’s (1B) triple, Estep’s homer, and Clark’s double (17-2). The Big Blues were only able to cut 1 runoff that lead in their last chance and saw the home squad win big once more.
At the plate, Estep and Clark both finished 3-4, while Adkins and Cox provided 2 hits apiece. On the mound, senior Mckenzie Brewer started, allowing only 4 hits over four innings, striking out 3. Napier earned another save. Alice Lloyd took the hitting battle 14-9, and had 1 error, compared to JU’s 5.
GAME 1: Alice Lloyd-12; JU-6
The Lady Royals came out prepared as they scored 2 quick runs (2-0). The Lady Eagles responded in their first attempt as Estep led off things with a home run. The squad then added 2 more runs to the tally (3-2).
Johnson came back one inning later and repeated their first-inning output to regain the advantage (4-3), only to see ALC unleash 5 big runs to take control. Back-to-back doubles from Cox and Adkins were only a preview of things to come as freshmen Aspyn Branham (SS) and Methax upped the ante with back-to-back homers (8-4).
More damage was inflicted just one inning later as a Cox double was soon followed by a Morris blast. 3 more runs were now added to the total (11-4). JU inched closer with runs in the next two innings (11-6), but ALC got one of those back on a single, walk, and a sacrifice fly (12-6). The Tennessee squad opened the final inning with a double to keep hope, but the next three batters all popped out to end the game.
At the plate, Estep went 3-5 while Cox, Branham, and Methax provided two hits each. On the mound, Howell and Napier, combined for the victory, giving up just 4 earned runs and 2 walks while whiffing 4. Alice Lloyd took the hitting battle 12-8, and had only 1 error, compared to JU’s 5.
GAME 2: Alice Lloyd- 14, JU- 6
The good times continued for the Caney Creek Clubbers as they used an 8-run second to win big. JU hit the scoreboard first with a run in the second (0-1). The hosts, however, had an answer in their next-at-bat as they produced an onslaught. A single and three errors scored 2 and left the bases loaded (2-1). Happily, they didn’t stay loaded for long. Adkins promptly cleared the bases with a belt over the right-field wall (6-1). The club then received a gift of two more errors, and 2 more scored runs (8-1).
The Volunteer squad dropped a bomb of their own in the next inning to help fuel a 4-run rally (8-5), but the home team responded as two walks and an error were sandwiched around a single. Suddenly, 3 more runs had scored (11-5).
JU produced a run the next time up (11-6), but consecutive doubles from Adkins and Clark led to 2 for the Lady Eagles (13-6). In the final inning, Morris doubled and then scored on two sacrifice bunts to end the day (14-6).
At the plate, Adkins went 3-4 while Cox, Morris, and Sturgill provided two hits each. On the mound, Brewer and Cox earned the honors, as they combined for the victory, giving up 5 earned runs with 0 walks. Alice Lloyd took the hitting battle 11-8, but JU was done-in by 7 huge errors.
GAME 1: Alice Lloyd-6; JU-15
JU used 4 well-placed singles in the first and 5 more in the second to reel off 12 runs before the home squad knew what hit them (0-12). They then rolled off 3 more in the fourth (0-15).
Clark’s blast finally dented the home scoreboard in the fourth (1-15). Later, down to their last chance, the hosts scored 5 in the seventh (6-15). Unfortunately, it was simply to-little-to-late as JU held on.
At the plate, Clark was the only batter with multiple hits. On the mound, Howell, Napier, and Brewer were all roughed-up, allowing 18 hits and 15 runs. Johnson took the hitting battle 18-6, to overcome their 4 errors.
GAME 2: Alice Lloyd- 12, JU- 4
The Tennessee club struck first with a 3-spot to open the contest (0-3), and looked poised to pull away again. However, they then got to watch the Kentucky club battle back. In the third, one hit and two walks helped knot the score (3-3). ALC repeated the feat one inning later, this time using 3 singles to score the needed runs (6-3).
Johnson showed their mettle in the fifth as they squeezed a run home to keep the pressure on (6-4). Undeterred, Alice Lloyd promptly plated two more, backed by a wallop from the bat of Morris (8-4).
Now reenergized, the hosts ended the contest one inning later with 4 runs, Branham’s double being the big hit (12-4).
At the plate, Branham, and Adkins both smacked 3 hits. On the mound, Cox went the distance, allowing 8 hits, but just 2 earned runs. She fanned 7 batters. Alice Lloyd took the hitting battle 9-8 and had fewer errors (2 to 1).